New state polls: Voters divided in race for White House
August 8th, 2012
07:35 AM ET
10 years ago

New state polls: Voters divided in race for White House

(CNN) - Need more proof that the race for the White House remains tight?

Then check out a new survey in three crucial swing states.

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

According to new numbers released Wednesday morning by Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times, President Barack Obama has a single digit lead in Wisconsin (a state he won by double digits four years ago) and a narrow advantage in Virginia, while Republican challenger Mitt Romney has a slight edge in Colorado.

The poll indicates that in Virginia, 49% of likely voters say they support the president, with 45% saying they back Romney, the former Massachusetts governor. The president's four point advantage is within the survey's sampling error. Four years ago, Obama became the first Democrat to carry Virginia in a presidential election since 1964.

According to the poll, Obama has a 51%-45% lead in Wisconsin, while Romney holds a 50%-45% advantage in Colorado, a state that Obama won by nine points in 2008. Romney's five point edge is just within the survey's sampling error.

"There is good reason why Virginia, Colorado and Wisconsin are considered swing states – and this data shows how close they are," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "Most voters say they have made up their minds. Nine out of 10 in each state say they are sure they will vote for the candidate they favor, which means that the pool of those who say they can be persuaded is pretty small."

Both campaigns have stepped up their pitches to middle class voters over the past month, but the survey indicates that the president has the upper hand.

"President Obama continues to lead Mitt Romney as the candidate who cares: majorities of voters in each of these three states say President Obama cares about their needs and problems," according to the poll's release. "Opinions of Mitt Romney on this are more mixed: in Colorado voters are divided, while more voters in Virginia and Wisconsin think Mitt Romney does not care about their needs and problems."

Overall, likely voters in Virginia and Wisconsin hold more favorable views of Obama rather than Romney, while likely voters in Colorado are divided.

According to the poll Romney has a ten point advantage over Obama in Colorado when asked which candidate would do a better job fixing the economy, with voters in Virginia and Wisconsin split.

In all three states, voters are more optimistic about their own state's economy than about the nation's economy. The economy remains the top issue on the minds of Americans.

In Colorado, the poll indicates that Romney is leading among white voters (Obama narrowly won the white vote in Colorado four years ago). Independent voters in the state are divided. Romney leads among men, while the president has strong support from women among Hispanic voters.

The poll's release comes as the president begins two days of campaigning in Colorado. Romney campaigned in the state last week.

In Virginia, Obama holds large leads among women and African American voters, with Romney holding the edge among white voters, independents, and military families.

In Wisconsin, Obama has the strong backing of women and voters in union households (which make up a quarter of Wisconsin voters), with Romney holding a smaller lead among men. Independents and white voters are divided, according to the survey.

The Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times poll was conducted July 31-August 6, with 1,463 likely voters in Colorado, 1,412 likely voters in Virginia and 1,428 likely voters in Wisconsin questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

Filed under: 2012 • Colorado • Mitt Romney • Polls • President Obama • Virginia • Wisconsin
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. exrepublican

    Obama's people should be yelling, show us your taxes, what are you hiding? All day, everyday.

    August 8, 2012 08:13 am at 8:13 am |
  2. Don

    So, of 12 "swing states, that shows R0mney leads polling in 2, and the President leads polling in 10. Nice!

    It almost seems as if the more campaign funds R0mney's Billionnaire backers send him.... the worse he does in polls.

    I like that equation. Shows you CANNOT buy a Presidency in America.

    August 8, 2012 08:29 am at 8:29 am |

    Willard will not win Virginia plain and simple. The only way I see Willard winning any of these swing states is if these voter ID laws restrict eligible people from voting. If that becomes the case, be prepared for anarchy. Republicans are so hellbent on power and keeping their tax cuts for the wealthy in place that they will try and buy the election if not try to steal it. It's a recipe for disaster.

    August 8, 2012 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  4. maria Bryan

    I done trust Ronney he say what people wants to here

    August 8, 2012 08:31 am at 8:31 am |
  5. v4865

    Mitt Romney has yet to TELL us what is plans are for this country ..ALL HE'S DOING IS POINTING FINGERS

    August 8, 2012 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  6. RealityBites

    " Do you think X cares about your needs and problems"
    This is a Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times polling question?? LOL!!

    August 8, 2012 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  7. n

    No matter how you slice the pie, Obama comes out way ahead of Romney. If it is about the economy, why isn't Romney in the lead? Because America was watching the republican leadership obstructionist loom and doom creating chaos with the underhanded attempt to sabotage the economic recovery the entire time. In the end "We The Real American People" will judge, convict and throw the republican bums out with Romney the Snake Oil Salesman.

    August 8, 2012 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  8. DC Observer

    Mr Obama when we were asking where the jobs you promised were, we asked you to show us the beef - we did not ask for the Obamaloney – we want the real stuff – show us the jobs.

    And can you explain once more, how simply looking at Mitt Romney's tax returns will help you create jobs?

    Mr President, we need a change in DC becasue what you have done to this nation -- stinks

    August 8, 2012 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  9. korkea aika

    Shame-faced Romney sprinkling that old 'trickle-down-tax-cuts-create-jobs-war-now-pay-later fairy dust' on the us!

    August 8, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  10. The Elephant In The Room

    I, for one, refuse to let the Republican establishment get away with 3.5 years of UNPRINCIPLED opposition to the President of the United States. When you have members of the GOP holding a SECRET MEETING on inaguration day to plot the sabotague [sp] of the incoming Commander-in-Chief, especially during a time of crisis as we were at the end of the Bush era, I CAN NOT, nor WILL NOT reward them with my vote.

    Furthermore, they were so arrogant about it. Mitch McConnell had the gall, barely a month in Mr. Obama`s term to announce he would wake up EVERYDAY with the goal of denying the President legislative progress; with the goal of making him a "1-term President". He said this before he had witnessed anything from Barack Obama, so don`t tell me it`s about his "policies".

    The Party of No has been hell bent to hold America back. I don`t see how any voter can reward such behavior. I won`t.

    August 8, 2012 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  11. Casey

    The problem I have with all these polls is that they often don't reflect the party identification of the state itself. They try to get the demographics right but what they often get wrong is Party ID. I've heard the excuses's hard to track that information. However hard it is, outpolling Republicans by 7 points in Virginia, 7 points in Wisconsin, and then outpolling Democrats by 5 points in Colorado isn't reflecting the actuality. The Party ID numbers end up being much closer than that on election day and many argue the most important factor isn't age, gender or race, but Party ID. These polls are becoming less and less reliable to me.

    August 8, 2012 09:32 am at 9:32 am |