Rasmussen Daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday, October 23, 2012: Romney 50%; Obama 46%

Rasmussen Reports
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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows Mitt Romney attracting support from 50% of voters nationwide, while President Obama earns the vote from 46%. One percent (1%) prefers some other candidate, and two percent (2%) are undecided.

Other than brief convention bounces, this is the first time either candidate has led by more than three points in months. See daily tracking history.

Romney attracts support from 89% of Republican voters. The president earns the vote from 82% of Democrats. Among those not affiliated with either major party, the GOP challenger leads by nine.

These updates are based upon nightly telephone interviews and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. As a result, virtually all of the interviews for today’s update were completed before the end of last night’s final presidential debate. It will take a few days to see if the debate had a significant impact on the race.

Matchup results are updated daily at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily e-mail update).

Republicans now have a one-point edge on the Generic Congressional Ballot. For most of the past few years, Republicans have enjoyed a larger advantage on this basic measure of the nation’s political mood. Over the past month or so, however, it has been close to even just about every week.

New polling data shows Democratic Congressman Chris Murphy up by a point over Republican businesswoman Linda McMahon in Connecticut’s U.S. Senate race.  The Rasmussen ReportsSenate Balance of Power rankings project that Democrats will end up with 48 Senate seats, the Republicans 47, with five remaining Toss-Ups. In addition to Connecticut, the races inMassachusettsMontana,  Virginia  and Wisconsin remain Toss-Ups.

New data will be released today for Senate races in North Dakota and Arizona.

In the Rasmussen Reports Electoral College projections, the president has 237 Electoral Votes and Romney 235. The magic number needed to win the White House is 270. Seven states with 66 Electoral College votes remain Toss-ups: OhioVirginiaWisconsinColorado,  Iowa,  Nevada and New Hampshire. 

(Presidential Job Approval Data Below)

A president’s job approval rating is one of the best indicators for assessing his chances of reelection. Typically, the president’s job approval rating on Election Day will be close to the share of the vote he receives. Currently, 50% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the president’s job performance. Forty-nine percent (49%) at least somewhat disapprove (see trends).

In an election where the economy is the key issue, 60% trust their own judgment on economic matters more than they trust the president’s. Fifty-seven percent (57%) trust their own judgment more than Romney’s. Among voters not affiliated with either major political party, 66% trust their own economic judgment more than the president’s, and 56% say the same of Romney‘s.

Overall, 42% give the president good or excellent ratings for handling the economy.  Forty-five percent (45%) say he’s doing a poor job.

Americans over 65 are evenly divided as to whether it is better to work part-time or be fully retired.  Most of those aged 40-64 think that working part-time will be better than complete retirement.

The economy, the debates and the Electoral College were the topics on this week’s edition ofWhat America Thinks . Scott Rasmussen’s new weekly television show is seen on more than 60 stations nationwide. If you’d like Scott to speak to your organization, meeting or conference, please contact Premiere Speakers.

Rasmussen Reports is a media company whose work is followed by millions on a wide variety of platforms. In addition to the new TV show, we regularly release our work at RasmussenReports.com, through a daily email newsletter, a nationally syndicated radio news service, an online video service and a weekly newspaper column distributed by Creators Syndicate.

Rasmussen Reports polling tends to show less volatility than other polls for a variety of reasons. In 2008, we showed virtually no change during the final 40 days of the campaign.  Then-candidate Obama was between 50% and 52% in our polling every single day. He generally held a five- or six-point lead, occasionally bouncing up to an eight-point advantage and only once falling below a four point-lead. This stable assessment of the race is consistent with the reality of what we know about voter behavior. Obama won the election by a 53% to 46% margin.

To get a sense of longer-term Job Approval trends for the president, Rasmussen Reports compiles our tracking data on a full month-by-month basis.

(Approval Index data below)

Intensity of support or opposition can have an impact on campaigns. Currently, 26% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way Obama is performing as president. Forty-two percent (42%) Strongly Disapprove, giving him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -16 (see trends).

Platinum Members can review additional information from the tracking poll on a daily basis.

During midterm elections, intensity of support can have a tremendous impact on turnout. That was demonstrated in 2010 when Republicans and unaffiliated voters turned out in large numbers to express opposition to the Obama administration’s policies. However, in presidential election years, there is a smaller impact on turnout. Still, all indications so far for Election 2012 suggest that Republicans are more engaged and more likely to turn out.

(More below)

Rasmussen Reports has been a pioneer in the use of automated telephone polling techniques, but many other firms still utilize their own operator-assisted technology (see methodology). Pollsters for Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton have cited our “unchallenged record for both integrity and accuracy.” During Election 2008, Rasmussen Reports projected that Barack Obama would defeat John McCain by a 52% to 46% margin. Obama was 53% to 46%. In 2004, Rasmussen Reports was the only firm to project the vote totals for both candidates within half a percentage point. Learn more about the Rasmussen Reports track record over the years.

Daily tracking results are collected via telephone surveys of 500 likely voters per night and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. To reach those who have abandoned traditional landline telephones, Rasmussen Reports uses an online survey tool to interview randomly selected participants from a demographically diverse panel. The margin of sampling error for the full sample of 1,500 Likely Voters is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Results are also compiled on a full-week basis and crosstabs for full-week results are available for Platinum Members.

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