Polls: Obama Leads Among Registered Voters

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Sept. 14 2012 9:30 AM

Today's Polls: Obama Out In Front Among Registered Voters

151960457
People listen as US President Barack Obama speaks during a campaign event in Lions Park September 13, 2012 in Golden, Colo.

Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP/GettyImages.

A pair of new polls out Friday show President Obama leading GOP challenger Mitt Romney with both parties' national convention in the rear-view mirror. The exact size of the president's lead, however, differs depending on the pollster and their take on who is most likely to pull a voting lever this November.

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

The Reuters/Ipsos survey, which was taken during a four-day stretch ending yesterday, has Obama up by 7 points among what it classifies as likely voters, 48 percent to 41. That number falls one tick to 6 points, 45 percent to 39, among registered voters. Obama's lead in the Reuters survey has been steadily growing since he pulled out to a two-point lead (46-44) the day after the DNC wrapped up last week.

Advertisement

Reuters on Obama's strengths:

"Thursday's online poll also found far more registered voters preferred the incumbent's policies and approach on taxes (41 percent picked Obama, 30 percent Romney), healthcare (44 percent Obama, 28 percent Romney) and Social Security (39 percent Obama, 27 percent Romney)."

A new survey from the New York Times and CBS News, meanwhile, offers a more complicated picture. Among registered voters nationwide, Obama leads his rival by 8 points, 51 percent to 43. But among the smaller "likely voter" subset (as defined by NYT and CBS), the president's lead falls to 3 points over Romney, a gap that is within the survey's margin of error.

The full poll won't be available until this evening, so it's not exactly clear how the outlets are defining "likely voters" but their respective write-ups make it sound as though they are using a new metric. Here's how CBS News explains it:

"This is the first national poll in which CBS News and the New York Times have measured the presidential race among likely voters. The measure for likely voters takes into account voters' reported intent to vote, voting history and other factors that historically affect an individual's decision to vote."

And the NYT with some of the breakout numbers:

"Mr. Obama has an advantage among likely voters of 12 percentage points among women, the poll found, while Mr. Romney holds the upper hand among men by eight percentage points. Mr. Obama leads his Republican rival across all ages of voters, except those who are 65 or older, who favor Mr. Romney by 15 percentage points."

TODAY IN SLATE

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore

And schools are getting worried.

160 Countries Host Marches to Demand Action on Climate Change

Politics

Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

Why a Sketch of Chelsea Manning Is Stirring Up Controversy

How Worried Should Poland, the Baltic States, and Georgia Be About a Russian Invasion?

Trending News Channel
Sept. 19 2014 1:11 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
  Life
Quora
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Sept. 21 2014 1:15 PM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 5  A spoiler-filled discussion of "Time Heist."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 21 2014 2:00 PM Colin Farrell Will Star in True Detective’s Second Season
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 21 2014 8:00 AM An Astronaut’s Guided Video Tour of Earth
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.