Monday, September 10, 2012

Tracking Polls Show President Obama's Post-Convention Bounce; President Reestablishes Lead Over Romney

The Rasmussen and Gallup tracking polls show that President Obama received the expected post-convention bounce.

The Gallup poll, which tracks movement over seven days, now has Obama with a five point lead.  The Rasmussen poll, which tracks movement over three days, shows Obama now with a lead of 4 points.   Quoting from the Rasmussen daily report on its tracking poll:
President Barack Obama
The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Sunday shows President Obama attracting support from 49% of voters nationwide, while Mitt Romney earns 45% of the vote. Three percent (3%) prefer some other candidate, and three percent (3%) are undecided...
This is the president’s biggest lead over Romney among Likely Voters since March 17. See daily tracking history. Obama’s convention bounce is evident both in the head-to-head numbers with Romney and in his Job Approval ratings....
The president has made significant gains among voters aged 40-64....The president’s bounce began the night after Bill Clinton spoke to the convention and received rave reviews. Sixty-six percent (66%) of voters nationwide have a favorable opinion of the former president. Democrats overwhelmingly believe Clinton and Obama have similar views on how to fix the economy, but few Republicans and unaffiliated voters share that assessment. Among all voters, 59% see Clinton as a better president, while 19% prefer Obama. Democrats are evenly divided.
The Real Clear Politics Average of Polls went from being a tie (breaking Obama's 11 month lead in that rating) to a 1.8% lead for Obama.  Expect Obama's RCPAOP to increase as post-convention polls roll in.

It appears the bounce the Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, received from his convention a week earlier was smaller than that received by Obama.  However, Romney's move upward in the polls actually began before the Republican National Convention, coinciding with his selection of Congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate.

This election has the closest polling of any election in my lifetime. What Democrats and Republicans should be the most concerned about in this election is turnout.  I remember the 1980 election when the presidential race on Election Day was polling almost dead even, yet Ronald Reagan won by a landslide. The reason why reflects the mpact of the intensity of people's support for the candidates, a critical factor polls don't measure well.   Reagan's voters were fired up about him while President Carter's voters had little enthusiasm for his re-election.  While I don't think Romney-leaning voters replicate Reagan's 1980 energized voters, I do think there are similarities between Carter's 1980 unenthusiastic voters and Obama's 2012 supporters. The convention helped Obama with the public's lack of enthusiasm for him to have a second term, but conventions have a way of fading in the weeks that follow.

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