New polls on 2012 battles in Ohio & Pennsylvania
September 28th, 2011
09:06 AM ET
7 years ago

New polls on 2012 battles in Ohio & Pennsylvania

(CNN) - New polls in Ohio and Pennsylvania indicate that President Barack Obama has his work cut out for him to keep the two key battleground states in the Democratic column in next year's presidential election.

According to a Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday morning, 53 percent of Ohio voters disapprove of the job the president's doing in office, with 42 percent saying they approve of how Obama's handling his duties. The 42 percent approval rating matches the president's all-time low in Quinnipiac polling for Ohio. The survey also indicates that by a 51 to 43 percent margin, Buckeye State voters say the president doesn't deserve to be re-elected in 2012.

In hypothetical general election matchups against the top two Republican presidential candidates, the poll indicates things are pretty much all tied up, with Obama holding a 44 to 41 percent margin over Texas Gov. Rick Perry and holding a 44 to 42 percent margin over former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Both margins are within the poll's sampling error.

In a sign of just how important the state is to the White House, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden made four visits combined to the state this month, to lobby for the president's jobs package.

"Ohio is ground zero for the jobs debate," GOP strategist and CNN contributor Alex Castellanos said. "If the president is losing Ohio, he is not just losing a state; he is losing the debate on jobs."

Ohio's 18 electoral votes are expected to be pivotal to the 2012 presidential election. George W. Bush sealed his 2004 re-election by narrowly winning the state over Sen. John Kerry. In 2008, Obama and Biden took the state by five points. But the GOP won big in last year's midterm elections, taking back the governor's office and five House seats held by Democrats.

From 1976 through the 2004 election, Pennsylvania was an extremely contested state in presidential politics. Obama won the state by ten points over Sen. John McCain in the 2008 contest, but the Republicans stormed back in last year's midterm elections, winning back the governor's office, a U.S. Senate seat and five House seats held by Democrats.

A new Quinnipiac poll in the Keystone state indicates that by a 54 to 43 percent margin, Pennsylvania voters disapprove of the job Obama's doing in the White House, and by a 51 to 44 percent margin, they don't think he deserves a second term in office.

According to the survey, the president holds a 45 to 43 percent margin over Romney in a hypothetical general election matchup, with Obama holding a 45 to 42 percent margin over former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania. Both margins are within the poll's sampling error. Obama has a 46 to 40 percent advantage over Perry in the survey..

The Qunnipiac University poll in Pennsylvania was conducted September 21-26, with 1,370 registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.7 percentage points.

The Quinnpiac University poll in Ohio was conducted September 20-25, with 1,301 registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.7 percentage points.


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Filed under: 2012 • Ohio • Pennsylvania • President Obama
soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. GOP Failed America

    I think all politicians are going to do bad next year considering the current economic climate. Not only do Americans disapprove of the President, but they disapprove more even of the job Congress has done, especially since the 2010 election. I would also assume they disapprove of their state elected officials, especially in high unemployment states. Many complain government is broken, but it doesn"t help when you have ill-informed voters who often make the wrong choices against their economic best interests. Let's hope the majority voters vote their econocmic best interests. If they do, Obama and the Democrats will win big in 2012.

    September 28, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  2. A Repulbican

    He's beating everyone in the match ups!!!! It can't get any worse from here, so the republicans have a lot to do, wait until obama focuses on who ever we nominate, these numbers will for sure be even a larger head wind for the repub nominee!

    September 28, 2011 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Ray E. (Georgia) wrote:
    So far unemployment remains high. It has been that way since the democrats took back the Congress in 2006.
    Actually, the foreclosure crisis was just beginning to take hold when Democrats took over Congress in 2007. Unemployment began to rise as more and more people lost their homes because they couldn't make payments. Unemployment was at 7.8% on Jan. 21, 2009, and rising at a rate of 0.3% per month. It finally hit 10.2% late that year, and dropped to 8.8% earlier this year.

    That's only 1.0% higher than when Obama to office. The Dow rose from 7000 to nearly 13,000. GDP changed from 5% contraction to 3% growth. Jobs growth per month went from -700,000 to +200,000. And all of those positive indicators shot the bed when the Tea Party came to town and began cuts and hostage taking.

    September 28, 2011 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  4. logic in LA

    His disapproval rating does not mean people like the other guys any better!
    Why not waiting until next year to worry about the presidential election and let these guys do their job?

    September 28, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  5. Debbie

    Too far out to get all excited. Besides what I've seen between the DEMS/GOP/TEA since the 2008 election and then the 2010 election is that NONE OF THEM are for the American people. I'm not confident that the USA will even exist by 2012. Our experiment in a democratic republic is a dismal failure! No center ideals only extreme views. We've given representative government over to $$$$ and thrown in religion for one big pot of evil. By 2012 I think America will have: become a plutocracy, failed and become Chinese, or a revolution.

    September 28, 2011 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama


    @Fran and Rick McDaniel and Four and the Door:

    I wonder who you folks are trying to convince most ... yourselves ... or Obama supporters. Unlikely that the nonsense you brew is really convincing anyone who might otherwise vote for President Obama to instead vote Republican. The alternative is just so much worse, you understand.
    My sentiments exactly Lynda.

    September 28, 2011 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  7. Willy Brown

    I left Columbus, Ohio 1 week ago. They are going to be voting for anyone but Obambi in 2012

    September 28, 2011 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  8. Mr. Moderate

    As bad as his approval rate is at this point, it's still a heck of a lot better than any of the other guity parties and all along his likeability ratings have held up which will make it easier to improve his approval ratings.

    September 28, 2011 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  9. Anonymous

    Vote no for any Republican

    September 28, 2011 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  10. Four and The Door

    @Fran and Rick McDaniel and Four and the Door:
    I wonder who you folks are trying to convince most ... yourselves ... or Obama supporters
    Just the facts. America has been financially ransacked by this administration and his little duckling congress in tow and none of what they promised worked. They got the debt way up against loud and boisterous disagreement. But the results are negligible. And now it is a very difficult job for everyone in Washington to figure a reasonable way out of this financial hole. Tax the billionaires into submission? You run out of billionaires before you even pay for Obama's newest greatest jobs bill. Enough already. New plan, please. And someone who knows what the heck they are doing. Romney 2012.

    September 28, 2011 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  11. John

    Obama is still up even though his approval ratings are down. However the GOP candidates are in the tank......

    September 28, 2011 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  12. The Real Tom Paine

    The other question that needs to be asked is how do people feel about the other candidates and their stated postions? Granted, Romney's change by the hour, Bachmann is crazy, Perry is losing the TP/ Mental patient vote by supporting in-state tuition for children of illegals provided they have demonstrated they are on a path to citzenship, ( and he has those pesky statements about SS and secession to explain), Ron Paul has been in government for 3 decades explaining why we don't need it ( and failing each time), etc. I won't bother with the others ( sorry, Herman Cain fans, but he won't make it past NH.). There is no one person the GOP can rally around, much less rally a significant number of independents along with them. All they have is anger and frustration, and no solutions. If the Bush tax cuts had worked, we would be swimming in jobs and revenue, but we're not. We are paying for 3 decades of bad policy that rewarded deregulation, greed, and defecated on responsibility ( from a policy standpoint). This will take a long time to climb out of, people, and there is no path to paying things off that does not involve both cuts and taxes. Its like a family getting second jobs AND cutting spending: that's how I got out of debt. Why does the GOP not get that? Obama has made hard choices because none of the options in front of him were good: what does the GOP offer except more of the same, and always saying NO?

    September 28, 2011 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  13. BWright

    This poll of register voters, it means nothing! The only polls that matter because they tend to be more correct is Likely Voters!

    September 28, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  14. walter

    Only things Republacains want is Free Greed Free Greed and not caring where the Greed even if it means taking money from children and eldery programs so they get their Greed Fix.

    September 28, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  15. ST

    I will vote for President Obama for sure because:
    1. He is fighting for those who have not
    2. He has no challenge from his own party
    3. He killed bin Laden
    4. He has no big scandal
    5. The rest of the world is not against neither him nor US
    6. People feel comfortable and at ease when meeting him
    7. He is the cool man
    8. He is quite intelligent and does not rush to tackle problems, very thoughtful
    9. He doesn't show out that he is angry or desperate
    10. While campaigning he is always awesome and nice to listen to

    September 28, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  16. Lynda/Minnesota

    "And someone who knows what the heck they are doing. Romney 2012."

    Let's just say that I have absolutely no confidence in the man who as governor of Massachusetts ranked 47 in job creation during the most prosperous years America has ever witnessed and leave it at that. I'll leave Americans to decide who's talking points they trust more - the most inept Congress in American history, or President Obama, the man who has had to work within the confines of the most inept Congress in American history.

    September 28, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  17. Woman In California

    If the people of Ohio and Pennsylvania think the republicans will better their lives – by all means vote for ANY of them. However, there are some sensible people living in these states that will be able to take a long hard look at the issues and the alternatives and realize the best choice is with our current president Barack H. Obama.

    September 28, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    Four and The Door wrote:
    Just the facts. America has been financially ransacked by this administration and his little duckling congress in tow and none of what they promised worked. They got the debt way up against loud and boisterous disagreement. But the results are negligible. And now it is a very difficult job for everyone in Washington to figure a reasonable way out of this financial hole.
    You forgot the facts. Extreme right wing talking points are not facts. Your facts would make a Tea Party crowd proud. Your remarks actually turn off anyone of a sound mind.

    Here's a fact. Yes, we have trillion dollar annual deficits today. That is the path set for this country by the Bush adminstration who ran up the first $1.5T deficit during his last year. We are still on the same economic path that Bush began. It is time to get off of this road, but we must first reach the corner so that we can make a turn that does not take us into a ditch, which is exactly what draconian spending cuts will do.

    September 28, 2011 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  19. Leeman

    I live in Ohio and his numbers are worse than that and they are not coming back no matter what kind of lies he spins. Results matter and he is not cutting it.

    September 28, 2011 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  20. Maggie

    I definitely will not be voting for Obama. He is bankrupting our country and another 4 years of his presidency will permanently damage our American economy. When will you people wake up and see that his incapable of leading our country out of this disaster that he has helped to create. Maybe when you lose your jobs or your homes you will finally wake up but it maybe too late. You better think carefully before you put that "X" beside his name because you may never know life like what it was before because our country will be totally broke.

    September 28, 2011 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  21. Michelle

    One doesn't have to like what the current President is doing to be able to hold it up to the alternatives and see those are infinitely worse. Holding one's nose to vote for the lesser of two evils is a time honored tradition when there are only two realistic choices, both carefully groomed for Party First – People Last.

    That said, I'm not sure why Santorum's name was even floated here. Too many remember the taxpayers of Penn Hills and the absolutely insane allegations Santorum made against his opponent o try to cover u his lies in 1996. No incumbent of any party loses a purple state by 17% for no reason, and not all of us forget that easily.

    September 28, 2011 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  22. Ohio

    @Four and The Door & Terry, VA
    Can you please tell us what policies Obama has passed or that are in place right now that have made your life worst. and then please tell us what policies have the Tea Party congress passed or have in place since the 2010 elections that has made your life better?

    September 28, 2011 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  23. vic , nashville ,tn

    May be many disagree with president when it’s come to choice Obama will win

    Example After republicans took control Tennessee 2010 they pass the voter ID bill this year now they came to know that bill discourages voting by elderly. Now republicans try to sell the bill they are finding hard time
    Seniors worried about Paul Ryan budget plan and social security “ponzi” scheme

    September 28, 2011 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  24. California Conservative

    OMG = Obama Must GO!!!!!!!

    September 28, 2011 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  25. Fran

    Lynda – I'm not trying to convince anyone, the facts are convincing enough. If you can dispute any of the points I made, have at it.

    September 28, 2011 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
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