CNN Poll: Romney's likability fading
February 14th, 2012
06:00 PM ET
2 years ago

CNN Poll: Romney's likability fading

(CNN) - Mitt Romney's overall favorable ratings have dropped, while Rick Santorum's standing has jumped among Republicans, according to a new national survey.

A CNN/ORC International poll released Tuesday indicates Romney's popularity has especially taken a tumble among Republicans, with a 13-point decline in positive reviews from his own party.

See full results (pdf)

In the new survey, 54% of Republicans said they hold a favorable opinion of Romney, while 67% said the same in January. Among all Americans, 34% described the candidate as likable, down from 41% last month.

Meanwhile, Santorum's recent victories have boosted his standing among Republicans, 56% of whom had a good opinion of the former Pennsylvania senator, up from 49% in January.

The survey was conducted Friday through Monday, the tail end of a big week for Santorum with three contest victories followed by a spike in fundraising and poll numbers.

But among all Americans, Santorum's favorable rating has remained flat. Thirty-two percent held a good opinion in the new survey, while 31% said the same in January.

Texas Rep. Ron Paul and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich received positive reviews from roughly half of all Republicans.

But those numbers declined when Americans of all political affiliations were surveyed. In that case, Paul came in at 42%, ahead of Romney and Santorum, and Gingrich's favorable rating fell to 25%.

That leaves only one presidential candidate in the race with a national favorable rating above the 50% mark: President Barack Obama.

Among all Americans, Obama received positive reviews from 53%, with the poll suggesting he may have grown more popular in recent months.

Asked about issues, Republicans see Romney as the candidate most suited to handle the economy, taxes, health care and the deficit.

Gingrich, meanwhile, has a major advantage on foreign policy and illegal immigration, and Santorum is viewed as most equipped on abortion issues.

The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International from February 10-13, with 1,026 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

The sample also includes 937 interviews among registered voters, with a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.

– CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Also see:

Romney seeks to unite conservatives

Protestors disrupt Santorum event, get arrested

National Review calls for Gingrich to leave race

Pro-Romney super PAC increases buy in Michigan


Filed under: 2012 • CNN/ORC International poll • Mitt Romney • Republicans
soundoff (121 Responses)
  1. Mark

    If the media talks America into electing Obama again, you better start stocking up on canned food now.

    February 14, 2012 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  2. NVa Native

    Ro-money's likeability is fading just as GOP's legitimacy and integrity slips away with all their lies & deceptions catching up to them.

    February 14, 2012 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  3. Sadie Boyd

    It is amazing that Ron Paul is the most likable of the Republicans when polled by all Americans. What is with this delegate process? We need election reform...I want my vote to count...I am not in agreement with his vision or his view of the constitution; however, I am extremely sympathetic too how he is being shut out by the party, by the media and the process. His story in the future will be discussed in political science and sociology classes for years to come. Why is he so dangerous? It seems he is less dangerous than a ethics violator with a mental disorder, and he is less dangerous than a sociopathic 1%-er, he is less dangerous than a guy who believes God talks to him and he is anointed; but, he may not be less dangerous than a Kenyan Socialist with an angry wife.

    February 14, 2012 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  4. dagoberto

    Ron Paul has better support abroad.

    February 14, 2012 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  5. John

    It because all the republican candidate are nothing but clowns and nobody can really make up there mind who they really want. Next week It will be Ron Paul that take the lead. This Is nothing but a joke.

    February 14, 2012 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  6. AngryBob

    If Mitt Romney's popularity is waning, perhaps it's because they now see him for what he is, a chameleon who changes color to blend into whatever political climate is popular at the moment, never showing his true colors.

    How "conservative" was Mitt Romney when he was dodging the draft during Vietnam? How "conservative" was Romney when he was doing the "Eagle Rock" after drawing a high lottery number in 1970? How "conservative"
    was he encouraging others to risk their lives in Vietnam when he was too cowardly to enlist himself, or at least volunteer for the draft (a two year commitment)?

    Well judging by other prominent "conservatives" like Rush Limbaugh, G.W. Bush and Dick Cheney, also prominent chicken hawks, he's pretty typical of the Republican conservatives, especially the wealthy ones.

    February 14, 2012 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  7. Henry

    If republicans are foolish enough to nominate Santorum, they are gonna end up with four more years of Obama. Romney is the only rational choice for the R's.

    February 14, 2012 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  8. rs

    What's to like? An insanely rich man who pays at a lower tax rate than I do; earns more than me in a day than I do in a year; "likes to fire people"; doesn't worry about the poor; and seems to feel we should just get over it and make him President- no thanks!

    February 14, 2012 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  9. Barry Marson

    In other words, none of the GOP clowns can beat Obama..
    PRick wants to stop all aborations
    RMoney wants to ship all jobs over seas and give additional tax cuts to Multi-millionaires
    Grinch wants to fight every war and have your kids work cleaning bathroom and sweap the streets
    Wrong Paul wants to be an isolationist..

    February 14, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  10. Nurul Aman

    I hope Romney's flip-floping will be realized by Republican voters. Romney has real problem in understanding American issues and what is in voters mind. He thinks that he was capable of fooling Americans through desperate effort of telling fabricated stories about economic recovery. I have news for Romney: Please do not underestimate American voters' intelligence to figure out exactly who you are. You are no good for American Politics. You are very good in making money by charging enormous interest rate on small businesses for your venture capitalism (You are a vulture capitalist). Vulture capitalism is actually worse than crony capitalism. You are dangerous for this country's future prosperity. Pl Go away Mr Romney!

    February 14, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  11. Tom

    Mitt Romney's personality reminds me of a dial tone.

    February 14, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  12. AZK

    So ron Paul is winning?

    February 14, 2012 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  13. Big_D

    Romney is as likable as the Mr. Burns character from the Simpsons for the same reasons.

    February 14, 2012 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  14. andrew

    Santorum's miniscule appeal will fade as soon as his message gets out as well.

    February 14, 2012 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  15. Linda Harvey

    I just am so tired of the media making the decisions about this election. Your articles lead people to decide who they should support. Why can you not be non-partial. You decide who who is doing good for the moment and everyone else get the negative comments and articles. Then, you decide it is someone elses turn. You really are the ones that are deciding this GOP campaign. I am so sick of it all I am to the point I can't watch politics anymore.

    February 14, 2012 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  16. z

    woohoo, cnn cannot deny ron paul is the honest and the people candidate.

    February 14, 2012 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  17. Anonymous

    His popularity may be fading, but IF money, BIG money can win a nomination, he will get it. This is also what's wrong with our current political system and why the average American has no voice in our government anymore. Personally, I don't believe there's a single candidate in this field of GOP nutcases and extremists that can beat Obama. They have no electible candidates, they have no new vision or policies, and they are too extreme on most all of their positions and they quite obviously are totally out of touch with the Average American.

    February 14, 2012 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  18. Woman In California

    Loren, Keene NH

    @Woman in California,

    You must be religiously unfamiliar with Mitt Romney's faith. The Morman faith is much like other Christian faiths, they do not believe in participating in war. "Thou shall not kill." You can have knowledge about something and not have done it. I am not a nurse but I know how to care for my child just as good as a nurse when he is sick.

    Obama didn't go into the service either, nor Santorum, nor Ginrigh. Ron Paul was a doctor in the service. Can he beat Obama. Why pick only on Romney when Obama never served. Heck he's barely a President!

    Thanks Sniffit for your elequoent answer but now I am available to take the call.

    Loren, Keene – our president DOES NOT promote war. Nor does he beat his chest while he surrounds himself with five able sons who back him up in his brand of ignorance either. I hope that answers your question. Willard is a chicken who wants you to protect him. Have fun dying for him.

    February 14, 2012 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  19. Tyler Durden

    But I have always been able to buy friends! Man, this campaigning stuff is hard! I wish I was wearing my magic underwear!

    February 14, 2012 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  20. chaz8181

    It is going to be ultra conservative (Santorum) versus Obama..but where are the ultra conservatives?

    February 14, 2012 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  21. txdeist1

    Romney has nice hair,
    for the poor he does not care.
    He state this is his view,
    and we know it's painfully true.
    For him, firing people is just a game,
    middle class or poor, they are all the same.
    As president he will represent the rich and few,
    this is why I wont vote for him, and neither should you!

    February 14, 2012 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  22. Bill in Florida

    Yeehaw! Santorum leads on abortion issues. Let's see, among the general electorate, abortion ranks #35 in importance among all issues? Yeah, baby. Nothing like pandering to your base while alienating 70% of all voters.

    Looks like we're looking at a Romney/Santorum ticket for the GOP, with both candidates polling under 35% favorability.

    Obama/Biden 2012!

    February 14, 2012 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  23. Romney is not My Hero

    FADING?!!! You've got to be kidding. I never liked him. He's a liar, a cheat and can't care about anyone with a net worth below millionaire status. He's completely crazy. Why ANYBODY would like this Robo- Republican is beyond me.

    As stated in the article: "That leaves only one presidential candidate in the race with a national favorable rating above the 50% mark: President Barack Obama." That's right – OBAMA 2012

    February 14, 2012 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  24. DavidE7

    Everything the Founding Fathers fought for is at stake. Romney represents the same values as those who tried to deny the colonists their freedom. He thinks he can roll over every opponent with blitzkrieg tactics learned from his father. He thinks that money power beats people power. Americans must say no to Romney to have any hope of reclaiming their nation. By the way, I am not a Paul supporter or a Santorum supporter, just an objective observer.

    February 14, 2012 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  25. RomneyWillStabilizeTheUS

    We need his leadership, morality, and good sense.

    Mr. Romney and Mr. Santorum would be an upstanding team as president and vice president.

    February 14, 2012 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
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