The PJ Tatler

Oh My: Romney 49 — Obama 47

Rasmussen shows a four-point surge for Mitt Romney and that’s with only two days polling after the debate. Meanwhile, Reuters daily tracking also shows a four-point bounce for Romney during the same period.


The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Saturday shows Mitt Romney attracting support from 49% of voters nationwide, while President Obama earns the vote from 47%. Two percent (2%) prefer some other candidate, and two percent (2%) are undecided.

These results are based upon nightly interviews and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. As a result, only about two-thirds of the interviews for today’s update were conducted after the presidential debate. Sunday morning’s update will be the first national polling based entirely upon post-debate interviews.

Still, the numbers reflect quite a debate bounce for Romney. Heading into Wednesday’s showdown, it was the president who enjoyed a two-point advantage. Today is the first time Romney has been ahead by even a single point since mid-September. See daily tracking history. As with all bounces, it remains to be seen whether it is a temporary blip or signals a lasting change in the race.

Both men have solidified their partisan base. Romney is supported by 89% of Republicans and Obama by 88% of Democrats. Among those not affiliated with either major party, Romney leads by 16.

The generation gap remains wide. Obama leads by double digits among those under 40. Romney leads by double digits among those over 40.

Matchup results are updated daily at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily e-mail update).

Post-debate state polls show Romney up one in Virginia,  the president up one in Ohio and Romney up two in Florida. All three remain Toss-Ups in the Rasmussen Reports Electoral College Projections. Check out our review of last week’s key polls to see “What They Told Us.” 

Lest Romney supporters get antsy over the better-than-expected jobs numbers, Megan McArdle has the antidote:

There’s another reason to disbelieve in a conspiracy: the number comes too late to do any good. Most of the political experts I’ve talked to think that late-breaking good news on unemployment doesn’t help you . . . and the reason they think this is that George H. W. Bush had good employment numbers in the fall, with a sharp October decline in the number of unemployed, yet he nonetheless went down to defeat. If you go along for four years with an unemployment rate of over 8%, then suddenly dip to slightly below that figure, voters do not simply go “Hurray! The president finally fixed the economy just in time!” They think “Maybe it’s really getting better, and maybe it’s a blip.” (As in fact, the 1992 October jobs report sort of was–the number of people out of work rose again the following month, though in the context of a distinct downward trend).

The bottom line is that people’s view of the economy is very personal. They judge how well things are going based on their own personal economic experience, the experience of their family and friends, and how secure they feel in their job. Even the “official” unemployment number is not known to move the needle very much.

But there is no doubt that Romney’s beat down of Obama during the debate translated into a nice, healthy bump not only in the polls, but also in the intangible area of energizing his campaign and his supporters.

Just what the doctor ordered.