Thursday, September 20, 2012
Here's the last from a series of swing state polls released by Fox News, and once again, it has bad news for Mitt Romney, as Barack Obama leads him, 49%-42%, in Virginia among likely voters.
The key stats:
a. Obama's job approval rating is 53%/45%. Again, that's going to be bloody tough for Romney to overcome in a commonwealth Obama took last time.
b. Obama's favorable rating is even higher at 58%-39%. Romney's is an underwhelming 48%/46%. That's an 18% gap between the two.
c. Obama and Romney are tied among independents, 43%-43%. Romney needs to win indies by a solid number to take the state, and there's still a chance for him, considering the relatively high number of undecided indies.
d. Gender gap favors Obama. Romney only wins men by 2%, while Obama leads with women by 12%.
e. Obama leads on the economy and jobs, 49%-44%. That means Obama sweeps that category in this round of Fox News polls (Virginia, Ohio, and Florida). Romney's small ray of light? He leads among indies on this measure, 47%-42%.
f. Romney wins among whites, 56%-37%. That's a better number for him than in Ohio and Florida, and edges him closer to that important 60% number.
g. Obama beats Romney on foreign policy, 53%-40%, on protecting the U.S. from terrorist attacks (+8%), and Medicare (+12%)
OVERALL: Once again, the sampling is pretty good, and the gap between R and D is just a bit more narrow than in 2008.
Virginia isn't a must-win for Romney (unlike Florida), but it's pretty bloody important. I wrote a GOP12 battleground guide to the state a few months back, and ultimately concluded that Obama has the upper hand in the commonwealth. Demographic changes make it tough for Romney. If Obama can turn out his folks, Romney will have trouble.