August 9th, 2012
04:00 PM ET
2 years ago

CNN Poll: Obama holds 7-point lead over Romney

Washington (CNN) - Mitt Romney's unfavorable rating is up, most Americans think the Republican presidential challenger favors the rich, and it appears the number of people who believe that the economy will not get better if Romney is elected has edged up slightly, according to a new national poll.

But a CNN/ORC International survey released Thursday also indicates that Romney's supporters are increasingly getting behind the presumptive GOP nominee.

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It all adds up to a seven point advantage for President Barack Obama over the former Massachusetts governor, with 52% of registered voters questioned in the survey saying that they'd vote to re-elect the president and 45% backing Romney.

"Among independent voters, the poll indicates President Obama has a 53%-42% lead," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "The president holds a nine point advantage among women voters and a smaller six point edge among men."

The good news for Romney: Four months after he wrapped up the race for the GOP nomination, 56% of Romney voters say they strongly support him, up from 47% in May. Sixty-one percent of Obama voters say they strongly support the president.

Since the start of the general election in April, the Obama campaign and Democratic groups have launched attacks on the presumptive Republican nominee, and the survey indicates that they appear to be working.

While Romney's favorable rating has remained steady (47% now compared to 48% in July), his unfavorable rating has jumped from 42% last month to 48% now. The president's 56%-42% favorable-unfavorable rating now is little changed from July.

Among independents, the poll indicates Romney's image has taken a beating. In May, only 40% of independents had an unfavorable view of Romney. Now, 52% of independents have a negative view of him.

Other findings: Sixty-four percent of all Americans, and 68% of independents, think Romney favors the rich over the middle class. And 63% of the public thinks Romney should release more tax returns than he has already made public, a figure which rises to 67% among independents.

"These are all signs that a summer of negative campaigning on the part of the Democrats seems to be taking its toll on the presumptive GOP nominee," says Holland.

Most significantly, it appears that Romney's image as a can-do guy on the economy may have also been hurt. In May, 50% of all Americans said that the economy would get better if Romney were elected. That's now down to 45%, two points below Obama's number. It's likely that all of this is the result of the Democrats' efforts to paint Romney in an unflattering light, but so far Obama has avoided any blowback from that strategy, as evidenced by no rise in his unfavorable rating.

Who do Americans think will win the election?

Regardless of which candidate they support, 63% think Obama will win re-election, with one third saying Romney will win.

"That may not translate directly into votes, but it is worth noting that in August of previous election years, the public accurately predicted the winner in 1996, 2000 and 2008, and in 2004 George W. Bush and John Kerry were tied," adds Holland.

Control of Congress is also up for grabs in November. According to the survey, 45% say the country would be better off if Congress were controlled by Democrats, with 39% saying things would be better if the GOP ran Capitol Hill.

The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International Tuesday and Wednesday (August 7-8), with 1,010 adults nationwide, including 911 registered voters, questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

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


Filed under: 2012 • CNN/ORC poll • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (430 Responses)
  1. Aces Full

    Bill Ayers, Frank Marshall Davis, Van Jones, Jeremiah Wright, Francis Fox Piven, Bernadine Dorn, Andy Stern, Derrick Bell, Jim Wallace, member of socialist New Party, International apology tour, 2,000 page health care bill that took a year to pass only after bribing his own party members, redistribution of wealth, social justice, Black Panthers, collective salvation, Black Liberation Theology, Critical Race Theory, Eric Holder, blame Bush and Republicans for everything, divisive class warfare rhetoric while he becomes a multi-millionaire in office and takes more campaign cash from Wall Street than anyone else, extensive Union cronyism, 9% unemployment, credit downgrade, Jon Corzine as his top financial advisor, White House security leaks, Solyndra, Siga Technologies and the Fast & Furious cover up – the “put the Community Organizer in charge to see what will happen” experiment is done – no amount of liberal media spin can change that.

    August 9, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  2. Fheal

    And why shouldn't Mitt Romney's unfavorable rating be going up.... the more you know about him, the more we see he's not a business builder.... he's a dismantling destroyer made rich upon the misery of the people, who were formerly employed by businesses he's either auctioned off or shipped overseas. It's not like he's ever worked hard to build anything at all, except for an image.

    August 9, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  3. josh

    CNN's hate articles are in full swing now! LOL

    August 9, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  4. Robert

    We will not tolerate another term for the commie Obama no matter what the american people say at the ballot box. Relecting Obama merely invalidates the whole process and we will step in and correct the situation.

    August 9, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  5. 4pease

    Much of the country does not like what the Republican party has become. They see in Romney a man who has surrendered his values to the far right.

    August 9, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  6. Shooter McGavin

    u laby – these people just want handouts from those who make money, that is why they are Obama lovers. A majority of American's don't want to do anything at all and while Obama is dictating, they don't have to! Now help me tell these people to go back to their Shanties.

    August 9, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  7. Bushy Walrus

    This GOP has nothing to do with Ronald Reagen. He's dead and long gone. I used to respect the GOP now I just find them scary and hateful and unelectable.

    August 9, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  8. dave

    I think Romney rating is a reflection of his own doing, negative ads have always been around and arent going away, people can see through them to some point, but when the candidate himself keeps stepping on himself..that effects his rating more than anything. republicans just need to start fielding better candidates that appeal to more than just white rich guys.

    August 9, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  9. lolo

    The haters just keep on hating. You know that you picked a loser in Romney, but are too embarrased to admit it. The man is a liar, tax cheat, unrealistic, has no convictions and a wimp. You are just to dumb to realize that no one has millions in their 401 or IRA account without cheating the system. No one makes millions not working. No one hides money overseas without an agenda to get them out of paying taxes. This man has been a politician for years, knew he wanted to be president and never thought to clean up his act? (Now who is the dummie?) No one will become president without showing those tax returns. Yes we know his father left him a pretty penny, but get real. He definitely fooled the tea party with that line I am a severely conservative crap. Just shows you that they will believe anything. As I said before who cares about the polls people just get out there and vote.

    August 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  10. Eric

    If 51% of this country believe we're headed down the right path with Obama, this country is in TROUBLE!!!

    August 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  11. Melissa

    I just don't believe this. I think CNN slants the vote. I don't know ONE single person who is for Obama. Not one. Is the Media going to pick our leader this time and not let the voters choose without slanted news?

    August 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  12. iceload9

    The only jump for Romney is his VP selection. Beyond that the GOP has him boxed in crazy right wing zealousness. Go GOP elect Obama.

    August 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  13. John

    It really is simple. The Romney tax plan increases taxes on people earning under 200,000. How? It cuts 20% across the board over what Bush did but eliminates all sorts of credits and exemptions. Why? NOT to settle the debt, instead to move that wealth into the over-200,000 crowd. Source? Congressional Budget Office and other 'nominally non-partisan' agencies.

    Is this consistent with his professional work? Bain worked the specialty of tax manipulation. Buy a failing company, squeeze the tax breaks for cash, sell the dregs. (Jobs never were an interest, they are as they should be just figures in the equation.) This is NOT a failing, he was just doing his job.)

    Personal: releases one year and refuses to release more. Why? Wife says 'you people have seen all you need.' Personally I have not, because that one year shows off-shore UN-American accounts (yeah, yeah, tell me good dog, WHO believes in America?!), it shows a 15% rate which is ridiculous for his earnings.

    What level of analysis does it take to make his moron supporters just shoot him instead?

    August 9, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  14. SHADES

    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Thursday shows Mitt Romney attracting support from 47% of voters nationwide, while President Obama earns the vote from 43%. Four percent (4%) prefer some other candidate, and five percent (5%) are undecided.

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  15. Eric

    This current administration has no integrity. How blind can you be not to see that?!

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  16. Dems Need to Grow a Pair

    Just goes to show us how gullible the American people really are,or, to put it another way, how effective Chicago poiltics (ie, dirty, deceptive) can be.. If you haven't figured out that Obama is nothing more than a suit,with a silver tongue, then there really is no hope for this country. Put your hand out and let the Obama culture of depending on government to advance your quality of life and your success be your goal.....Very sad indeed. Punish success reward dependency. Very sad!

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  17. SafeJourney

    Bob, bye, dont let the door hit you where the good Lord split you

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  18. Debby

    Cnn whats the breakdown of the registered voters, you can't go by just independents you probably only polled like 5 of them with the most as Dems. and the least with Republicans. Give the accurate breakdown of Dems. independents and Repub. not just percentages. What states to as no one that I know ever got polled in my state.

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  19. Shooter McGavin

    CNN skewing the polls in Obama's favor... Don't listen to the media bandwagon it is all false.

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    Trickle down poverty from Romney. Trickle up poverty from Obama. It makes little difference which political hack you pick. The outcome will be the same.

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  21. Juan

    CNN is unbiased. "The most trusted name in news." It's so great to have a major news outlet like CNN that does not have a hidden agenda to favor one politician over another (LOL)

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  22. Neal Kaye

    Romney up by 4pts in today's Rasmussen Poll which polls likely voters, not registered voters, 35 percent of whom will not vote. So, in reality, Romney is ahead.

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  23. lamestreammedia

    "It's likely that all of this is the result of the Democrats' efforts to paint Romney in an unflattering light, but so far Obama has avoided any blowback from that strategy, as evidenced by no rise in his unfavorable rating."
    The biased spin of the Obama-poodle state run media, including CNN, is working so far...still time to save the country from Obama, though, if enough Americans wake up...

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  24. anthony76

    Jerry
    I think the thing that bothers me is: Everyone is making a big deal over Romney's tax returns.

    the problem is he is already taking such advantage of a system skewed toward the filthy rich that he possibly pays zero taxes on millions. Is that fair? Is that supporting our country? For a party that complains about debt and cutting social safety nets, does it not trouble you that guys like this get off paying nothing? On top of that, he would then be in power to push legislator to favor himself and his rich donors even more so. This is the epitome of crooked conflict of interests... So its not a matter of whether he paid taxes legally, its a matter of how many loop holes and tax shelters is he afforded, while the average working middle class family barely gets a break at all...

    August 9, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  25. SHADES

    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Thursday shows Mitt Romney attracting support from 47% of voters nationwide, while President Obama earns the vote from 43%. Four percent (4%) prefer some other candidate, and five percent (5%) are undecided.

    depends on you you ask doesnt it CNN, Ill go with rasmussen, he's never wrong, you're in the tank

    August 9, 2012 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
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