SAN FRANCISCO, CA — May 1, 2012 – With Mitt Romney now the presumptive Republican nominee for the 2012 presidential election, Maven, the Global Knowledge Marketplace, has released the results of its most recent presidential election tracking survey. The results show the power of the incumbency weighing heavily in Obama’s favor.
National polls published last week showed Obama and Romney almost dead even. However, Maven’s fifth survey of political insiders shows Barack Obama with a commanding lead, beating Romney by nearly 40 percent on the queston of who is likely to win in November.
In the Maven survey, 69 percent of respondents believed that Barack Obama will win reelection in November 2012, up from 60 percent in the January survey and 48 percent in the October survey. Meanwhile, Mitt Romney, who was neck and neck with Obama in October, slipped to 31 percent in April.
The survey’s respondents included political consultants, lobbyists, and government relations professionals from Maven’s extensive microconsulting network.
“Perhaps the most interesting outcome of this month’s survey is the fact that slightly over half of all respondents indicated that they voted for John McCain in 2008 – and nearly half of them believe that Obama will win this year,” commented Maven Co-Founder and CEO Wyatt Nordstrom. “ In other words, Republican insiders seem to believe that Romney will lose. Whether this is the result of lingering sour grapes over their preferred Republican candidates’ primary losses to Romney or a true indication of serious doubts of Romney’s ability to confront Obama remains to be seen.”
As in previous surveys, participants were asked to comment on the reasons for their selections. Highlights include:
- Respondents cited the power of an incumbent President as the main reason Obama will be re-elected in 2012. One respondent summed it up as follows:
Obama enjoys the benefits of incumbency. He has no significant opposition in his party’s nomination process, and is therefore able to raise money for use in the general election rather than versus primary opponents. Even with the Republican Party’s nomination effectively decided, that party has not yet coalesced around its candidate, and is unlikely to really do so before the fall.
Another respondent added:
The power of incumbency brings with it percentage points – perhaps 5 – of advantage almost by default. If oil prices go down, economic trends continue to improve, and more troops are brought home, the incumbent is nearly a lock. The presumed challenger does not bring enough enthusiasm, particularly from the most conservative blocks, to sway enough voters to create an upset in 2012 barring unforeseen changes.
- An additional factor – Obama’s fundraising skills – was cited as a reason for an Obama victory, according to the political Mavens surveyed. One Maven said it this way:
I believe Obama will have a sufficient money advantage and will once again show his skill as a good campaigner to win reelection. I do not feel the Republicans will field a candidate with the appeal to overcome the Obama ‘mystique.’
Another respondent added:
Obama will likely win both the popular and delegate votes. He spends much time and money on campaigning and most of his base will vote in the same fashion.
- On the contrary, others predicted that Romney will win the general election due to lingering economic and other domestic issues. As one respondent noted:
The present state of the economy and lack of recovery will negate President Obama’s popularity… Romney has a more concise energy plan. He understands that we need to develop a comprehensive energy policy…
The economic recovery will continue to be sluggish through the fall. Many independent voters are looking for an alternative to President Obama, and will support the challenger if they can be persuaded that he can meet a baseline competence threshold.”
This is the fifth in a series of surveys conducted by Maven leading up to the November 2012 election. Results are tracked to illustrate how sentiment among the respondent population changes as events unfold.
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