Poll: Who will win Wednesday's debate?
October 1st, 2012
11:30 AM ET
2 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. EVN

    Mittens can't differentiate himself from Bush. About all we can really expect is more fumbling that his handlers witll then have to respin and tell us all what Mittens really meant. He's botched his one foreign diplomacy jaunt virtually at every point his plane landed. He's alienated entire sections of the country in less than a few sentences. He has no concrete plans and can only degrade his opponent all the while offering nothing of substance. Funny thing is that most people are already over believing much of what the GOP has to say, and there aren't enough white male conservatives who are well off to swing this election for the GOP.

    October 1, 2012 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  2. gen hidari

    the scholars of American history all agree that Obama is one of the biggest losers among the past presidents. First, he's incapable of passing bills;moreover, he has this record of least passed bill in history, second, he doesn't know how to use his position as a president, he doesn't know how to exercise veto as a power to make republicans cooperate with him, lastly, he's not a world leader figure. In his administration, America, the world's political and economical leader has been downgraded by the Standard & Poor. What does this mean? His administration is worst than Bush, because during Bush at least America was still at the top even only in the credit rating system.

    October 1, 2012 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  3. Ambrose Smith

    Mitt should use the Palin approach and give shout outs to elementary school kids to kill time while searching for something to say. Throw in a few cute zingers like "say it ain't so Joe".....and toss in a few winkety winks!

    October 1, 2012 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  4. Joseph

    Well.............. if it aint gonna be that one than its gonna be that one. Prove me wrong.

    October 1, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  5. Alois

    Freeloader obama is a loser now ,was a loser when he was installed in the W.H.and nomatter what the outcome of all the debates deadbeat obama will always be a loser and the past 4 years are proof. We will remove that incompetent fool in november.

    October 1, 2012 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  6. ThinkSustain

    Wait until the Republicans see this – Unbelievable, Very Powerful, just when I thought the truth no longer existed. Watch "Bishop E.W. Jackson Message" on YouTube. FREE AT LAST – FREE AT LAST! Pass it on. It's going viral.

    October 1, 2012 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  7. John Joyce

    I agree that Romney told half of the american people
    Were leeches.

    Obama 2012

    October 1, 2012 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    Obama you go, I'm for you all the way.

    October 1, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  9. GaryDMN

    I wish I could get my liberal friends to bet me on the bias during the debates, but none of them will dare. They won't bet on the outcome of the Presidential election either. They would have all willing to bet on Obama in 2008. Now their favorite response is "I don't want to talk about it". Hope and change.

    October 1, 2012 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  10. roy

    The first and all debates will be won by the best BSer and to whom the press picks.

    October 1, 2012 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  11. ralph Petrillo

    In early voting 25% have already voted.

    October 1, 2012 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  12. jane

    I think B4Cons has pretty much summed it up. Well said.

    October 1, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  13. jane

    @Rick McDaniel and all the others on these threads crying about the liberally biased media – - you mean the media that is owned by right wing, Republican corporate bigwigs, like Reptile Murdoch, e.g., CNN, TBS, FOX????? Give it up – no one is buying that sad line anymore.....

    October 1, 2012 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  14. Roy Mustang

    @don in albuquerque

    2009: 139,877,000 jobs
    2011: 139,869,000 jobs
    = -8,000 net jobs

    I bet you fell for that 4.6 million net jobs created baloney the Obama campaign is put out.

    October 1, 2012 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  15. momlove

    Editor of Harvard Review who never wrote a thing to be "reviewed" Obama is an empty headed, arrogant, telepromptered, autocratic, juvenille, billionaire coddling, misanthophic, henpecked, fake

    October 1, 2012 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  16. Kathy

    Okay, so, what has happened between yesterday and today that has evened the polls? Absolutely, nothing, except that the media thinks there ought to actually be a close race, so they'll have something interesting to report on. So, now, they're abandoning all the polls in the toss up states where President Obama is ahead and decided the only way to make it look closer is to start reporting on different polls. We'll hear nothing about who is ahead in those states and they'll only report on whatever poll makes them look neck and neck. So, all of a sudden, in one day, the race is now close? Yeah, right? It's all up to the media what happens. They can make someone look good or bad. This is ridiculous how they're trying to make us believe now that it's a close race....In one day. Nothing has changed as far as the polls go. They have just backed off on reporting the truth in order to manipulate the race.

    October 1, 2012 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  17. Turth Sayer

    amazing that obozo has the nerve to down play his ability to defeat romney in the first debate. this way, if he wins, it's a great thing, but if he loses, he will blame it on romney having more time and money to practice with "just like we knew he would, therefore, i still win, because i said it first."

    October 1, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  18. DEbbie

    It doesn't matter who wins or loses.We already know for whom we are going to vote. CNN do not waste your time.

    October 2, 2012 12:09 am at 12:09 am |
  19. DEbbie

    The polls are nothing

    October 2, 2012 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  20. DENNA

    @truth hurts: Ignorance hurts more. You need to go to school (notice I didn't say BACK to school) and study civics, poltical science and democracy. You are woefully and inexcusably ignorant.

    October 2, 2012 12:17 am at 12:17 am |
  21. JoeP29

    Just vote for Romney if you want America to be better, plain and simple.

    October 2, 2012 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  22. BADGUY

    Romney and Ryan's "plan" will CUT taxes on the Super Rich....AND....INCREASE military spending. They will EXPLODE the deficit. They will ALSO RAISE taxes on the lower and middle classes....AND...gut Social Security, Medicare and Obamacare. They will PANIC the lower and middle classes and consumer spending will CEASE! Businesses will CLOSE! Unemployment will SOAR! The economy will COLLAPSE. Mitt and Paul will drive us into a DEPRESSION!

    October 2, 2012 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
  23. j3badger

    Its so sad that our country is so divided to the point that half of the nation will be angry no matter what. This country needs to decide where it wants to go and then we need to go their together. If Obama wins, once again nothing will get passed, simply b/c of his unfavorability among republicans. We need a president who can make realistic compromise.

    October 2, 2012 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  24. dave

    Its easy to say that you dont think anyone will win or lose when you know you are going to be the loser... romney is a loser and will prove it in this debate!

    OBAMA 2012!!!

    October 2, 2012 01:41 am at 1:41 am |
  25. Larry IN Houston

    I do agree with the displeasure of the direction this country is in. Which is why I am voting for every democrat on the ticket.... At least they are trying to do something, and they understand how you make this country succeed: Feed the Middle Class, and the rest will benefit. The 1% paying 2-3% more in taxes will net 3-5% more once the middle class is buying things other than essentials again. The Poor will be doing better because the billions on middle-class americans will donate to them more than the 1% can, when they can affford to do so.

    Feed the middle class, regardless if they are blue collar manfacturers or white collar office workers. Think about the human body when freezing... while the appendages are getting colder, the core/torso actually gets warmer. Take care of the core, and the core will not need as much from the extremes so they will end up supporting them.

    Vote Democrat – 2012 ( for the "working" middle class)

    October 2, 2012 02:34 am at 2:34 am |
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