Poll: Romney Opens Enthusiasm Gap on Obama
A new CBS News/New York Times poll released today hints at trouble for President Obama.
[T]hree and a half months before election day, Republican enthusiasm about voting this year has shot up since Mitt Romney clinched the nomination in April, from 36 percent of Republicans saying they were more enthusiastic in March to 49 percent now.
President Obama was helped to election in 2008 by a wave of voter enthusiasm among Democrats, however this year, Democratic enthusiasm is down a bit since March. Twenty-seven percent of Democrats said they were more enthusiastic about voting this year than they were in past elections, compared to 30 percent four months ago. And 48 percent of Democrats say their enthusiasm this year is the same as past elections, compared to 39 percent who answered the same question in March.
Independent voters' enthusiasm is also up with 29 percent saying they're more enthusiastic now from 22 percent four months ago.
Enthusiasm was Barack Obama's rocket fuel four years ago, but he will have to find another power source this year. He is caught between his broken promises, his policy failures, and the weak economy which many Americans believe his policies have made worse.
It's possible that the lack of enthusiasm for Obama has already begun to show up in fundraising, where Romney has not only closed the gap but opened up a lead over the past two months. Obama's response, which has been to dump negative ads on Romney, has kept the race close but unless the money race changes Obama will not be able to keep that ad spending going. Obama's anti-entrepreneurial comments on Friday may convince donors who were on the fence to start sending money Romney's way.
The CBS/NYT poll found one more bit of bad news for Obama: The percentage of adults who believe the country is off on the wrong track has climbed to 64%.
The poll also found that a solid majority of 74% say that Romney's veep choice will matter a lot or somewhat. Obama's choice has been baked in for four years; Romney could hurt himself or help himself with his running mate pick.