Polls are fewer in number this vacation week, but overall they must be termed good news for President Obama and Democrats. Of course that could all change in the wake of poor jobs numbers Friday, and Obama is indeed viewed more unfavorably than favorably, but it’s a question of—compared to what.
Compared to Mitt Romney, he’s in relatively good shape, not only nationwide but in the states which will really matter come November. Increasingly focus must shift to the three big states of Virginia, Florida, and Ohio, and yes, I am going to start listing Virginia first.
Obama is ahead in all three of those states, but even more alarmingly for Republicans this week, the party has fallen behind in the Real Clear Politics average for the all-important generic Congressional ballot. Republicans had led most of the year, but they now trail by 1.8 points (44.4-42.6). Rasmussen, which has had the GOP up six to seven points most of the year, now has their lead at only one point (41-40). Most pundits don’t see this as enough for Democrats to regain control of the U.S. House, but it has to be disconcerting for the GOP.
Equally as problematic are the top of the ticket numbers. RCP has Obama ahead of Romney by 2.7 points (47.0-44.3), nearly the same as pollster which has Obama up by 2.5 points (47.1-44.6).
At the same time, Pollster has Obama 2.7 points under water in favorability (46.3-49.1) and RCP has him down a point (47.3-48.3).
In other words, even though Obama isn’t doing much to please people, Mitt Romney is falling farther behind rather than closing the gap.
Fivethirtyeight.com updates its numbers on a daily basis now, and today it has Obama winning 300 electoral votes to 238 for Romney.
It’s projecting Florida as the closest state (49.7-49.2 for Obama) with Virginia at 50.4-48.6 for Obama and Ohio at 50.4-47.8 for Obama.
Even with the recent Marist tie in New Hampshire built into the formula, 538 now projects Obama to win here 51.9-48.1.
Of course these numbers could all change at once (the jobs report could be the catalyst), but any partisan Republican must be worried.
Today Rasmussen had Romney up two (46-44), but Gallup has Obama up four (48-44); those are the two pollsters which keep track on a daily basis. Less frequent pollsters tend to show even better numbers for Obama.
Gallup is out with a survey which shows little support for third party candidates this year, but what little support there is comes at Romney’s expense. In a poll released today, Obama leads Romney 47-40 with Libertarian Gary Johnson registering at three percent (and two percent volunteering Ron Paul’s name) and Jill Stein of the Green Party at one percent. If Ron Paul decides to run, Romney will have virtually no chance, but don’t look for that to happen.
North Carolina appears to be in Romney’s camp. Civitas has him up five points there (50-45), so that’s one less state to worry about. We Ask America has Obama up only one in Florida (46-45).
A look inside American Research Group’s recent New Hampshire poll bodes ill for Romney with Independents. Obama leads 49-41 overall, but his margin is 63-33 with voters registered in neither party (Romney leads 82-12 with Republicans; Obama 81-14 with Democrats, pretty much a wash).
ARG also shows a huge gender gap in New Hampshire. Obama leads 58-34 among women, Romney 44-52 among men.
The only good news for Romney is that he cuts the eight point deficit down to three when only those certain to vote are considered.
With all the talk this week of Ohio Republican Secretary of State Josh Mandel coming on against incumbent Democrats Sherrod Brown in the Senate race, I decided to check the Real Clear Politics average. It does NOT appear to be close with Brown leading by 10.5 points (48.5-38.0). Only Rasmussen has Mandel even close (down 47-42). PPP has Brown up 46-39, perhaps the first indication that Mandel could be closing (you can usually add three points to any Republican in a PPP poll result). PPP has Obama up only three (47-44) in Ohio.
The latest I can find on the other Brown (Republican Scott in Massachusetts) is a 46-46 tie, but that’s from PPP, so we can assume Brown is actually ahead.
As for Obamacare, only CNN/Opinion Research has it viewed favorably (52-47). Strangely enough, even in that poll, most people want it repealed (52-46). Go figure. Rasmussen has it at -13 (39-52), Fox at -10 (39-49).
Three Senate polls come as good news for Republicans. It may be an outliar but We Ask America had Republican George Allen nine points ahead of Kaine in Virginia (44-35). Quinnipiac had Republican Connie Mack within one (41-40) of Nelson in Florida, and Rasmussen has Republican Jeff Flake up 16 points (47-31) over Carmona in Arizona (for the Kyl seat).