New poll carries warning signs for Obama in 2012

WASHINGTON Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:28pm EDT

President Barack Obama walks from the podium after making a statement to the press on debt reduction in the Brady Press briefing room of the White House in Washington, July 19, 2011. REUTERS/Jason Reed

President Barack Obama walks from the podium after making a statement to the press on debt reduction in the Brady Press briefing room of the White House in Washington, July 19, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A poll released on Wednesday carried warning signs for President Barack Obama's re-election chances in 2012.

The Public Policy Polling survey found that for the first time since July, Obama does not lead Republican front-runner Mitt Romney in the group's monthly national poll on the 2012 election race. Romney has pulled into a tie with Obama at 45 percent.

Obama's overall approval rating was at 46 percent, with 48 percent of voters disapproving of him, and this is in line with other recent surveys.

But independents were split against Obama 49 percent to 44 percent, and the president will need independent voters to help carry him to victory in November 2012.

Independents broke solidly for Obama in his 2008 election but helped Republicans win the U.S. House of Representatives in last November's congressional elections.

Obama's approval rating has been in the doldrums because of the 9.2 percent U.S. jobless rate and prolonged wrangling with Congress over raising the U.S. debt ceiling.

The polling organization said on its website that Obama's position appeared worse than meets the eye.

"There's a very good chance Barack Obama would lose if he had to stand for re-election today," said Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling. "This is his worst poll standing in a long time and he really needs the economy to start turning around."

The pollsters said if there is a silver lining for Obama it is that he trailed Romney in the same poll last July and then regained the lead for each of the next 11 months.

Most political analysts believe Obama will be in a strong position for re-election given the relatively weak Republican field, a huge financial advantage in campaign contributions and the potential for an economic recovery.

An NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll released this week found that Obama led Romney 48 percent to 41 percent but when judged against a generic Republican presidential candidate the margin was tighter at 42 percent to 39 percent.

Separately, the Gallup polling organization's three-day rolling average of its daily poll put Obama's job approval at 42 percent with 48 percent disapproving.

(Reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Christopher Wilson)

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Comments (25)
celebs4truth wrote:
Romney? LOL! Yea, Right! If it’s not obvious to you that Romney is very similar to Soetoro, and is just another establishment candidate, just like Soetoro, who will basically continue the very same overall establishment agenda, just like Soetoro, Bush, Clinton, Bush, etc., etc., than I feel sorry for you, and frankly, for all of us!

Jul 20, 2011 7:29pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
olsmiley wrote:
Very partisan president. He did not bring the country together as I hoped. I’ll vote for unnamed opponent in 2012.

Jul 20, 2011 7:43pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ginchinchili wrote:
Ahh…the Republican’s plan is working perfectly. Keep unemployment high so that the country will blame Obama. What company would want to hire anyone when they don’t know whether or not the cost of borrowing money is about to get much more expensive?

Funny how economic “uncertainty” had been such a major concern for Republicans this past winter when Obama tried to end the unaffordable Bush tax cuts, and now they are happy to create much, much more economic uncertainty by threatening not to raise the debt limit. One never knows where the Republicans stand from one day to the next. It’s whatever political position helps them at the moment. Anyone remember “deficits don’t matter”?

olsmiley: Only a very partisan citizen could reach that conclusion. Obviously you weren’t going to vote for Obama anyway, so why pretend otherwise? The right has become about as immoral a group as I’ve seen. Just tell the truth, for god’s sake.

Obama has tried too hard to work with the Republicans. The Republicans have made it clear from day one that they would oppose Obama on everything he wants to do. The Republicans have confirmed fewer presidential appointees than any previous Congress. They say they want to cut spending and Obama agrees to twice the amount of spending cuts than proposed by the Republicans and so the Republicans change their minds and don’t want any deal. Mitch McConnell even said that his top priority was to make Obama a one term president. olsmiley, it doesn’t get any more partisan than that, and McConnell is a Republican.

The problem with the Republicans is that they hate democracy. They spend all of their energy working on ways to get around our governing laws just to get what they want. Democracy is an inconvenience to them. They are a threat to American democracy.

Jul 20, 2011 8:29pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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