Poll: Obama-Romney race tied; Obama supporters appear more energized
June 1st, 2012
04:00 PM ET
9 years ago

Poll: Obama-Romney race tied; Obama supporters appear more energized

Washington (CNN) - The race for the White House remains very close, according to a new national poll, partly because neither President Barack Obama nor Republican challenger Mitt Romney have a clear advantage on issue number one - the economy.

A CNN/ORC International survey released Friday also indicates that Obama supporters are more energized right now than those backing Romney.

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According to the poll, 49% of registered voters say that if the November election were held today, they would vote for Obama, while 46% say they would cast a ballot for Romney, the unofficial GOP presidential nominee. The president's three point margin is within the survey's sampling error. Obama had a nine point advantage in CNN's last national poll, which was conducted in early April.

"Which candidate better understands how the economy works? That's a tie as well - 45% pick Obama, 45% choose Romney," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

According to the survey, one in five questioned say neither candidate can fix the economy, with another one in five saying the economy will recover regardless of who wins in November. Among the rest, once again there is no clear advantage - 31% say economic conditions will improve only if Romney wins; 28% think things will get better only if Obama stays in office.

The poll was conducted Tuesday through Thursday, before the release Friday morning of the May unemployment numbers. According to the disappointing report from the Labor Department, the nation's unemployment level edged up to 8.2% last month, with only 69,000 jobs created in May.

According to the poll, the economy, by far, remains issue number one. Fifty-two percent said that it's the most important issue facing the country today. The deficit, at 18% is a distant second.

Over the past few weeks, the Obama campaign has been hammering Romney's business experience at Bain Capital, the private equity firm he co-founded. Did their strategy work?

"The public splits down the middle on Romney's business experience as well," adds Holland. "Fifty percent say that Romney has the right experience to reduce unemployment and improve the economy if he were elected, with 45% saying he does not."

The poll also indicates that Americans' views of the economy haven't gotten any better or worse since the spring. In March, the number who thought the economy was in good shape jumped from 18% to 31%, but there has been no additional movement since then. Sixty-nine percent say economic conditions are poor.

Although the race for the White House is essentially tied, Obama does have one big advantage: His supporters right now are far more enthusiastic about him. More than six in ten Obama voters say they strongly support the president, while only 47% of Romney voters feel that way about their candidate.

Nearly three-quarters of those questioned say they've made up their mind about who they will vote for in November, with one in four saying it's possible they could change their mind.

In the battle for crucial independent voters, the poll indicates Romney holds a 51%-39% advantage.

The president's approval rating continues to hover around the 50% mark. Fifty-two percent give Obama thumbs up on the job he's doing in the White House, with 47% saying they disapprove of how he's handling his duties.

The survey also indicates Americans are divided in the battle for Congress, with 48% saying they would back the Democratic candidate in their congressional district and 45% saying they would support the GOP candidate.

The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International from May 29-31, with 1,009 adults nationwide, including 895 registered voters, questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points, with a sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points for registered voters.

Also see:

Obama campaign launches assault on Romney's Massachusetts record

Obama campaign releases third set of Spanish ads

Gonzales says Romney must make personal connection to Hispanics

Wisconsin guv up in third straight poll

soundoff (344 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    No one with the right mind will support bain capital idiot. True.

    June 1, 2012 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  2. FrankinSD

    Here's the President's advantage on the economy. Businessmen make lousy presidents. Romney wouldn't be able to sell off Michigan as an under performing asset, so where does he go from there?

    June 1, 2012 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Just wait until people figure out that when Mitt Romney brags about 80% of Bain investments turning a profit does not equate to the job creation that Romney wants us to believe. If it created so many jobs, then how come Romney shipped the money to off-shore bank accounts? Huh? Is that what he calls job creation? It sure looks that way.

    June 1, 2012 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  4. Stand-up Comic....

    If Obama, the stand-up-comic and Romney, the Morman are tied in the race...how can CNN claim that Obama's base is more energized....?

    June 1, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  5. oustobamavanjonesobama

    Tied lol, tell me more about obama's economy????

    June 1, 2012 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Tied based on the popular vote which means nothing. What does the state by state vote look like?

    June 1, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  7. anoel2005

    We're suppose to believe a CNN poll that says Romney & Obama are split even on who can handle the economy better?? That's laughable, considering Romney worked in the private sector for over 20 years and has a "sterling" record (even according to Bill Clinton) .

    Obama has never had a private sector job, let alone been an administrator.

    June 1, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  8. John

    I am the first one 🙂

    June 1, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  9. cworr

    Who cares?!!! It is only June 1st.

    June 1, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  10. moose

    I don't know why people think a bussiness man would be great its a government not a bussiness they don't work the same

    June 1, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  11. mm

    Mitt Romney's campaign strategy in his complete absence of plans for the middle class or seniors: Keep up the war on women, re-hash the coded birther issue, point finger while chanting 'blame game', work feverishly to disenfranchise the votes of seniors so they can't vote against him for nixing their medicare on day one, etc.

    June 1, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  12. abe

    Im voting for Romney. Obama just doesnt seem to know how to run our contry. The economy is a disaster. The Dow was down 280 points today, this sucks!

    June 1, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  13. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Romney and the Republicans are trying to change the requirements to be President to fit Romney saying a President should have business experience. Now really, they didn't give any thought when they said that because this means all previous presidents both Republican and Democrat were failures all the way back to George Washington.

    June 1, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  14. Karl

    Can't wait to hear the spin on his jobs record. 'Oh, I meant that it really wasn't my doing.'

    June 1, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  15. wait!

    what am I missing here? Based on their viewpoints, shouldn't Mitt have EXACTLY 1% of the vote. 99% for obamer?

    June 1, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  16. Brad

    Just wait until the latest unemployment numbers start to register with the voters...Romney has done nothing but shoot up in the polls and it is looking to be a crushing defeat of socialism in November.

    June 1, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  17. DJ

    I too question this claim, from the polls I have seen, Romney is ahead. And with the jobs report today I have a feeling Romney will be even more ahead in tomorrow's polls. Both sides are energized, which is to be expected.

    June 1, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  18. Linda Thomas

    They should redo this poll now that the news jobs report has come out. Maybe that is why they polled when they did...they knew the numbers would hurt Obama. Is this bias?

    June 1, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  19. marjee123

    We all were wondering how the polls could have Romney even any where near President Obama in the polls. Remember women contrary to the republicans dreams give President Obama a wide margin, Hispanics give President Obama a wide margin as do Blacks and Young people. The one category that gives Romney a margin are the old white rich men and their Stepford wives. So we tried to figure it out. Well Old white rich men and their wives have mostly land line phones and the rest of the people polled have cell phones. Since the polling is done thru land line phones to about one thousand people who in the world do you think they call..and that's why Romeny has people who support him. I bet President Obama wins in a landslide. The republicans wont' be able to steal enough votes for a Romney win.

    June 1, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  20. Ted

    Take another poll after voters have had a chance to digest todays jobs report.

    June 1, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  21. John

    Get this guy out of the White House now!
    He is an utter failure!

    June 1, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  22. marjee123

    President Obama is ahead in women, Hispanic , Blacks and most Independents. Romney's only claim is rich old white men and their wives. Since the about one thousand calls were made to land lines and the rich old white men are the ones who have land lines that's why he is close to President Obama. Only rich old white men are stupid enough to vote for Romney. And President Obama will win in a landslide because the republicans won't be able to steal enough votes for him to win.

    June 1, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    "Sniffit-– are you worried yet?"

    Why wouldn't I be? Approximately half the country behaves like it had a frontal lobotomy with a spork through the eye and fervently prides itself on its abject ignorance, bigotry, ideological zealotry, religious fundamentalism, orwellian propaganda and rabid resentment of anyone who has an education, believes in altruism, understands the social contract and sees the encouragement of an egalitarian society as a laudable role of government (not to mention the intended role of this one). If that's not cause for concern, then I don't really know what else could be. Deputy Doublethink is a danger to everything this country used to hold dear, the fundamental principles and core values upon which we were founded prior to the institutionalization of a corporate oligarchy as our plutocratic rulers by fiat.

    June 1, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  24. YouWish

    Yeah right. Wait till the debates come. Obama will mop the floor with that dude and suddenly Obama wins by 9 points!!! oh my...

    June 1, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  25. pjoe

    Oh the choices!!!

    Vote for Obama because at least he showed up to vote "present", didn't cut off a guys hair, and never owned an Etch-A-Sketch.

    Vote for Romney because at least he wasn't born in Kenya, didn't eat his dog, and will allow us to see his college records.

    Vote for Obama because it will make Michelle proud to be an American, and Biden feel patriotic when he pays his taxes.

    Vote for Romney because Romney-care will be better than Obama-care if we knew what either was.

    Vote for Obama because big-government and debt creates jobs ... right?

    Vote for Romney because sending jobs overseas creates jobs ... right?

    Uggggh. Can we start over?

    June 1, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
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