Last in a Series of Maven Surveys of Political Experts Now Available
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — October 30, 2012 – With days to go before the 2012 election, President Barack Obama’s holds a razor-thin advantage over challenger Mitt Romney, according to twenty-five top political insiders surveyed by Maven, the Global Knowledge Marketplace. Unlike “opinion polls” which measure political preferences among voters, Maven sought the opinions of influential political consultants, lobbyists, and government relations professionals about the outcome of the current campaign. Although a slim majority of experts still believe Obama will prevail next week, Romney has gained significant ground and threatens to unseat the incumbent.
Maven’s previous tracking survey conducted in September of the same group of experts showed Barack Obama beating Romney by a margin of 56% to 44% on the question of who is likely to win in November, a decline from a lead of 40 percentage points in the survey’s April edition. That lead has tightened to a scant four percent in the latest survey, reflecting Romney’s recent strength in the wake of a strong performance in the debates. 52 percent of respondents believe that Barack Obama will win reelection in November 2012, his lowest level of support since October 2011. Meanwhile, 48% of respondents selected Romney as the likely winner, his highest level of support since polling began in June 2011.
“It’s down to the wire and the experts we surveyed believe this could go either way. Although Mitt Romney has momentum, it remains to be seen whether he can overcome Obama’s swing state advantage,” commented Maven Co-Founder and CEO Wyatt Nordstrom. “For the first time since we began this series of Surveys, our respondents’ views closely match the public polling.”
As in previous surveys, participants were asked to comment on the reasons for their selections. Highlights include:
- Virtually all respondents agreed that Romney’s debate performance dramatically increased his chances of winning:
The debates provided Romney with just the opportunity he needed to close the gap and make himself look presidential. Obama’s performance in the first debate was a stunning disappointment and literally energized the more conservative base who, smelling blood in the water, moved into the electorate of likely voters in significant numbers and changed the polls – up and down the ticket and on ballot measures, not just on the presidential vote.
Another respondent added:
After a commanding performance in the first debate, Mitt Romney has and continues to build momentum for his candidacy.
A third noted:
It appears that after the first presidential debate, momentum began shifting towards Romney Ryan and Obama Biden have yet to shove the pendulum back in their direction.
- Nevertheless, a majority of respondents still believe Obama’s Electoral College advantage might be too much for Romney to overcome, even with a potential popular vote majority. One Maven put it this way:
The popular vote may go to Romney, but the electoral map still favors Obama. It is hard to imagine a scenario where Romney carries both FL and OH. Without both, the electoral map becomes extremely difficult to reach 270 votes for Romney and will require wins in extremely difficult states like WI, NV, MT, CO, VA, PA and NH.
Nine states[are] in play, and while the polls are tightening, I don’t see how Romney is going to close the gap to win enough electoral votes. I think Romney wins Florida, Virginia, North Carolina, New Hampshire and possibly Colorado. That leaves him several votes short of the needed 270.
- Several of those who believe Mitt Romney will win cited his campaign’s strong last-minute momentum:
It appears that after the first presidential debate, momentum began shifting towards Romney Ryan and Obama Biden have yet to shove the pendulum back in their direction. The momentum has not shifted since that first debate and [neither] the VP debate nor the subsequent Pres debates have changed that in any quantifiable manner.
Governor Romney’s campaign is peaking at the right time and the dire economic realities of the US economy have withered the enthusiasm for the President’s reelection.
Though I believe The President would win the election were it held tomorrow, Romney is peaking at the right moment and will continue to ride a wave of positive progress that will propel him to a convincing win on Election Day.
- Finally, regardless of which candidate they believed would win next Tuesday, most respondents indicated that the final result will be very close:
Unless Romney Ryan self-destruct, I believe they will win in a close race on Nov 6.
While it will be a close race, in the end, Obama will pull it out.
This will be very, very close.
This is the eighth and final 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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