A dissection of voting groups in Virginia shows President Obama holding together key parts of his 2008 coalition. Mitt Romney has some ground to cover to match or exceed John McCain’s 2008 performance in several areas, according to a new Washington Post Virginia poll.
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Obama’s Groups: It’s tough to improve upon a 92 percent vote share, but Obama inched up to 97 percent among African Americans in the new poll. He has a comfortable lead among women: 56 to 38 percent, better than his 2008 margin. He tops 60 percent in the populous D.C. suburbs of Northern Virginia. He is extending his wide 2008 margin among those ages 18 to 29.
Romney’s Groups: There are a couple of trouble spots for Romney when compared with McCain’s 2008 performance. McCain won 48 percent of the vote among independents, but Romney captures just 41 percent. He is a little softer among conservatives, too, edging down from McCain’s 80 percent share to 73 percent. Romney dips below 40 percent among women, a group Obama won by 53 to 46 percent over McCain.
Romney is holding steady across most regions of the state, but there is a sharp fall-off in the southeastern Tidewater region, home to Virginia Beach and Newport News. Obama defeated McCain 57 to 43 percent in 2008. Romney is losing to Obama by nearly 2 to 1 in the new poll, 63 to 33 percent.