Poll: Obama bests GOP frontrunners
February 6th, 2012
08:53 AM ET
6 years ago

Poll: Obama bests GOP frontrunners

(CNN) – President Barack Obama tops the Republican presidential frontrunners in hypothetical head-to-head matchups, according to a new survey.

The ABC/Washington Post Poll indicated Obama is ahead of Mitt Romney, 51% to 45%, among registered voters. The new figure is the first time Obama cracked 50% against the former Massachusetts governor in the survey. He received 46% to Romney's 47% in mid-January.

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It appears Obama was also aided by an increase in support among independent voters, who were split 48% for Obama and 47% for Romney. The former Massachusetts governor held a 12-point edge in January.

The new figures showed Romney's business background, which he often touts on the campaign trail, is a positive element of his candidacy. He held a narrow edge over Obama on who is best to handle the economy.

The president also bested Gingrich, 54% to 43%, among registered votes, although it was a smaller margin than the 15% by which Obama led the former House speaker in January.

In an interview on Sunday the president said he deserves a second term. The poll found 49% of registered voters agreed, while 49% said he does not deserve a second term.

But the president did not fare as well among independent voters, who will likely play a significant role in the 2012 elections.

Obama received a 47% approval rate among the key voting bloc and a 50% disapproval figure.

The poll questioned 1,000 adults between Wednesday and Saturday with a sampling error of plus or minus four percentage points.

- CNN's Gabriella Schwarz and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Also see:

Nevada runners up, Paul and Santorum vow to continue campaigns

Obama: Israel undecided on attack against Iran

Gingrich outlines a Southern revival strategy

Ohio newspaper endorses Romney

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich • Polls • President Obama • Republicans
soundoff (101 Responses)
  1. Al-NY,NY


    These polls are just snapshots of how American things at this moment. So many things can happen between now and december. These polls are good for talking points in TV shows but they do not mean much.

    You are right except if it's a right-wing Rassmussen poll that finds the opposite (Obama behind). THEN the tightie righties scream "It's over. GOP in 2012" They dismiss this poll but will cite others as fact if it reflects their views......pathetic.

    February 6, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  2. Independent In Albany

    I was a republican when it was the party of true conservatives. Today's Buckley-ite Neo_conservatives are loking a little to Neo_Facist for my tastes

    February 6, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  3. TR808

    How Is it a choice when you can only pick based on who-is-less-worse?

    Ron Paul 2012
    The only real change which will help America.

    Obama and integrity? Laughable. Take a look at who he surrounds himself with – all wall street folks with deep connections to the real estate collapse. He puts a senior Monsanto exec as head of the FDA. He signs the NDAA so he can detain Americans at whim.

    The sad part is Romney is probably worse.

    February 6, 2012 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  4. Lead Baron

    It's also because the GOP Presidential wannabes looks like a clown car whose occupants take turns wearing the "Flavor of the Week" slogan. We're tired of hearing the same ol' "waaa boo hoo liberal waaa boo hoo Obama socialist " Romney just can't relate to the middle class, and Newt's just a grumpy old Playboy wamnabe whose baggage has baggage

    February 6, 2012 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  5. Mk54

    Look for Fox News to Rush out a new poll that suits them better.

    February 6, 2012 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  6. Ghandi

    Can people be so stupid to think that Obama would be best for America for another failed 4 years? Another 4 years of Obama and America will be no better than Zimbabwe or South Africa.

    February 6, 2012 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  7. lucy2

    If Romney's the nominee, I guess the GOP won't be able to pull the "elitist" card they tried on Obama last time.
    I lean liberal, but am an independent and always try to consider all the candidates and have occasionally voted Republican when they have the better candidate. But Romney's yet to say or do anything to make me think he'd be worth my vote. He seems completely out of touch and willing to say anything he thinks people want to hear.

    February 6, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  8. TheFatherofLies

    I would like to meet someone who is surprised by this, genuinely. Until the GOP get's its next Reagan (keep waiting, it should be any decade now) this should surprise exactly zero people.

    February 6, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  9. AZ Wildcat

    Looks like you reptilian shapeshifters are getting what you deserve. Obama wins in a landslide.

    February 6, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  10. rs

    The GOP has done everything to stall the economy, and wreck the Obama administration. They have: created the TEA Party (a group of ultra-radical anti-taxers); supported the will of one man: Grover Norquist over that of the majority of Americans; virtually stopped all judicial and administrative nominees from even getting hearings in the Senate; supported the insane "Birther" movement along with the "Muslim" and "socialist" whispering campaign; the have halted virtually every effort to bring relief to the middle class (whose spending drives the economy), refering instead to coddle the rich with useless and unfair tax cuts; supported "corporations as people"; engaged in re-starting the "social wars" with fear and smear on abortion, gay rights, religious issues, etc. and in GOP-run states taken aggressive anti-labor, anti-middle working class stances.

    The problem is Americans woke up, and saw the GOP for what it really is: a tool of the 1%, bent on destroying the America we know and love.

    It only makes sense that when they run super rich candidates (Romney the richest and most clueless ever) that Obama appears ever more popular.

    February 6, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  11. joyce

    I was a republican who voted for Obama before and I will vote for him again. I can't imagine why anyone would vote for Romney. At this point I can't imagine why anyone would vote for any republican.

    February 6, 2012 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  12. The Real Tom Paine

    The opposition, Scott, seems to think that everything could have been turned around in 3 months if only the governemnt did nothing: That's precisely the thinking that got us into this mess, slowly but surely over 3 decades. The people accusing Obama of being a liar need to step back and ask themselves what the GOP, which has dominated policy in this country for the last 3 decades, would have done differently that would not have resulted in even more upheaval: even Cheney said that, as distasteful as the first series of bailouts were, the alternative was far worse. It seems as though the only things the Conservatives have left as the economy slowly improves is to vent their spleens with the usual insults. By the way, "expnads", "lkkickbacks", "grat", "nost", etc, are not recognised words, even in the conservative lexicon.

    February 6, 2012 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  13. Daniel

    The poll was conducted with 1000 people? What a small sample size. I just did my own scientific poll by asking my neighbor what he thought. Turns out 100% of people would vote for Romney should he win the nomination.

    February 6, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  14. tannim

    I see the Kool-Aid drinkers are out in force. The fact is, they all stink and will do nothing to fix America's problems, manily because their track records indicate that all they've done is add to them! Since the definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results, I can only conclude that voters who vote for these wastes of ballot paper are insane. And thus explains why America is heading off the cliff.

    February 6, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  15. Stephen in VA

    The only poll that means anything is the one we'll participate in November 6th.

    February 6, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  16. shayward

    Don't bet Gingrich out yet, his moonplan has me onside

    February 6, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  17. Cedar Rapids

    'Dean – Early polls are like liberals...useless.'
    or like your posts as well it seems.

    "Jesse – What about Ron Paul? Of wait, we aren't supposed to speak of him. Shhhhh."
    Apparently the GOP rank and file arent talking about him either considering his performance so far.

    And I love the people that dismiss a poll as lie if they think its from a liberal source but will claim its carved in stone if it came from a conservative source and showed the reverse.

    February 6, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  18. Nick

    Of course, the poll does not mean much. Between now and November, so much can happen; People may realize more and more what Romney stands for – the Rich and protecting their capital gains.

    February 6, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  19. Jess C

    Polling 1000 people at home on land lines is pretty much guaranteeing the most conservative responses. That demographic is likely not a progressive-leaning one and they still favor Obama. He will smash the GOP candidate handily. They have proven to be out of touch with most Americans and offer nothing but the same failed policies that created the melt-down. To put them back in charge would be ludicrous; just look at the "do nothing" Congress an example. All they've done is try to stall progress so they can blame everything on Obama. Guess what, it isn't working.

    February 6, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  20. Gloria

    Please God, keep the Republicans talking so they could help President Obama win a second term. And God, please keep them posting too.

    February 6, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  21. Hahahahahaha

    You don't say. All these numbskull GOPers are all spooled up but what they eon't realize is this primary race is like determining who wins gold I. The special Olympics. In the REAL Olympics of politics, they don't stand a chance. 4 MORE YEARS!

    February 6, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  22. mcore

    Just keep denying what you know in your hearts to be true: the GOP has shot themselves in the foot (and the leg, and the head) this primary season, and Obama's approval is slowly rising as the economy improves. By the time the election rolls around, the Republican brand will have been completely tarnished and Obama will be on his way to his second term.

    February 6, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  23. BunnyBunny

    Duh!! Lowest tax rates in 50 years. 23 consecutive months of private sector job growth. Obama created more jobs in 3 yrs than GWB did in 8. The bulk of his job growth was in the private sector, while he cut jobs in government.
    Bin Laden, Ghaddify most of the al Qaida leadership GONE! Somali pirates, hostages rescued. Stock market from 7000 to over 12000. Troops out of Iraq. Saved the American auto industry.
    We are finally crawling out of the hole the republicans put us in with Bush. Who wants to be pushed back in the hole.

    February 6, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  24. Alois

    Wonder how much money the super corrupt obama administration paid the Washington post to print this bogus poll. Take a real, uncorrupted survey throughout the whole country. The facts are, they will find out that obama is still a loser. Nothing these loser obama followers can say or do can change that.

    February 6, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  25. robertsontg@yahoo.com

    Early polls are like Republicans, useless.

    February 6, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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