Polls: Obama rising in September

Betsi Fores | The Daily Caller News Foundation

The latest Gallup numbers show President Barack Obama breaking 50 percent in both approval rating and popular support, the threshold political analyst Dick Morris says he will need to cross to beat Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

Gallup reported Thursday that “September is turning out to be one of Obama’s best months in over a year.”

This comes on the heels of other polls showing Obama pulling ahead in battleground states, nearing a double-digit margin in some.

Wednesday’s New York Times/CBS News/Quinnipiac poll found Obama leading 53 to 44 percent. In Ohio, a state crucial to Romney’s chances, Obama was up 53 to 43 percent.

Obama opened a 12-point lead over Romney in Pennsylvania, holding a 54 percent to 42 percent advantage.

“Voters in each state see President Obama as better than Gov. Romney to handle the economy, health care, Medicare, national security, an international crisis and immigration. Romney ties or inches ahead of the president on handling the budget deficit,” Quinnipiac reports.

“Other polling has shown Obama gaining in swing states, but the Quinnipiac polls take it a step further, showing him in the low 50s and at or close to a double-digit lead in all three states,” the Washington Post reported Wednesday.

“In Ohio and Florida, votes are basically split down the middle on whether the county and they and their families are worse or better off than they were four years ago,” Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute told USA Today. “If voters don’t think they are worse off, it is difficult to see them throwing out an incumbent whose personal ratings with voters remains quite high.

Despite unemployment remaining above 8 percent for 43 straight months, an anemic economic recovery and the passage of the unpopular Obamacare, the latest Bloomberg National poll has Obama ahead by 6 points.

“Half of Americans hold an unfavorable view of Romney — a September high for a presidential challenger in the last three decades. Forty-nine percent of likely voters consider the former Massachusetts governor out of touch, compared with 40 percent who say that of Obama, in the latest Bloomberg National Poll conducted Sept. 21-24,” Bloomgberg News reports.

Many conservatives have criticized the methodology behind these polls, contending that they are oversampling Democrats.

Former Bush campaign “architect” Karl Rove told “The O’Reilly Factor” that current poll numbers are based on exit polls from 2008, making turnout assumptions that could prove too favorable for Obama.

“[W]e endow them [polls] with a false scientific precision they simply don’t have….Think about this. Romney and Obama get each roughly the same percentage of Republicans and Democrats as — as their opponent. That is to say they carry their — their base overwhelmingly. Romney, among Independents is winning by three points.”

Jay Cost of the Weekly Standard reminds readers that polls are merely a snapshot in time, and give no bearing on voter decision-making.

“One important ‘tell’ in my opinion, is this president’s continued weak position with independent voters, who remain the true swing vote,” he writes.

“I think the problem is that pollsters are so focused with ensuring that Democratic-leaning groups — especially minorities — are fairly represented in their polls that they’re failing to ensure that Republican-leaning groups are also fairly represented in their polls,” Brandon J. Gaylord f HorseRacePolitics.com wrote in The Daily Caller, explaining one potential reason for the Obama-leaning polls.

John Nolte from Breitbart.com goes so far as to assert that the mainstream media is actively trying to discourage Romney supporters through these polls.

“[W]ith early voting set to begin next Tuesday and Ohio ground zero for Romney, it only makes sense for the media to attempt to suppress turnout; not only with the release of these polls but with a relentless narrative that will certainly live through the Sunday shows,” he writes.

“You can also bet that the very fact that early voting starts in Ohio next Tuesday will offer the corrupt media the opportunity to just keep on keeping on with the Romney-is-doomed-in-Ohio push.”

Chris Cillizza and Aaron Blake of the Washington Post contend that the election will not be another Obama blowout like we saw in 2008.

” No one — not even the most loyal Obama allies — would argue that the political environment in 40 days will be anywhere close to as favorable as it was in November 2008,” they wrote in the Washington Post Thursday.

But for now Romney seems to be fighting an uphill battle.

Gallup concluded, “Looking forward, with three presidential debates scheduled and two more jobs reports coming out before Election Day, there is plenty of opportunity for voter preferences to swing back and forth in this range, even without further international incidents or campaign controversies.”

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