Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Bloomberg poll has Obama up significantly over Romney

A new Bloomberg poll has Obama ahead of Romney by a margin of 53 to 40 percent among likely voters, this despite the fact that the public gives Obama low marks in dealing with the economy and the deficit.

It seems that voters may be concerned about Obama's performance but more worried that Romney would do worse. This is supported by Romney's favourable to unfavorable ratio, which sits at 39 to 49 percent in the wrong direction.

A majority of voters, 55 percent, view Romney as out of touch with average Americans. 36 percent view Obama that way.

One pollster involved with the survey said that, "those most enthusiastic about the election are more supportive of Romney, but Obama's voters are more locked into their candidate than Romney's." The Bloomberg report on the poll states added:

Romney inspires far less enthusiasm even from his supporters than does Obama, with 35 percent of Romney backers saying their support for him is "very strong," compared to 51 percent of Obama's backers who say so. 

A couple of things stand out: the first is that despite the fact that the economy will be the leading issue, and it likely won't be performing well by November, voters may prefer to stick with the devil they know.

On the question of enthusiasm, it will be key for Obama to motivate his base to actually come out and vote. My guess is that the right-wing noise machine will help with that as Obama supporters are likely to be angered by all the attacks paid for by big conservative money. Those attacks may be aimed at swing or "persuadable" voters, but they could also motivate those who are "locked in" to Obama to get to the polls.

Whatever the case, November will bring a highly polarized atmosphere and a likely competitive race, which may be enough to juice turnout, which helps Obama.

It's only one poll, but Obama's team has to be happy with its implications, even if the top line number looks like a bit of an outlier.

The poll was conducted June 15 to 18. 1002 adults were polled, and the margin of error is 3.1 percent.

(Cross-posted at Lippmann's Ghost.)

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