Obama rallies Democrats; retains popularity edge over Romney

September 12, 2012

Barack Obama may not be as popular as he was four years ago, but after last week’s Democratic convention in Charlotte, he has broader and deeper support from his party’s base than at any point in his bid for re-election, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Fully 90 percent of his fellow Democrats now express positive views of his candidacy, including 69 percent who have “strongly favorable” impressions. Both numbers are at high points back more than two years, even surpassing where he was in early September, 2008. Intensely positive views of Obama are up 15 percentage points from before the GOP conventions, 10 points in the last week alone.

Of course, Obama needs more than Democrats to win a second term, but consolidating the base -- also evident in a separate poll released Tuesday -- is a critical step.

Republican views of Romney are also positive -- 84 percent favorable -- but the number of Republicans with strongly positive views of their party’s nominee slipping back under 50 percent after breaking that level for the first time in the immediate aftermath of the GOP convention.

Among all registered voters, Romney’s numbers are little changed over the past week, but among all Americans, unfavorable views have ticked up to 52 percent, a new high. Overall, 40 percent hold positive views. And about twice as many adults have strongly unfavorable than strongly favorable views of the former Massachusetts governor.

Obama again fares better in the new poll, with 54 percent of all Americans expressing positive views; 42 negative ones.

A week ago, there was new parity between the two candidates among registered voters -- just four points separated the two. In the new poll, the gap is eight-points, in line with the average difference between Obama and Romney back to the spring (nine points).


Washington Post-ABC News poll Sept. 5-9, 2012

Washington Post-ABC News poll Sept. 5-9, 2012
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Chris Cillizza | September 12, 2012