90 percent of Europeans would vote for Obama: poll

LONDON Wed Oct 31, 2012 1:34pm EDT

U.S. President Barack Obama walks to Air Force One at JFK Airport October 18, 2012, after attending the 67th Annual Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation dinner. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama walks to Air Force One at JFK Airport October 18, 2012, after attending the 67th Annual Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation dinner.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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LONDON (Reuters) - More than 90 percent of northern Europeans would vote for President Barack Obama if they were able to cast ballots in the United Sates' election next week because they see Mitt Romney as too right wing, British pollster YouGov said on Wednesday.

While U.S. polls show Obama and Romney are heading for a photo finish, European voters in seven northern European countries expressed overwhelming support for the Hawaiian-born 51-year-old White House incumbent.

Romney, a 65-year-old former private equity investor, is simply too much of an unknown quantity and too right wing for European tastes, said Joe Twyman, director of Political and Social Research at the pollster.

"By continental European standards, Obama is considered right-of-centre or even right-wing," Twyman told Reuters by telephone.

"Then you have Romney who's even more right wing. You've moved even further from European comfort levels," he said.

In a Europe grappling with economic crisis and welfare systems that bond investors say are unsustainable, the rhetoric of the U.S. presidential race simply does not press the same buttons.

"Accusations of socialism (against Obama) don't exactly resonate somewhere like Denmark," Twyman said.

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt reshuffled her cabinet this month, appointing the leader of the Socialist People's Party as growth and business minister.

France's socialist president, Francois Hollande, has pledged the make the wealthy pay a 75-percent tax rate on annual incomes above 1 million euros ($1.30 million).

Yougov's Twyman said the fact that Obama, who charmed many Europeans with a speech ahead of the 2008 presidential vote calling for stronger U.S. ties with Europe, has been president for four years helped his profile.

"People know a lot more Obama than about Romney. After all, he's been president for a while," he said.

The survey questioned a total of about 7500 people in Britain, Germany, France, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway. The populations of struggling euro zone economies of southern Europe were not included in the poll.

YouGov's poll of voter sentiment in the United States showed Obama had 48 percent support among registered voters while Romney had support of 46 percent of voters.

(Writing by Stephen Eisenhammer; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

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Comments (15)
citizen782 wrote:
90% of Europeans are smarter than 50% of Americans. Half of America, constituting a tiny minority on the world stage, says the rest of the world has got it all wrong. They disagree with almost everything that is working in Germany. Therefore this minority from the US is saying Germany is doing it wrong, successfully. Unfortunately this group could comprise a majority of voters in America. In the US high voter turnout is a conservatives worst enemy.

Oct 31, 2012 1:54pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
jaham wrote:
@citizen…yes, they are much smarter because their Obama-like socialist policies have fared so well for them…

Of course they’d vote Obama because he’s the only candidate who would let them continue to live their lifestyle, run up the national deficit and tell everyone that everything is okay.

Mitt, on the other hand, is not afraid to identify and tackle the tough decisions this country faces.

Oct 31, 2012 2:12pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
FlBob wrote:
The realities for the Eurozone as a whole indicate that maybe they have “got it wrong”. The average unemployment rate for the 17 countries making up the EU just hit a new record high of 11.6% with at least 2 countries currently or recently over 25%. Five of the member countries are in recession, and the EU as a whole is expected to be confirmed as in recession with negative growth for the last 2 quarters within the next few weeks. The EU debt “crisis” has drug on for 3 years with all of the financial and economic impacts, austerity, and hardships, and it’s still not clear to me there is a real solution to the problems. There are bright spots like Germany, but they are increasingly the exception, not an example that proves Eurpoe as a whole “has it right”.

Oct 31, 2012 2:22pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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