October 28th, 2012
04:40 PM ET
2 years ago

Looking at the polls & state of the campaign in the homestretch

(CNN) – It may be hard to figure out whether President Barack Obama or GOP nominee Mitt Romney is leading in the presidential race - but a panel with CNN's chief political correspondent Candy Crowley on "State of the Union" made it clear that it will be a close election.

Republican pollster Bill McInturff said pollsters could not predict who would win based on recent polling, saying the race was "(within) a 1-point margin with …10 days left" and that it would be "hubris" to predict victory for either candidate. However, McInturff did predict we'll see the largest difference in voting by gender and ethnicity ever in a modern presidential election, with women and minorities supporting Obama. He also dismissed a recent Associated Press poll showing Obama and Romney tied among women voters with 47% each, calling it an "outlier."

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

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

That said, McInturff said it was important to look at the trends of the race, noting that Romney has improved in polling in every swing state since the first presidential debate and has kept his gains in almost all of those states since. He also said that Romney was leading with independents in nearly every Ohio poll since the debate and pointed to "historic low" consumer confidence. Based on these factors, said McInturff, the race was moving Romney's way.

Joining McInturff on the panel were Democratic pollster Anna Greenberg and Time magazine Executive Editor Mike Duffy.

Greenberg agreed that the election was hard to predict based on the national polls, but suggested it was a different story based on the average of state polls and early voting. Both of these, said Greenberg, favored Obama. She disagreed that there was a trend toward Romney, saying the polls "have been pretty stable," and thus the ground game was very important.

She also disagreed with McInturff regarding a large gender gap, saying Obama has been "surprisingly competitive" among men while at the same time struggling among women. Only about 51% to 52% of women support the president, said Greenberg, but only 51% of men support Romney.

McInturff said that was "totally wrong," pointing out that Obama was losing among white men by 30 points. He said Obama would lose among men by "a double-digit margin."

Duffy said the only poll that would be believable at this point would be on Election Day, but expressed surprise at how many states seem to be very close. Duffy said the only way something certain could be said about the direction of the race would be "if you froze the race," which is obviously not possible.

However, Duffy pointed out that white men, even those without a college education, were actually helping Obama in Ohio. Duffy attributed the support of these men in Ohio and in other industrial Midwest states to the auto bailout.

"It will be ironic," said Duffy, "if at the end of the day, it's white men who make a difference (for Obama in those states)."

Greenberg agreed with Duffy, but also pointed to those states' economies being better than the national economy.

As for what to expect in the campaign's final days, Duffy said that neither campaign had yet made its closing arguments, as both are still primarily concentrating on attacking each other.

Said Duffy, "(It) tells you just how much further we have to go in 10 days."

Also on the CNN Political Ticker

– Obama courts young voters in MTV interview

– Coulter stands by use of controversial word to describe Obama

– A gridiron battleground

– Micro-targeting offers clues to early vote leads


Filed under: 2012 • Polls
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Rick McDaniel

    The state of the campaign, is the incumbent is dropping, and the challenger is going up.

    Time to get a real President, and not a liar, conniver, and deceiver.

    October 28, 2012 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  2. Mike

    Romney is a lying, coward snake in the grass. Did you see how he slithered away from the press when he was asked about Murdock? What a coward! Agree with Murdock or not, at least he is man enough to speak his mind.That snake. Wait a minute. Calling Romney a snake is an insult to snakes. Snakes have spines. This coward is more like a spineless worm. How anyone can even stomach the idea of voting for this clown is beyond me.

    October 28, 2012 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  3. REDFIRESTORM

    too bad "dr. gallup" wasn't invited in that panel discussion -- best to keep the intrigue alive to last minute

    October 28, 2012 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  4. Ron L- Mich

    How can anyone support Mr. Romney??? Talk about a complete lack of character and spine this man has shown...
    Where shall I begin:
    He first supported a womens right to chose – then became a severe conservative Pro Life person
    He believed the car industry should be allowed to go bankrupt using the private sector (that is in a panic at the time) to guarantee loans. This would have not happen and there would be no GM, no Chrysler, and about 1,000,0000 fewer jobs,
    He says he is going to cut tax rates 20% across the board and restructure the tax system making sure the rich pay no more than they pay today which equates to the eliminaton of deductions that benefit the middle class.
    He claims he has been successful in business and knows how to turn this economy around – when Bain bought a company and could not turn it around they sold it,kept all the money to themselves and fired the employees with no severence pay, or insurance!!! So, how does that relate to running the government?
    He was a successful Governor able to reach across the aisle and work with Democrats – He is losing in the polls to President Obama by 30+ points in that state and signed over 600 vetoes at that time!!!
    He is going to increase spending on the military – at the same time he is going to cut the deficit
    He is going to cut the deficit – If you read his plan it does not address the deficit until he wins a 2nd term!!
    He clearly stated he believed 47% of the American public do not take responsibilty for their lives and are government dependent!!
    I could go on but I think you get my point... How can ANYONE believe a word he says!!!
    I DON"T, he is one of the most AMORAL politicians I have seen in my lifetime and will say anything to win!!
    He lacks the CHARACTER to be the President of the United States

    October 28, 2012 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  5. mcskadittle

    I guess it will all come down to Tagg Romneys voting machines in Ohio

    October 28, 2012 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  6. Larry L

    Now is the time to look at the character of the candidates. Mitt Romney is constantly shown by the fact checkers to be a pathological liar – as clearly stated by Newt Gingrich in the Primary. He refuses to give any specifics to prove his wild claims and promises. He has flip-flopped on every issue including abortion, gun control, healthcare, taxes, Medicare, his proposals for war, women's rights, immigration, and education. His career at Bain Capital was about vulture capitalism – not building stronger companies and more jobs. He's polling about 20% in Massachusetts where he was Governor and they really know him. He's still hiding his tax returns. His money is offshore. What more does a voter need to know?

    October 28, 2012 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  7. Ron L- Mich

    Oh, and one other thing: IF the Republicans were to keep control of the House and win the Senate the EXTREME right of the Repubican party would have even more influence. Mr. Romney would be obsessed with a second term and would not have the spine to veto legislation that would restrict or turn back womens rights. Programs that benifit the poor and struggling Americans in the need of the most helped wll see their opportunities diminish significantly because they think 80% of those in that situation are there because of laziness.So, take it from them and they will HAVE to work harder. And just think about Mitt Romney picking the next one or two Supreme court justices with the ultra right threatening not to back him for a 2nd trim...HE WILL BE PUTTY IN THERE HANDS!!! These are VERY SCARY situations.

    October 28, 2012 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  8. curious

    This election will empower the extreme elements of both partys. The political battles won't end on Nvember 07.

    October 28, 2012 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  9. Brian Mouland

    Polls are for dogs- John Diefenbaker, Former Prime Minister,Canada

    October 28, 2012 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  10. NameTeri

    Blue collar workers do to remember how republicans tried to break union labor in Wisconsin and Ohio.
    And women out there do you really want the government dictating your reproduction choices?

    Just sayin'

    October 28, 2012 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  11. Wade

    Let me make it easier. Romney will win by a landslide.

    October 28, 2012 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  12. Ed1

    Candy your show should be called the State of the Left nothing else.

    October 28, 2012 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  13. Bill2000

    Polls can't predict turnout nor voting machine hacking

    October 28, 2012 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  14. jjjj

    This is just too funny. When the emptysuit wasting the air in my WH was ahead in the polls, the dem tv stations were all about those polling results. They were even urging Romney to give up the race. Now that the messiah has severly slipped, the excuse is that we no longer can count on polls. How is it that with a dem- it's always one sorry lame excuse after another?

    October 28, 2012 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  15. heeey

    We had an election in Canada last year and not one poll predicted the outcome, they were out by more than 30%. This land line polling is a joke.

    October 28, 2012 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  16. Namelisa

    Obama will win a female voter in va just made my 6th donatio in 6 werks 15000 at rally in richnond

    October 28, 2012 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  17. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It is certainly not like it was 4 years. Obama is going to squeak a win now.

    October 28, 2012 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  18. Christopher Reid

    Intolance and hatred are evident in remarks made by former Senator Sununu .

    October 28, 2012 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  19. An objective observer

    I hope and pray that Obama wins... he is so much better for the country than Romney who doesn't understand the middle class as he has never been a middle class person.. Please , please vote for Obama... Thank you..

    October 28, 2012 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  20. LIP

    Here is Candy telling everyone how she corrected Romney in one of those unprecedented moments, saying that he was wrong about what Obama said and then after the audience (millions of people) were gone, she admitted she had it wrong, but by that time it really didn't matter, did it. She should have been fired publically for how she behaved. A black eye to all moderators!

    October 28, 2012 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  21. NameEze.Ganzagan

    The beggining of the pres.Race pres.Obama was up 8 to 10 after three debates over now they are neck and neck,simple physics question is ,who got the momentum?E=mvsquare.The answer might be landslide.

    October 28, 2012 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  22. loops808

    The Obama administration is using some of the most obscene ads ever. What happened to the era of cvility and hope and change?

    October 28, 2012 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  23. Name Penguin

    How can anyone believe tax breaks for small business will result in more hiring. A well run business hires as few workers as is needed to provide the goods or services the business provides. New hires would be made only if the person hired will make the business more money than it costs to pay the employee. All profit goes to the business owner and he pays tax only on profit. Any tax reduction only goes into his pocket. You can argue he should be allowed to keep more of the profit, but to say he creates jobs with that profit is a flat out lie

    October 28, 2012 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  24. Indysgirl

    Only if Romney pulls a George W and messes with the votes. I'm betting we will have some controversy that will give him the win.

    October 28, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  25. Mark

    Don't believe anything a politician says cuz he'll say whatever he thinks might get him elected. Go only on what he has done in the past. On that basis, Obama cannot hold a candle to Romney. Romney brought health care to all as Governor and did in a bipartisan way while balancing the budget. He was uber successful as a businessman and with the Olympics. Obama had no real accomplishments prior to being president and has been mediocre at best since.

    October 28, 2012 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
1 2