A pair of new national polls show an increasingly tight presidential race, with President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney essentially tied.
In a Fox News survey released Friday, the candidates each garnered support of 43 percent of likely voters surveyed. Meanwhile, Gallup’s daily tracking poll gives the Republican challenger a slight edge, 47-45 percent, but that lead comes among all registered voters and represents the latest variation in a race that has been deadlocked since the end of April.
While the Fox poll shows a nation divided on who they will vote for in the fall, the survey did confirm some of the conventional wisdom about the presidential election. While more than half of Americans say the president has mostly succeeded on making the country safer, similar numbers say Obama has mostly failed in improving health care, stimulating the economy, and creating new jobs.
Nevertheless, Obama continues to be seen more favorably than his Republican challenger, with 54 percent of those surveyed saying they have a positive opinion of the president versus just 46 percent for Romney. That’s actually the president’s best favorability number since January of 2011, and Romney’s most encouraging number since Fox began polling on his likability.
The president also leads Romney on almost every favorable personality quality, perceived by voters as being more honest, being a strong leader, having the right experience, and taking personal responsibility.
Obama also continues to lead Romney on some key voter concerns, including handling education, fighting terrorism, bringing the country together, and even handling healthcare. But Romney edges the president on economic issues expected to be key to the November election, like encouraging job creation, handling taxes, and cutting government spending.
It also appears that Obama’s attacks on Bain Capital have failed to gain traction, with only 17 percent of respondents saying Romney’s tenure there were a bad thing in preparing him to be president. Conversely, 32 percent described it as a good thing and 44 percent said it made no difference.
Obama continues to hold a six-point lead among women, although Romney’s five-point lead among men generally offsets that advantage. Similarly, Obama’s 67-21 percent lead among non-white voters is balanced by Romney’s 51-35 percent advantage among whites.
(Source: The Hill)