Obama Lead Over Romney Similar to 2008 Margin Over McCain

President Barack Obama
The Quinnipiac findings match President Barack Obama’s lead in the daily Gallup tracking poll, 49 percent to 45 percent, for the period Sept. 24-30. Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg

President Barack Obama’s lead over Republican challenger Mitt Romney has narrowed, according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

The poll released yesterday showed Obama ahead of Romney 49 percent to 46 percent among likely voters, down from 50 percent to 45 percent in a comparable survey two weeks earlier. Obama’s margin increased to 48 percent to 43 percent when third-party candidates were included.

Forty-three percent of registered voters said Romney, a former Massachusetts governor and private-equity executive, would do better at creating jobs and improving the economy; 42 percent picked Obama. Among these voters, Obama was viewed favorably by 52 percent and unfavorably by 42 percent; Romney was rated favorably by 41 percent and unfavorably by 44 percent.

Registered voters, by a margin 57 percent to 39 percent, said the economy was recovering; by 44 percent to 13 percent, they said it would improve in the next 12 months; 35 percent said it wouldn’t change.

Obama’s job performance rating was 49 percent positive and 48 percent negative.

The poll of 832 likely voters was taken Sept. 26-30 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points. The larger sample of 1,000 registered voters had a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points.

Gender Gap

Another poll showed Obama with an advantage over Romney similar to his pre-election margins four years ago, though the president’s edge among all voters is smaller than at a similar point in 2008.

Obama led by 56 percent to 38 percent among women in a survey of likely voters released yesterday by Quinnipiac University. Romney led among men, 52 percent to 42 percent. Obama had a four-percentage-point advantage among all voters.

A Quinnipiac poll taken in mid-September 2008 showed Obama with a 14-point lead, 54 percent to 40 percent, among likely women voters as Republican nominee John McCain, an Arizona senator, led among men, 50 percent to 43 percent.

Obama also leads Romney 70 percent to 26 percent among likely Hispanic voters, according to a CNN/ORC International poll published yesterday.

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