Gallup has a poll out showing a fairly underwhelming favorability rating for Mitt Romney, but more importantly, he's moving up and is actually only a few points behind Barack Obama.
According to the pollster, 48% of Americans look at him favorably while 46% have an unfavorable opinion of him.
That's +2%, and a big jump since late spring and summer when he was mired at -8% or -9%.
What's also notable?
a. Barack Obama's favorable rating is only slightly better, 53%-48%.
b. This is a poll of Americans; not registered voters or likely voters who tend to be more conservative than the more exhaustive "all Americans." So among the people who really matter, you might see a tie or better for Romney.
c. This was taken before the convention; thus, tonight or even last night's speeches could have closed that favorability gap with Obama.
Having said that, even though Romney's closing the favorability gap, he's still trailing Obama big on core personal attributes like likability (54%-31%), empathy (52%-36%), and honesty (48%-36%).
But, as usual, that's offset by his strong advantage on the economy (52%-43%) and the deficit (54%-39%).
As Charles Krauthammer often notes, Romney's weaknesses (perceptions of likability and empathy) can be fixed, while the Obama Economy can't be fixed by election day. Thus, Romney has a better hand here.
But Romney never really sold Republicans on himself until April when, thanks primarily to perceptions of superior electability, he clinched the GOP nomination. He had lots of time to reverse some negative perceptions and struggled to do it, so this won't be a snap for him.