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. Expat American

    ‘Trickle Down’ should be changed to ‘Tinkle down’.

    Because that is what the wealthy who pull Romney’s strings will keep on doing on the heads of the poor and middle class – no matter what party affiliation, race or religion.

    August 9, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. JGalt

    I trust Gallup allot more than CNN on polling Obama47%- Romney45%-1

    August 9, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  3. Reggiedw

    MIKEY...... Please show me where Fox has Obama up by 4% or is it your wishful thinking?

    August 9, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  4. John Vance

    These polls are meaningless. If nothing else they should be polling "likely" voters, not registered voters. In addition, the outcome in November is will be determined by the current "undecideds".
    The current negative ad wars are aimed at mobilizing the party bases to ensure they'll go to the polls, but hard hard-core dems or repubs will NOT control the outcome.
    I don't know how many undecideds there are out there, but I'm one of them and I'm starting to really dislike both of these candidates. The preposterous claims and ugliness don't resonate with people like me who genuinelly want to hear a rational, well-argued debate based and facts and honest, forthright answers to direct questions.
    Maybe I'm naive but I cannot believe that a candidate who tries to manage from a position of moderation and avoids uncompromising ideological committments to his/her "base" cannot be elected as President.
    As for me, I'm voting for Aaron Burr.

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  5. IF YOU SIGNED GROVER'S PLEDGE, YOU ARE A TRAITOR TO THE U.S.

    (In my Diddy voice) Take dat Take dat!!

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  6. AgonyF

    With all the old FOX readers who can't comment there, now all over here, CNN is really baiting them.

    King Trolling with their articles and do they ever get bites? Hook line and sinker. We'll it pays the bills.

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  7. Bob

    People don't like Romney because all he does is complain about Obama instead of offering leadership or a vision. And I'm a Republican! Obama gets my vote just because Romney's such a whiner.

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  8. MB

    Crap news.Media is misleading.Obama is pro Labor unions.That's the worst part.Let us elect New President every 4 years.Give them a chance.Every President is the same.

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  9. Son of a Gip

    Why hasn't CNN listed the political affiliations of those they interviewed? Is this another Pew Research Dem +19 poll?

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  10. frank

    i love good news

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  11. madness

    These forums are like a circus. Freaks, geeks and repuliclowns. I need a shower now.

    August 9, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  12. AL in West Palm Beach, FL

    Speaking of Hope and Change

    SuperD: CNN, Rasmussen recent poll out today has it Romney 47% Obama 43% one of you is horribly wrong. Obamaloney aint no 7% up on nothing.

    ----------------------------------------–

    IN 2008 Rasmussen had McCain beating Obama by 4 in almost every state McCain lost by at least 9. that's a -13 in my books so if Rasmussen says Romney is up by 4.....HE IS ACTUALLY DOWN 9.

    I'll take CNN's poll.

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. Romney for the Rich

    If you aren't rich- and your dumb enough to vote for Romney, its probably why you aren't rich. It doesnt 'trickle down Mitt'. Mitt are so out of touch- your campaign slogan should be, 'Let them eat cake!'

    He will take care of all his billionaire friends and you'll be wondering why you have no more Social Security-and you'll be lucky to get a job washing one of his 40 cars!

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  14. alexpdx

    Go Romney! Miss Teen South Carolina 2007 is proud of you!

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  15. gt

    take away california and new york....now what is it..

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  16. Shayne

    A CNN poll can hardly be trusted to be an accurate representation of the facts. Since about 2001 CNN has been a left leaning organization to shore up viewership after fox news began taking over. Other polls show a tie... who are the idi0ts who think Obama is doing a good job and should stay in office???

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  17. FahQtoo

    I wonder how the media wing of the Republican party (aka Fox "news") will spin this one?

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  18. Kevin

    7 points? Big deal. It's August.

    August 9, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  19. What he really meant....

    The economy is going to get better when/if Romney gets elected. Better for him, better for Sheldon Adleman, better for Bain Capital, better for lots of HBS grads. So, what is the problem?

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  20. bb

    What a classless POS Oblunder has turned out to be end of story. He said he wouldnt run if unemp was still 8% here he is showing his true polecat self spewing hate and people still want to vote for thid A-ho??? I dont get it this isnt about democraps or repubs this is about who has a better chance of saving the mess BILL CLINTON YES NAFTA ACT CLINTON PUT US IN I think romo has a much better chance

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  21. rosaadriana

    That is because Romney is a whiner..... whine...the dems are being mean to me. Whaaaaa

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  22. IF YOU SIGNED GROVER'S PLEDGE, YOU ARE A TRAITOR TO THE U.S.

    Willard!!!! You might want to release your taxes NOW!!!

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  23. Sooverthis

    Hopefully we will get rid of Willard once and for all! No more runs for the White House. His numbers will only get worse after the debates. Everytime he speaks its a mistake. Nobody knows his platform, and he flip/flops too much.

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  24. john

    Thanks to the media and the personal attacks from the Obama campaign team...meanwhile while diverting from the poor economic & jobs record of the current administration.

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  25. Matt

    The tax returns are fair game...it's not that Romney has done anything illegal, it's that showing his returns will ignite more debate about how the wealthy game the entire tax code and pay a less % of their income than middle-America. It's just a fact, and the GOP don't want to have that debate. The last 3 1/2 years have been one, long negative attack ad against Barack Obama trying to clean up this disaster of trickle-down which has wrecked this country for decades. Tough luck, Repubs.

    August 9, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
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