Poll: Obama expands advantage over Romney
September 9th, 2012
08:39 PM ET
2 years ago

Poll: Obama expands advantage over Romney

(CNN) - Three days after the Democratic convention wrapped up, President Barack Obama opened up his largest margin over Mitt Romney since early July in Gallup's daily tracking poll.

According to the poll released Sunday, Obama has 49% among registered voters nationwide, while Romney has 44%.

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The survey was conducted September 2-8, a time window that included the entirety of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina-as well as two days before and two days after the event.

During the party gathering, major leaders, including former President Bill Clinton, gave prime time speeches on why voters should elect Obama to a second term. The president himself capped off the week Thursday night with a final address.

"If you turn away now - if you buy into the cynicism that the change we fought for isn't possible, well, change will not happen," Obama said, depicting a scenario in which special interests and conservative politicians run Washington and the country. "... Only you can make sure that doesn't happen. Only you have the power to move us forward."

The same poll showed Obama with only a one-point margin (47%-46%) one week ago as he headed into the convention, which came a week after the Republican convention in Tampa, Florida.

Responding to the new numbers, Romney's pollster Neil Newhouse warned against getting "too worked up about the latest polling."

"While some voters will feel a bit of a sugar-high from the conventions, the basic structure of the race has not changed significantly. The reality of the Obama economy will reassert itself as the ultimate downfall of the Obama Presidency, and Mitt Romney will win this race," Newhouse said in a statement.

According to a CNN/ORC International Poll released Tuesday, Romney received a one point bounce after the GOP event, going from 47% to 48% compared to Obama's 49%.

The last time Obama held a five-point margin over Romney occurred on July 1, when the president had 48% and Romney had 43%.

While it's not unusual for a candidate to get a modest boost in the polls after a convention, a senior Obama campaign official said last week that big swings are becoming less common due to conventions now falling so late in the election year.

Speaking with CNN reporters in Charlotte, the official said candidates no longer get double-digit bounces, like the 16-point bump Clinton received after the 1992 convention in New York. Because of higher interest early on and long primary seasons, the "process is fundamentally different" now so that voters get exposed to the candidates much sooner and form their opinions before the conventions.

For the poll, Gallup surveyed approximately 3,050 registered voters by telephone. The sampling error is plus or minus two percentage points.


– CNN's Tom Cohen contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2012 • Democratic National Convention • Polls • President Obama
soundoff (219 Responses)
  1. Larry L

    Independents see through the lies and the false promises of the Romney campaign. They know the Republicans caused the recession and worked to prevent a recovery. They know Romney and "Lyin-Ryan" are nothing but a front for the fat-cats. They know Romney and Ryan will try to kill Medicare and Social Security.

    September 9, 2012 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  2. Betty

    Rasmusseum Poll more accurate.

    September 9, 2012 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  3. Brian

    I believe most in the United States of America know in their hearts that our political system is broken. Both parties have become so polarized there is no common ground left. Even the few politicians in the two parties looking for workable answers cannot work together for joint ideas with each other, because they would be ostracized by their party leaders. If they wish any chance at a second term, they will tow the party lines. How does any of this help America? Extremism never helped anything, just ask the Germans from WWII.

    Why does CNN or any of the other major networks never talk about our broke system? I believe it is because they like it. It sells! People want to watch controversy. They want to see hate and anger and people yelling at each other. They do not want to see a working government, because who would want to watch that? Democrats and Republicans all say it is the other guys fault, but in truth it is “system’s” fault. Money drives the world, and I am sure most would agree. Good government and happy TV viewer’s means Happy Days reruns and no watching CCN, CNBC or FOX NEWS.

    September 9, 2012 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  4. Larry

    Obama-Biden 2012 The only sensible choice we have. The last Prez damn near left us ALL in tents eating grass. Lets not go backward. Foward, Into the future.

    September 9, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  5. JC in Western U.S.

    I'm very pleased, but not holding my breath. If Obama is stlll + 5 a week from now, I'll start breathing. And if the RCP average starts moving significantly, I will keep breathing. This race is going to be tighter than '08, I'm sure of it. But Romney barely got a bump which makes Obama's bump better by comparison. I am satisfied.

    September 9, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  6. Blossom

    American's aren't buying Romney/Ryan's BS! If he even wants a shot at the presidency he'd better cough up those tax returns. If he doesn't we'll KNOW that he's hiding something pretty damning! Americans want specifics on just HOW he'll do all the stuff he's promising and WHO will be the fall guys for the tax breaks for his rich buddies!

    September 9, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  7. Poll Drama

    I'm usually skeptical of political polls, but this one has tracking data that shows an underlying trend that Romney has peaked already; voters are starting to realize that there's not much else to see. It could also be that voters are thinking that given the poor choices, Obama is the devil they know. The drama continues.

    September 9, 2012 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  8. Catmandew

    Polls dont mean anything MITT the best way forward OBAMA failing ideas

    September 9, 2012 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  9. 351969

    The Tax/Draft evader and his lying pet weasel Eddie Munster are going to get buried.

    September 9, 2012 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  10. MMcMahon

    CNBC.com compared the S&P 500 performance under the last 6 Presidents (3 Dems & 3 Repubs) during their first 43 months in office. The results show the S&P performed best under President Obama and back-up Bill Clinton’s arithmetic:

    68% – Barack Obama
    17% – GW Bush
    51% – Bill Clinton
    45% – GHW Bush
    23% – Ronald Reagan
    20% – Jimmy Carter

    Recall in his mostly adlib speech before DNC2012, Bill Clinton used arithmetic to show that since 1961, Dems had the White House 24 yrs vs. Repubs for 28 yrs. Over that time, 66 million American private sector jobs were created:

    24 million jobs by Repubs
    42 million jobs by Dems

    September 9, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  11. Trevor

    Poll schmoll, let's just find out in November. I'm tired of all these polls.

    September 9, 2012 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  12. tj@kc

    Did axlerod approve this one?

    September 9, 2012 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  13. Zahir Mohamed

    Have you thought of RO MONEY? MR MONEYMAN!

    September 9, 2012 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  14. coolie

    Good way to go President.

    September 9, 2012 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  15. LIP

    Looks like he is not only up in the polls, but he is dominating the Ticker spots as well. Oops, thats just media favoritism though, isn't it? So many photos and good things per CNN exclusively about Obama is bound to boast one's popularity in the polls.

    September 9, 2012 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  16. marilynn

    delighted to hear it. Mitt Romney hasn't got a backbone; all he knows is how to flip flop on important issues because he wants to be President. I understand his wife had to talk him into running this time; maybe she really wants to be First Lady!

    September 9, 2012 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  17. james

    As you can see...America is coming to it's senses.

    September 9, 2012 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  18. m

    I can't imagine why anyone would vote for Romney and side kick Ryan – these 2 have lied constantly and not shown any clear path forward about anything – they just talk in buzzwords and labels. OK 12 million jobs – from where – where did figure come from – atleast tell the people what the plan is – or is it a figure straight from Romney's head. People are not going to accept any B S from anyone – tell the truth or perish at the polls. Romney's campaign have said they don't plan to to tell the truth and don't care about fact checking.. that implies they plan to tell lies to get elected – keep at it ...

    September 9, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  19. MashaSobaka

    Good news for the United States. Let's keep the momentum going, folks. We have come too far in equality, in healthcare, in social progress, to switch gears now. Say no to the economic policies that screwed us over in the first place. Don't buy into the myth that treating corporations like first-class citizens is the best way to heal the economy. We have too much to lose.

    September 9, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  20. dm nash

    ....and after this mornings Face the Nation (Ryan) and Meet the Press (Romney) it's only obvious why they've been keeping interviews to a minimum. Romney's smug enough to be talking about his 2nd term, what??? Because he won't be able to get everything done, what??? Obamas' foreign policy is "biggest mistake" in Iran – but I'll do the same thing he's already done, what??? Ryan states he has more foreign affairs experience that Obama did (after Obama was on foreign affairs committee) – why, because he voted to send troops and went to some funerals, what??? Romney likes some of Obamacare, what??? No specifics on specifics, what??? Ryan says he didn't vote for what he not only voted for but insisted on, what??? Ryan confused his marathon time now because it was 23 years ago (not 22 years) and he had back issues so he forgot what??? (btw – my sister ran one 30 some years ago and then attended her wedding shower in heels – and did it in better time than Ryan – how could I forget! lol)
    By time the debates roll around there will be a wider margin...and after – FORWARD 2012

    September 9, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    truth prevails over lies...............

    September 9, 2012 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  22. togirl

    hope it continues to expand! Romney has nothing to offer America. He wants to be POTUS, but hasn't got a clue how to lead or stand on principle. One day it's this principle, and the next day it's another. He doesn't know how to take a stand and STICK with it.

    September 9, 2012 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  23. JohnRJohnson

    This "expanding margin" will turn into the Grand Canyon following the presidential debates. Romney will find himself in a situation where he will not be able to pull off his usual gymnastics. And, on questions concerning foreign policy, he will come off as badly as Sarah Palin did.

    September 9, 2012 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  24. Reaper

    The proliferation of information in the internet age may also be a casual factor for low digit numbers since the 96. Though a faster spread of information, campaigns are not able to sequester populations with propaganda due to a free & fast exchange of information. If this factor is contributing enough, Obama's bounce suggests that even more people than usual are agreeing with his message and/or disagreeing with Romney's than in elections since 96..

    September 9, 2012 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  25. annette

    sometimes telling the truth previals over lies – just saying. fact check list has more lies and pants on fire on the romney side more than on the obama side.

    September 9, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
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