Obama ahead in presidential race

2012-08-11 08:00
Barack Obama (AP)

Barack Obama (AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - New polls suggest President Barack Obama has opened a clear lead in his re-election race over Mitt Romney, raising the stakes for the Republican challenger in a crucial month for his campaign.

Obama is ahead nationally and in most of the dozen swing states that will decide the 6 November election, as Romney prepares for two pivotal moments - his selection of a running mate and his primetime convention speech.

Several days of polling suggests that the Democratic incumbent's attempt to fix and image of Romney in the minds of voters as a rich businessman oblivious to the struggles of the middle class may be working.

And they also indicate that, while Americans are in a ornery mood after years of economic pain and do not expect Obama to offer immediate relief, they have an increasingly unfavorable view of his opponent Romney.

A Fox News national poll on Thursday put Obama ahead, at 49% to 40% over Romney while a CNN poll had Obama at 52%, seven points up on the former Massachusetts governor.

A Pew Research poll last week had Obama up by 10 points.

The polls follow a punishing few weeks for Romney, who has been pummelled by the Obama camp's negative advertising blitz, had his tax plan and personal tax arrangements savaged and endured bad headlines for a foreign trip.

Obama's gains appear to reflect improved ratings among the independent voters who often tip the scales in US elections.

CNN had Obama up by 53% to 42% among this subset of voters, while Fox News had the president up by 11 percentage points among independents, up from a four percent lead last month.

"The events of the past two weeks appear to have energized Democratic voters a bit," Fox News quoted its pollster Daron Shaw as saying.

"The Obama campaign has - at least in the short-term - succeeded in raising questions about Romney's fitness to govern and in making this less of a referendum and more of a choice election."

In the CNN poll, 48% of those asked had an unfavourable view of Romney, up six points from last month. The Fox poll had Romney's unfavourables at 45%, up 5% on last month.

Money talks

National polls, while useful snapshots of political opinion, do not tell the full story of the presidential race, which is a state-by-state battle to pile up the 270 electoral college votes needed for victory.

But polls in those critical states that swing between Democrats and Republicans, also show Obama in the lead, albeit with much smaller margins than in the national polls.

Averages of recent polls by RealClearPolitics.com show Obama up by five points in Ohio, three points in Virginia, 1.5 points in Florida, a percentage point in Iowa, and five points in Nevada.

Three months before the November 6 election, Obama also leads in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire and Colorado.

Romney is ahead in Missouri and North Carolina.

Should these forecasts be confirmed in the general election, the president's tally of electoral votes would come in at around 330.

While the latest figures look rosy for Obama, his campaign still expects the race, dominated by the lagging economy, to be close. Campaign managers are much more focused on battleground state polls than snapshots of the national race.

Romney also has ample time to change the narrative. He will get saturation media coverage when he unveils the identity of his vice presidential nominee. An announcement is expected within days.

At the end of August, Romney will have his single most important chance to make an unfiltered connection with the American people, when he accepts the Republican nomination at the party's nomination convention in Tampa, Florida.

Then, he will have the chance to press his case against Obama, and to lambast the president over his economic management, with unemployment at 8.3%, in three televised debates scheduled for October.

Conventional wisdom meanwhile has it that American voters do not tune in seriously to the election until Labour Day at the beginning of September.

Romney's growing financial advantage over Obama may also come into play in the final two months, when the president can expect a barrage of negative advertising from the challenger and allied fundraising committees.

- SAPA

Read more on:    barack obama  |  mitt romney  |  us  |  us elections 2012
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
18 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Grabouw - 11:32 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS between Sir Lowrys Pass and Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Curve 9360

The BlackBerry Curve 9360 smartphone comes preloaded with Blackberry OS7...

From R1595.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.