Poll: Obama, Romney race still tight
June 26th, 2012
07:49 PM ET
2 years ago

Poll: Obama, Romney race still tight

(CNN) – President Barack Obama holds a slight advantage over his Republican rival Mitt Romney, according to a poll released Tuesday, though Americans' views on the economy continue to put a damper on the president's bid for a second term in the White House.

Overall, the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed Obama edging Romney nationally, with 47% of registered voters saying they back the incumbent Democrat and 44% backing his Republican rival. The 3-point margin was within the poll's sampling error.

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Obama's edge nationally was bolstered by strong leads among women, minorities and independents. The president led Romney 52%-39% among women, 52%-35% among Latinos ages 18 to 29 and 40%-36% among independents.

Romney was ahead among white voters, 53%-38%, and men, 48%-43%.

The economy, which voters consistently rate the most important issue, remains a problem for Obama. Fifty-three percent say they disapprove of Obama's handling of the economy, and 33% say Obama's policies have hurt the economy. Another 32% say the president's economic policies haven't made any difference, and 32% say they've helped.

In all, 61% of the respondents said they thought the nation was headed in the wrong direction, which was up three points from an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll last month.

A subset of registered voters in battleground states were questioned about Romney's business background, with the results indicating the former Bain Capital executive is struggling to turn his private equity experience into an asset for his campaign.

The survey showed 33% of voters in 12 battleground states saying what they had read or heard about Romney's business background negatively influenced their view of the candidate, compared with 18% who said the information led them to view Romney more positively. The remainder either felt they didn't have enough information about Romney's private equity career or that the information didn't make a difference.

The battleground states included in the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll were Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

President Barack Obama's campaign, eager to discredit his Republican rival's business credentials, has used attack ads in some of those states to paint Romney as a corporate raider who eliminated jobs and closed plants during his tenure as chief executive of Bain Capital. Romney's campaign argues the Obama attacks don't take into account Bain's successes.

Those attack ads might be having an effect on Romney's favorability rating in the swing states. Some 30% of the battleground-state voters said they viewed Romney favorably in the poll, compared to 36% who viewed him favorably one month ago.

Nationally, Romney's favorability hasn't taken such a hit. He holds a 33% favorably rating nationally, compared with 34% last month.

The NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll was conducted nationally by telephone from 1,000 voters between June 20-24. The sampling error was plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

– Check out the CNN Electoral Map and Calculator and game out your own strategy for November.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. chuck weidemann

    Housing prices up today....Americans saving $200million a day on gas and fuel....the economy may actually be better in the coming months....look for congress to obstruct as much as possible these next few weeks on highway bill and student loans....wouldn't want Obama to get re-elected because things are slowly getting better!! Ever hear the story of the tortoise and the hare?? Not a lot of 1% ers have. Always after the quick fix those teapubs....been yelling the sky is falling for quite some time now!!!!

    June 26, 2012 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  2. Hamsta

    Just look at chicago, Obama's hometown. All of the policies championed by the liberals are in effect there. Where has those policies taking them? The poor are even poorer, violent crime is now worse than New Orleans, the rich are moving out of state, education is a joke, gangs rule the streets and the debt is at $63,000 per household. That is what Obama's economic policies will bring you, tried and true in Chicago. Need I say more?

    June 26, 2012 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  3. chuck weidemann

    Government regulates business so business acts responsibly to their consumers and employees....free market regulation got us all into this mess....most all of the wealthy have not been suffering....unless you call only making a few millions versus hundreds of millions.... suffering!!!! People SHOULD NOT trust a businessman to run a country....way different!!!!

    June 26, 2012 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  4. ttim

    If R.M. wins this country will become a plutocracy. Run by and for the rich! Tax cuts and loop holes for the rich! Wake up people!

    June 26, 2012 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  5. Pa

    Don't blame them. Romney tells them how a young guy borrowed $20,000 and became a successful buiness man (he said he is not sure if it was more than 20,000). He said this in VA today. Last time he told students to borrow from their parents for college. My point is: if parents have, they don't need anyone telling them to borrow or give to their children. They will do it. What Gov. Romney appears to miss is that no all our parents have the capacity to borrow us money as his parents gave him 10 million. It is not that difficult to see his disconnect and difficulty to relate to an average person's life story. How many of us have parents that can borrow us thousands of dollars?

    June 26, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  6. trex

    .......this IS what Romney did for his millions. He ran Bain. Bain?Mitt bought distressed companies with the money given by investors, NOT Mitt's own money. Mitt/Bain then borrowed against all of the intrinsic value of the company, and GAVE THEMSELVES HUGE BONUSES FROM THAT MONEY. Then, when the bill for the company's loans come, Mitt/Bain DECLARED BANKRUPTCY, shutting the company down and displacing all the former employees to the unemployment rolls. Pretty Neat, huh. but Mitt wasnt done.
    Ya see, Mitt had to pay taxes on his bonuses and "earnings destroying the company. Then, THROUGH A LOOP HOLE GIVEN BY CONGRESS, Mitt paid the CAPITAL GAINS tax rate on his earnings WITHOUT EVER PUTTING HIS OWN MONEY AT RISK. Ya see, Congress initially gave the lower tax rate to individuals that RISKED THEIR OWN MONEY in the investment. BUT< MITT NEVER USED HIS OWN MONEY. That loop hole dropped Mitt's efffective tax rate FROM up to 35%...................and DROPPED IT TO 13.9% THAT HE PAID. So, when Mitt made $10,000,000.00 he paid 1,390,000 rather than the 3,500,000 he should have paid because he didnt use his own money. Mitt SCAMMED 1,110,000 PER 10 MILLION every year he made that much. And, it was all legal, due to lobbyist who backed certain (gop) congressman. ITS A SCAM OF THE SYSTEM.....................AND MITT WANTS TO BE OUR POTUS?..............................BULLS..............

    June 26, 2012 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  7. Anthony

    The Wall Street Journal Poll says that Obama is ahead of Romney. When are Republicans waking up to the fact that nominating Romney is a mistake? Shouldn't Republicans start saying that they will skip the Republican National Convention?

    June 26, 2012 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  8. The GOP needs to pack up and leave

    Obama - good
    Romney - bad

    June 26, 2012 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  9. king

    the reason mitten and the repubs are doing what they want, and what they please, is because they know that they have 65 percent of the white votes, so they can obstruct, stand on the sidelines and throw rocks as this president struggles alone to bring this country back from the disaster they have put them. furthermore they know the dems does not stand together, so they can easily put their will upon the american people, because they know theyve got the power in the country behind them. imagine if the dems were doing half the stuff these repubs are doing, as going after the criminal previous administration, cia, the obstructions and lies theyve been doing, since this president took office. imagine. but i guest 35 percent whites and whole bunch of blacks and latino minorities wheels no power against 65 percent whites including the 1 percenters. what kind of message can those folks sustain against the power in this country.

    June 26, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  10. Liz the First

    I cannot understand why this race is even a race. does anyone actually think the party that WRECKED the economy can FIX the economy????? it would be national suicide to elect RMoney. the economy is recovering, despite the rethugs' efforts to keep it in the toilet. wake up, folks! get rid of the rethug infestation in congress, and any blue dog DINOs, and then watch the economy take off.

    June 26, 2012 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  11. Tony in STL

    Seems like a bunch of Blue Dogs not showing up. Who cares? They should all be voted out.

    June 26, 2012 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  12. Squigman

    Tight, if you listen to AM radio. Tight, if you buy into all the hype from FOX. Tight, if you're in need of a litmus test to prove you're intelligent enough to tie your shoes and wave bye-bye. DUMB, REAL DUMB.

    June 26, 2012 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  13. once upon a horse

    ok so if President Obama is SO bad and Romney is the answer why is this race so close? If Romney is an accident waiting to happen and the country is actually turning around under Obama once again I ask why is this race so close? In either scenario I have mentioned this should be a runa away..or is it that we Americans are just so fickle?

    June 26, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  14. Thomas

    I can't vote for a CEO " Romney " , who's five sons avoided voluntary military service during Americas longest wars.

    Wars started by the same GW Bush Advisers Romney has working for him today.

    June 26, 2012 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  15. charles

    Mittens outsourcing jobs and collapsed the ones left here for. massive profit. Money has made him stiff like a pole. Capitalist vulture.

    June 26, 2012 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  16. The Bane of Mittler's Existence

    "Romney's campaign argues the Obama attacks don't take into account Bain's successes."

    Really, Mittler? Since the Mittler stump speech is just full of references regarding Obama's successes, I can see why this would just be such a complete surprise to the Romney campaign. Did you think Obama's campaign would put up an ad that took into account Bain's successes? Really?

    Well, take heart, Mittler and the Romney campaign people, I am here to report that I have heard the Obama campaign is sympathetic to your concerns. Please note that I am not an official campaign spokesperson, but I do believe they are now gearing up to release a new ad that takes into account Bain's successes in being the pioneers of outsourcing jobs to India, China, etc. I have heard that this kind of sucess is something that the Obama campaign feels that every voter should know about, and thus the Obama campaign is more than happy to address your concerns about reporting on Bain's successes and their millions of dollars made by shipping American jobs overseas.

    By the time the Obama campaign gets done with Mittler regarding Bain Capital, they are going to have to rename it Bane Capital, as Bain will be the bane of Mittler's political existence.

    June 26, 2012 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  17. T

    Isn't it funny how companies say they will not hire the adverage person who has been out of work for 2 years but the person who has been out of work will vote for some one to be POTUS who has been out of work for the pass 4-6 years??!?!?!? geesssh!!

    June 26, 2012 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    Obama will remain President... Romney is too low key... excites no one. A shame... the nation will know further decline...

    June 26, 2012 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  19. ARMYCSM

    Of course most o the whites are going to vote for Romney. It's in their nature, even if romney policies will negatively impact their lives.Too bad they are not majority enough to give the country away to romney and his rich boyfriends... just sayin.

    June 26, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  20. America1st

    Not a chance in Haydes I'll vote for a guy who cut American jobs, OUTSOURCED those jobs to communists in China, lines his pockets iwth the profits. ,and DUMPED the pension liabilities on the rest of us taxpayers. He can go to..... Romney, go home. Never return.

    June 26, 2012 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  21. CRAIG

    It's tight because the country's split. Things will change with the debates as the independents & swing states will see that Romney is really an empty suit and they'll move over to Obama. The country will rejoice and the billionaires who are funding the Romney campaign will be very upset because they won't have a puppet president.

    June 26, 2012 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  22. ThinkAgain

    If Mittens gets elected, we're sunk as a nation. Unemployment will skyrocket as more and more jobs get outsourced to India and China (Mittens' area of "expertise"); the financial industry will be de-regulated and the global economy will crash again; 2-3 Supreme Court Justices will be replaced with hard-right activist judges like John Roberts and statues like Roe v Wade will go up in a puff of smoke.

    If you want this, vote Mittens. If you don't, vote Obama/Biden and a straight Democratic ticket come November.

    It's that simple.

    June 27, 2012 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  23. normajean @ verizon ,com

    I'd like to know if you Romney people can list even one through three just what he stands for and what legitimate plans he has to improve the countys current malaise!! Every time he is asked a direct question he slides right past an answer. If giving a speech where he has time to plan ahead he continues to talk about what he will take away from an already needy society.....but when asked a specific question ...he comes up empty!!!!...This is not presidential and in fact is scary. Are you aware just what an "empty" personality you really have here?? I hope you realize it by November or we'll all be sorry!!!~

    June 27, 2012 01:41 am at 1:41 am |
  24. Larry

    Lets elect romney he knows how jobs conme and go like when bain sent how many jobs over seas killed kb toys and other companies yeah he knows how to make rich guys money thats about it. He cant and wont help all the people struggling in this country hell only make it even harder.

    June 27, 2012 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  25. Namepaul

    Obama..... the worst president in history

    June 27, 2012 02:35 am at 2:35 am |
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