Poll: Are Obama Bain attacks hurting Romney?
July 23rd, 2012
04:03 PM ET
10 years ago

Poll: Are Obama Bain attacks hurting Romney?

Washington (CNN) - Mitt Romney's campaign is pointing to a new national poll that suggests the attacks by President Barack Obama's campaign on the GOP challenger's business record are not working.

According to a USA Today/Gallup national survey released Monday, 63% of Americans say Romney's business background, including his years at Bain Capital, the private equity firm he co-founded, would cause him to make good decisions in handling the nation's economy over the next four years, with 29% saying his background would cause him to make bad decisions.

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For more than two months, the Obama campaign has fired away at Romney's business record, highlighting reports that Romney remained CEO of Bain Capital after January 1999, when he has repeatedly said he left to head the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. At the heart of the debate are companies that were acquired by Bain after 1999, which in some cases resulted in jobs being outsourced to countries with lower labor costs. The Obama campaign and a pro-Obama super PAC have hammered Romney in ads for months, labeling him an outsourcer.

The Romney campaign has responded by touting a nonpartisan fact-check by FactCheck.Org have poked holes in the "outsourcer" claims, and recently launched a new offensive accusing the president of outsourcing jobs through his administration's trade policies and loan guarantee program.

A CBS News/New York Times poll released last week indicate that six in ten said Romney's tenure at Bain Capital would not matter to their vote, with 23% saying it would make them less likely to vote for Romney and 14% saying it would make them more likely to vote for the presumptive GOP nominee. The Obama campaign points to polling in some of the battleground states where the spots are running that indicate that Romney's unfavorable rating has edged up.

According to the USA Today/Gallup poll, 54% say Romney has the personality and leadership qualities a president should have, edging up a point from February. Fifty-seven percent say Obama has the personality and leadership qualities needed in a president.

While both campaigns and the independent groups supporting the two candidates have launched a record setting amount of negative ads, the survey indicates that a majority of the public says neither candidate has been attacked unfairly.

According to the poll, Romney has the edge when it comes to being able to "get things done," while the president has a two-to-one advantage over Romney on likeability, and has a double digit lead on the former Massachusetts governor on understanding the problems Americans face on a daily basis.

The USA Today/Gallup poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday, with 1,030 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. cali girl

    yep. The pain from BAIN will go all through the election. Duck and Dodge Robmey will come up with nonsense just to change the subject.

    July 23, 2012 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    The survey is flawed. The poll is a national survey, and the ads are only running in certain states. Poll those states for a more accurate result.

    July 23, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    "According to the poll, Romney has the edge when it comes to being able to "get things done," while the president has a two-to-one advantage over Romney on likeability, and has a double digit lead on the former Massachusetts governor on understanding the problems Americans face on a daily basis."
    By a significant margin, people see Romney as most likely to "get things done" and solve problems.
    Yet, by a similar margin, people see Obama as most likely to understand the problems than Romney.

    That is retarded.

    July 23, 2012 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  4. Investment Advisor

    Axelrod can only serve up so much kool aid....drink until you puke!

    July 23, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  5. Woman In California

    I wasn't polled and even if I were, the only poll that matters is the one in November when Willard will be sent "offshore" for good.

    Obama 2012 ALL the way.

    July 23, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  6. Wilson

    Not really, at least as far as thinking, intelligent individuals go. That being said, Romney is not my number one choice, but he will do far less damage to this country than Obama will do if he is allowed to remain as president.

    July 23, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  7. betterdays

    I bet if he had made millions selling loud, ugly, ill-fitting clothes to people who couldn't really afford them, we wouldn't be having this conversation.

    July 23, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  8. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Forcing Banks to make Housing Loans to people that can't afford them is a Great Plan? When you have a Train Wreck somebody has to repair the Train. But first you have to find somebody that knows how to fix a Train. You will have to decide who knows how to repair a train. Pick the wrong guy and you will be hoofing it. I don't care. I never got on that train.

    July 23, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  9. Shills

    If Americans are not THINKING FOR THEMSELVES and you buy into any TV ADS from either party, than you need to go back to school. Tune both parties TV Ads off - they stink on the most part. What a waste of $$ and a waste of human good will.

    July 23, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  10. IntelligentDesign

    i am not going to vote for him.

    July 23, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  11. roger

    I don't care about his Bain record....I care more that he believes that Jesus lived in America, the Garden of Eden is in Missouri, Jews sailed to America on boats thousands of years ago, and non-whites are that way because God is punishing them.

    I'm not religious in any way, but that just smacks of insanity.

    July 23, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |

    I'll bet you $10,000 the attack ads are having an effect.

    July 23, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  13. Frank

    If the BAIN comments weren't working, then Team Romney wouldn't have been interested or worried enough to make reference to them. The attacks were working for Perry and Newt until they dropped out of the race, and then the pathetic tactic that Perry and Newt "advised" democrats not to use them, too. GO HOME, ALEXITHYMIC MITT.

    July 23, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  14. California Gary

    Here we go with the old apples and oranges thing. Romney points to a nationwide poll and says "look, the attacks aren't working"........but the attacks aren't being aired nationally, just in the swing states across the Mid-West. Check the numbers there and you will see quite a different story about how effective the Bain attacks are. They are taking a toll, as well they should. He absolutely misrepresented his business experience to the American public when he claimed to be a "job creator".......he wasn't in the business of creating jobs, quite the opposite.

    July 23, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  15. me

    November will tell!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111111

    July 23, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  16. GAModerate

    I hate when pollsters poll on things that the nation as a whole is not experiencing. They polled all 50 states about how ads that only about 13 states AT MOST are affecting their votes. The swing state polls show Romney's business record doesn't play well or has no affect at all.

    July 23, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  17. n

    Refusing to see beyond your blind rage of hate and resentment for this president, we ignore Romney's questionable character on every issue. His actions are in conflict with his empty words of "I know how to fix the economy, I know how to create jobs" Name me one job that Romney created other then his signature, acquire and destroy Bain raiders? And how many people does it take to take over a company? Mainstream America is becoming apart of the collective and are slowly being assimilated as they are being programed to vote against their own interest. Romney is part of what's wrong with America. His, along with the republican leadership, ideology is totally flawed. Ok, let's be real, Romney is a big fat lier . . . It is the child like truth, plain as day. Nothing intellectual about the ins and outs or Romney, he is just filled with darkness, he walks in the shadow of his own hidden misdeeds as he refuses to bring into the light, his self serving agenda. Romney is not the one to lead this great country. Romney is a conflict of interest. Period.

    July 23, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  18. Celine

    Romney will be the only choice to help your country get back on track.
    Obama is a man of many words and very little action , take away his teleprompter and he is even lost for words.

    July 23, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  19. Four and The Door

    Americans appreciate success. So as much as Obama adopts the battle cry of the defunct Occupy Wall Street "movement", he has to overcome the fact that Mitt Romney has plenty of success to bring to the table and in general Americans don't like to be told to hate other Americans. Advantage: Romney 2012.

    July 23, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  20. n

    This poll is a double speak, reeking of hypocrisy!

    July 23, 2012 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  21. BLKMANinAmerica

    Clearly if this yoyo (Romney) becomes President it is only because he (like GW Bush) bought the election.

    July 23, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  22. ge

    al capone called himself a business man too–taxes sent him to jail

    July 23, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  23. wgf

    The US economy is not a corporate take over. At least not yet.

    July 23, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  24. The Real Tom Paine

    The poll only shows how torn people are at this stage: one one hand, Romney has a big edge when it comes to handling the economy, yet Obama has a big edge in terms of understanding their plight. In other words, do you pick the person whom you like, or the one whom you suspect will throw you under the bus to achieve his goal? Are you willing to be thrown under the bus?

    July 23, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  25. Sorensen

    The problem is not Bain itself. They are a normal middle-of the-line management consultancy. The problem is the total
    ignorance of 63% of the american electorate that think Romney's "management-education" from Bain qualifies him to
    run the economy of the USA. All he learnt in Bain was how to manipulate distressed assets and keep as much of the
    money left for himself and Bain. And now he is parading around the world as if he had been a real "captain of industry"
    and had been running large, complex companies like GE, P&G, Ford, IBM, Apple, etc. He would have been a disaster in
    any of those companies. Indeed, nobody would ever have offered him the job in the first place. His background is
    He is probably a nice, little man at heart, but could never live up to his fathers much stronger personality. So he is trying
    to lie, deceive, cheat, fake smile himself out of it. It never works. And it is so embarrassing. And the few people with
    honesty and real brains in the GOP know it all to well.
    Being a mormon bishop is probably as far as he will ever go.

    July 23, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
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