Poll: Who will win Wednesday's debate?
October 1st, 2012
11:30 AM ET
6 years ago

Poll: Who will win Wednesday's debate?

Washington (CNN) - Two days before the first debate between President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney, a new poll indicates that most Americans see the GOP challenger as the underdog in the first showdown.

According to a ABC News/Washington Post national poll released Monday, 55% of likely voters say they think the president will win the debate, with 31% saying that Romney will be victorious. The findings on this question from the new survey are in-line with a CNN/ORC International poll conducted right after the Democratic convention earlier this month, where by 59%-34%, likely voters said Obama rather than the former Massachusetts governor would be more likely to do a better job in the October showdowns.

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Wednesday night's debate in Denver, Colorado is the first of three between the president and Romney. Vice President Joe Biden and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, Romney's running mate, face off once as well.

According to the Washington Post poll, 49% of likely voters say if the election were held today, they'd vote for the president, with 47% saying they'd vote for Romney. The president's two point margin is within the survey's sampling error. A new Politico/George Washington University Battleground poll also released Monday also indicates it 49% for Obama and 47% for Romney among likely voters nationwide.

The two new surveys follow a Fox News poll released late last week which indicated a five point advantage for the president. A CNN Poll of Polls which averages all three surveys together puts Obama at 49% and Romney at 46% among likely voters.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted Sept. 26-29, with 1,001 adults nationwide, including 929 registered voters and 813 likely voters, questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error for likely voters is plus or minus four percentage points.

The Politico/George Washington University Battleground poll was conducted Sept. 24-27, with 1,000 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Also see:

- Getting ready for Wednesday's showdown

- Ann Romney to rally while Obama preps for debate across town

- Obama to hit trail after debate

- Romney hits Obama on foreign policy in weekly podcast

- Obama talks housing market in weekly address

Filed under: Mitt Romney • Polls • President Obama • Presidential Debate
soundoff (206 Responses)
  1. Mike

    It does not latter who wins the debate – everyone has already decided who they will vote for. Right? Obama Man for me!

    October 1, 2012 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  2. don in albuquerque

    OK for those on the slow learning curve lets recount:
    Obama took an economy in free fall, bleeding hundreds of thousands of jobs a month and reversed it.
    Obama gave us health care reform which now even the MittWitt is saying there are parts he likes.
    Obama promised an end to the Shrub Iraq War-Did it.
    During his campaign Obama promised he would go back to Afganistan and end it. On our way out the door.
    Obama promised equal pay for women-Ledbetter act.
    And on and on ad naueum.
    But what do we hear from the right;;
    He's spending us into oblivion–Fact-spent less then Bush 1 &2, Less then Clinton, and not even half what the Great God Ronnie Raygun spent.
    He lies–About four hundred filibusters will give you an answer to that.
    He soft on Terrorist–Ask Bin Ladin about that and three Somali pirates. (Oops you can't. They're dead.)
    He has not brought us jobs-Turnabout has been slow but consistant.
    Before he is even sworn into office the Bagger Party is swearing to make him fail–EVEN at the cost of our own economy again with more filibusters then in our entire history.

    Yup–Only one reason they don't like Obama. You figure it out. The rest of the world has, and we do not look good.
    Obama 2012–Yeah!!! The only responsible answer. And clean the GOP out of the House and Senate so it can start working for the people again and not the gentry.

    October 1, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  3. BG

    Romney can give himself a boost if he can clearly articulate differences between himself and G.W. Bush. There is a reason why Bush was not at the Repub. Convention and a reason why he is not campaigning for Romney anywhere – The Repubs don't want him around – he's like kryptonite to them and the AMerican majority don't want any resemblence of Bush in the White House again. Mitt needs to show how he is different.

    October 1, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  4. truth hurts

    @truthhurts-you wouldn't know it if it bit you in the backside. Nice try, but your economic illiteracy ranks right up there with Mitt's.
    wow, lot of facts there to prove me wrong. The usual libtard insult response. Par for the course. It is about all we get from Obama as well. Things not going well, not working? Time to attack the evil rich people to create some smoke. Facts and numbers are very inconvenient things to Democrats these days.

    October 1, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  5. zakada

    Why would be want the loser candidates from the Libertarian and Green Party? Romney has already beat Libertarian Paul so why would we want to have that loser candidate in the debates. Vote Romney and shut up. Get smarte like me and vote only Tea Bagger candidates.

    October 1, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  6. B4Cons

    The Past President of Harvard Law Review Debating the guy who recently asked why Airplanes don't have Operable Windows.

    October 1, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  7. Blossom89

    I'm with you on that MIke. Romney basically told half of the American public that they were 'leeches and free loaders' when they were just going by the SAME tax laws that HE did! I'll be at the polls in my home state and my family and I will ALL be voting for Obama!

    October 1, 2012 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  8. Wake up People!

    I'm truly getting sick of polls. But I'm still wondering where the right wing whack jobs are that were saying just this morning, the polls were unfair. Sad.

    OBAMA 2012!

    October 1, 2012 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  9. Larry L

    The question "are we better off than 4 years ago" is indeed foolish. A more intelligent question would be based on the economic reality of the time. The recession had great momentum and a very strong downward trajectory. All of the factors were going south fast. The Republican side of the aisle openly worked to prevent progress – as they stated in their "only goal". A better question might be "Given the worst recession of 30 years was it even possible completely recover when Republicans obstructed all progress?". Could any coach win a championship with half of the team actually trying to lose?

    October 1, 2012 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  10. C-Ray

    Obama is going to clean Mitthead's clock.

    October 1, 2012 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  11. Terri

    @ don
    love your post, man! I feel the same!

    October 1, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  12. Terri

    @truth hurts
    you need to read Don's post – that is the most concise and clearest argument that President deserves and will win 4 more years!

    October 1, 2012 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  13. aka weezy

    I think if romney out speaks obama he can still win the race this isnt over till its over so go romney people need to stop hating on romney i think romney can get the job done romney2012

    October 1, 2012 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  14. Gurgyl

    This election needs cameras– mitt the twit should not cheat like bush the thush.....

    October 1, 2012 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  15. "Chicken-Hawk" Romney & Lyin'Ryan

    That photo of Romney relaxing on the beach of France to avoid the Vietnam War is burned into my memory. I spent the time watching friends die in South Vietnam.

    As a veteran I really don't expect politicians to have military service – we all have ways to contribute. However, I DO NOT want some spoiled rich boy playing like a tough Warrior when other people's kids will die. The President is doing a great job as Commander-In-Chief and terrorist fear his name. But the President isn't a "chicken-hawk" playing games like "Mr. Mission Accomplished" Bush. No more Republicans playing Soldier!

    October 1, 2012 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  16. Dolan

    Nobody can lie without blinking an eye so Obama definitely has the upper hand.

    October 1, 2012 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  17. Marie MD

    President Obama hands down. The twit's campaign has NOTHING to bring to the table.
    Maybe he can have that one non serving son of his sit behind them with the "believe in America" sign and have his wife sit there looking bored too.
    The man who told 47% of our population that they are leeches and just want a handout should be sent back to CA and that elevator beach house of his strapped to the top of his private plane!

    October 1, 2012 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  18. Vito Corleone

    I will find it extremely entertaining when they ask Romney loaded questions but let Obama sail by with the easy ones like they did for the last election. I hope the FCC shuts down the lies of the mainstream media also. Obama doesn't even know how many states there are so how can he win a debate. He lost horribly to Hillary and will lose to Romney too. Sorry people. No more Obama Bux to pay for your Cadillac Escalade anymore. You might actually have to get a job now.

    October 1, 2012 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  19. AZDem

    I'm waiting for MItt to unveil has plans for the nation.

    October 1, 2012 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  20. Charles

    I am a die hard Democrat. I will go on record and say, if Mitt Romney tells the U.S. public that he watches " Here Comes Honey Boo Boo." I will vote for him.

    October 1, 2012 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  21. CBR

    This is all hype and very little substance. Why can't we just see what happens during the debate on Wednesday. To come with preconceived notions is wrong. Come and listen and then read their remarks on line before deciding what you liek or dislike.

    October 1, 2012 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  22. corpsman

    Nate Silver was the most accurate poll analyst in 2008. Right now he's showing:

    Mitt Romney Barack Obama
    217.9 -10.7 since Sept. 23 320.1 +10.7 since Sept. 23
    (Electoral vote 270 to win)

    October 1, 2012 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  23. Sodapophead

    Anytime Mitt the twit gets boxed in, he giggle's like a little school girl, watch for it.

    October 1, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  24. clarke

    Until the last vote is counted on election day, you will all have your answer.

    October 1, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  25. teej

    Oh the things we tell ourselves to stave off cognitive dissonance")

    October 1, 2012 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
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