Presidential Race Maps Writing on the Wall

Is The Race Narrowing in Pennsylvania?

Posted Jul 31, 2012 at 9:16 AM by Maurice Berger

With just about every presidential cycle reporting a narrowing race in Pennsylvania, only to have the state go blue (it has done so reliably for the past twenty years), the question remains: what do polls suggesting a close race in the state mean. The latest Susquehanna Polling & Research survey in Pennsylvania, for example, has President Obama leading Mitt Romney by just three points, 46% to 43%. PollTrack's answer at this point is that the state remains Leaning Democrat. Stay tuned.

Obama Leads In Ohio

Posted Jul 30, 2012 at 10:45 AM by Maurice Berger

A new poll by We Ask America suggests that President Obama holds a modest but comfortable lead over Mitt Romney in the key swing state of Ohio, 48% to 40%. One factor that may be helping the president in Ohio: the state's unemployment numbers have improved in recent months.

Romney Most Disliked GOP Presidential Candidate In Modern History

Posted Jul 27, 2012 at 12:08 PM by Maurice Berger

According to latest NBC-WSJ poll, Mitt Romney's "overall favorable/unfavorable score remains a net negative -- a trait no other modern presumptive GOP presidential nominee (whether Bob Dole, George W. Bush or John McCain) has shared."This is one important reason that President Obama maintains a modest lead over his GOP rival, despite economic factors that tend to hurt the incumbent. With Obama's likeability hovering above the 50%, he has shown consistent strength over his opponent in most of the key battleground states.

Will Enthusiasm Gap Hurt Obama?

Posted Jul 26, 2012 at 10:19 AM by Maurice Berger

A new survey by Gallup, reports that "Democrats are significantly less likely now (39%) than they were in the summers of 2004 and 2008 to say they are 'more enthusiastic about voting than usual' in the coming presidential election. Republicans are more enthusiastic now than in 2008, and the same as in 2004." Will this enthusiasm gap hurt the President's reelection chances? The answer remains unclear at this point. Elections cycles see enthusiasm ebb and flow from one party to another, sometimes increasing as the election draws nears. A number of factors can in crease voter enthusiasm within a party, from the perception that the election is becoming very close to news events beyond the control of either party. Check back with PollTrack in September/October to see if Democratic interest increases in the election.

NPR Poll: Obama and Romney Tied in 12-Key Battleground States

Posted Jul 25, 2012 at 9:32 AM by Maurice Berger

In another indication of just how close the presidential race may turn out to be--and at this point--a new NPR poll in 12 battleground states -- Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin -- reports that President Obama and Mitt Romney tied at 46% each.

Obama Ahead in Florida

Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:37 AM by Maurice Berger

A new poll by Survey USA in Florida reports that President Obama is leading Mitt Romney by +5%--and inching closer to the all-important 50% mark--in the key battleground state, 48% to 43%.

Maps Updated This Weekend!

Posted Jul 23, 2012 at 9:23 AM by Maurice Berger

Please check out our maps, which have been updated this weekend. And see "How the Maps Work" below!

A PollTrack Tutorial: How The Maps Work

Posted Jul 20, 2012 at 12:34 AM by Maurice Berger

For new visitors or for old visitors who would like a refresher course, here is a guide to PollTrack's unique mapping system. Remember, both Today's Map and Tomorrow's Map will be changing continuously throughout Election 2012, so check back often.

First, an overview: our innovative presidential election maps offer a snapshot of where things stand and where they are headed in the state-by-state hunt for electoral votes. Armed with public opinion polls, the history and demographics of each state, knowledge of the nation’s geographic and cultural diversity, and common sense and intuition, political director Maurice Berger offers continuous updates and a blog (below map) on the state of the presidential race. Today’s Map Today monitors its current status. Tomorrow’s Map Today charts its momentum in the coming days or weeks. And Election Day Today records the actual outcome of the 2012 presidential race.

Here's a guide to each map:

Today's Map Today: This map monitors the current status of the race. It gauges the relative strength of each candidate within each state as it presently stands. Each state is marked with its abbreviation and number of electoral votes. Click on a state for commentary in the ongoing PollTrack blog.

States are called on an ongoing basis: Blue and Red for “Safe” Democrat or Republican respectively, Light Blue or Light Red for states currently “leaning” toward one party or another. Determinations are based on a combination of factors, including poll averages, trends in most recent polling that contradict or call into question the accuracy of these averages, and on the ground reports and information. For diehard red or blue states (like Idaho or DC), little polling may be available, so the state will be called on the basis of on the ground reports and/or its stable voting history.

Tomorrow's Map Today: This map charts the momentum of the race. It tracks the hunt for electoral votes in each state as it might play out in the coming days or even weeks. States are called on an ongoing basis: Blue and Red for trends that suggest “Safe” Democrat or Republican respectively, Light Blue or Light Red for trends that suggest a state is “leaning” toward one party or another. Determinations are based on a combination of factors, including movement in the most recent polling, a state’s demographics and voting history, on the ground reports and information, and news about a candidate's state-wide political activities.

Election Day Map Today: This map forecasts the outcome of the 2012 presidential race. Win Democrat or Win Republican respectively. Determinations are based on a combination of factors, including long term and recent trends in state-wide polling, a state’s demographics and voting history in relationship to these trends, on the ground reports and information, and news about a candidate's state-wide political activities. States are called on an ongoing basis, with Blue (Democrat) and Red (Republican) indicating PollTrack’s long-term prediction for a state. NOTE: calls are made only when voter opinion begins to solidify in each state, thus this map will fill-in slowly over the next two and half months.

Close National Race For President

Posted Jul 19, 2012 at 9:34 AM by Maurice Berger

Three new polls out yesterday suggest that the race for president remains very close:

Fox News President Obama leads Mitt Romney nationally by +4%, 45% to 41%.

CBS/NYT Romney leads by +1%, 47% to 46%.

NPR Obama leads Romney by +2%, 47% to 45%.

Approval of US Congress At Historic Low

Posted Jul 18, 2012 at 9:01 AM by Maurice Berger

According to Gallup, "Americans' view of the job Congress is doing is holding at roughly the same level Gallup has found since April, with 16% approving and 78% disapproving. This is slightly improved from the record low of 10% seen in February and similar to the ratings in mid-2011, but below where it stood at the start of that year." Here is Gallup's chart:

Approve of Congress -- January 2011-July 2012

Obama Holds Modest Lead Across Four Swing States

Posted Jul 17, 2012 at 9:45 AM by Maurice Berger

A new Purple Strategies poll conducted across four battleground states -- Ohio, Florida, Colorado and Virginia -- finds President Obama leading Mitt Romney by modest +2%, 47% to 45%. An earlier poll in June rracked an identical +2% lead. 

Obama With Seven-Point Lead In PA

Posted Jul 16, 2012 at 12:24 PM by Maurice Berger

A while the GOP attempts to make Pennsylvania competitive this year, a We Ask America poll in the state reports that President Obama leads Mitt Romney by seven points, 47% to 40%.

Obama Ahead By Double-Digits In New Mexico

Posted Jul 13, 2012 at 9:32 AM by Maurice Berger

According to a survey by  We Ask America poll in New Mexico, President Obama holds a healty double-digit lead in the state, 51% to 40%. PollTrack moves the state on Today's Map from Leaning Democratic to Safe Democratic.

Obama Ahead In Wisconsin

Posted Jul 12, 2012 at 10:38 AM by Maurice Berger

According to a new poll by Public Policy Polling in Wisconsin finds President Obama now holds a modest +6% lead over Mitt Romney by six points, 50% to 44%. More important for the president: he is at the 50% mark, suggesting that the state may be difficult for the GOP this year (as it has been in the past seven presidential elections).

Little Support Of Third-Party Candidates

Posted Jul 11, 2012 at 9:52 AM by Maurice Berger

According to a recent survey by Gallup, "U.S. registered voters show limited support for third-party candidates this year, with the vast majority preferring Barack Obama or Mitt Romney." The survey poll "asked a special presidential preference question, listing three third-party candidates in addition to Obama and Romney. Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson is the choice of 3% of registered voters and Green Party candidate Jill Stein the choice of 1%. Another 2% volunteer Ron Paul's name and 1% mention someone other than the listed candidates." In most instances, Gallup reports, this support was at the expense of Romney's candidacy.

The Demographics Of The President's Approval Numbers

Posted Jul 10, 2012 at 9:50 AM by Maurice Berger

For a snapshot of the demographics of President Obama's approval rating, here is an informative breakdown of the numbers by Gallup (for the week of 25 June through 1 July):









Americans Split On Healthcare Ruling

Posted Jul 09, 2012 at 9:24 AM by Maurice Berger

Americans are sharply divided over last month's landmark Supreme Court decision on the 2010 healthcare law, according to a survey by Gallup, "with 46% agreeing and 46% disagreeing with the high court's ruling that the law is constitutional. Democrats widely hail the ruling, most Republicans pan it, and independents are closely divided." Here is Gallup's breakdown by party affiliation:

U.S. Public Reaction to Supreme Court Healthcare Decision, June 2012

Obama Maintains National Lead

Posted Jul 06, 2012 at 9:46 AM by Maurice Berger

Two new polls out today report that President Obama continues to maintain a national lead over his GOP challenger, Mitt Romney. Economist/YouGov shows Obama with a +4% national lead, 47% to 43%; Gallup tracking shows a similar lead for the president: 48% to 44%.

Hispanic Voters Overwhemingly Affiliate With Democratic Party

Posted Jul 05, 2012 at 9:56 AM by Maurice Berger

While a demographic survey by USA Today/Gallup poll reports that 51% of Hispanics in the United States are self-described independents, while 32% are Democrats and 11% are Republicans, the partisan leanings of these voters tell another story: 52% affiliate with the Democratic Party while only 23% lean towards the GOP, another sign of the increasingly Romney's increasingly uphill battle to win over voters crucial to the outcome of the fall election.

Americans Divided On Healthcare Ruling

Posted Jul 03, 2012 at 8:24 AM by Maurice Berger

According to a survey by CNN/Opinion Research, American voters are evenly divided on last week's U.S. Supreme Court healthcare ruling: 50% agree with the Court's decision; 49% disagree. As for support for the law's key provision--the individual mandate--voters are also split, with 48% favoring it and 51% opposing it.

Obama Holds Huge Lead Among Latinos in Swing States

Posted Jul 02, 2012 at 12:16 PM by Maurice Berger

Will the Latino vote provide President Obama with the kind of cushion he needs to assure his reelection. A new Latino Decisions poll suggests that the answer may be yes. Obama is now significantly ahead of Mitt Romney among Latino voters in the key swing states of Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Nevada and Virginia. The survey reports that "In Florida, Obama is leading Romney by a margin of 53% to 37%, a slight increase from a 50% to 40% lead Obama held over Romney in a January 2012 Latino Decisions/Univision News poll in Florida. In the five states combined Obama lead Romney 63% to 27%, however in southwestern battlegrounds of Arizona, Colorado and Nevada Obama performed even better. In Arizona Obama received 74% to 18% for Romney, in Colorado he was favored by 70% to 22% and in Nevada 69% to 20%. In Virginia, Obama lead 59% to 28% over Romney among Latino registered voters." These numbers suggest that the even ordinarily red state of Arizona could be in play this year.