News / USA

Poll: Unhappy Swing Voters Still Back Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama reacts to supporters during a campaign event in Rochester, New Hampshire, August 18, 2012.
U.S. President Barack Obama reacts to supporters during a campaign event in Rochester, New Hampshire, August 18, 2012.
VOA News
A new poll shows that a majority of voters in 12 key U.S. swing states feel they are worse off than they were four years ago, yet still support President Barack Obama over his presumptive Republican rival, Mitt Romney.

The results of the survey, conducted jointly by the USA Today newspaper and the Gallup polling agency, were published Monday. They show that when respondents were asked "Are you better off than you were four years ago?" those in the swing states (competitive states most likely to swing the Electoral College in the November 6 presidential election) answered "no" by 56-42 percent. Voters polled in all 50 states answered "no" by 55-42 percent.

Forty-four percent of the respondents in the swing states described the condition of the U.S. economy as "only fair," 41 percent called it poor and just 14 percent called it good. Seven out of ten respondents in the swing states and 72 percent nationwide said they are unhappy with the way things are going in the country, with just 28 percent in the swing states and 26 nationwide saying they are satisfied.

Still, the poll found that President Obama leads Romney in the swing states, 47-44 percent, while Romney leads in the non-battleground states, 47-45 percent.

The 12 swing states surveyed are Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

On Sunday, the two campaigns continued to debate various contentious issues, including Romney's tax returns. Last week, the Romney's campaign rejected the Obama campaign's call for Romney to release five years of tax returns.

In January, Romney released his full tax returns for 2010 and a summary of the taxes he paid in 2011.

Appearing on Fox News Sunday, Obama campaign senior adviser Robert Gibbs defended the call and said it was a relevant issue.

"Look, Mitt Romney is a highly educated man and he has clearly made a decision that what is in those tax returns is far more damaging to him than to do what every presidential candidate has done which is show the American people your personal finances," he said.

Romney senior campaign senior adviser Ed Gillespie responded by questioning why tax disclosures were not an issue during Obama's first presidential race.

"It was not an issue in 2008 because President Obama was not trying to distract from a four-year-long record of failed policies," said Gillespie.

Obama released eight years of tax returns when running for office in 2008.

Gillespie indicated Romney would make public his 2011 tax return by mid-October.

You May Like

Video In US, Columbus Day Still Generates Controversy

Holiday marks date Columbus discovered Americas, but some are offended by legacy because he enslaved many natives he encountered More

Video Through Sports, Austria Tries to Give Migrants Traction

With 85,000 people expected to claim asylum in Austria this year, its government has made integration through joint physical activities a key objective More

Video Kickboxing Champion Shares Sport With Young Migrants

Pouring into Europe by hundreds of thousands, some migrants, especially youngsters, are finding sports a way to integrate into new host countries More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: lisa e johnson from: virginia
August 23, 2012 2:29 PM
i work for the obama camp in farmville, Va. talking to people black and white (esp. white) only care about themselves and not our children, their children, the future. they are plain rude and ignorant of facts. when we asked what they thought obama was doing wrong they could not answer, and we had more hang ups than i ever had in past camps i've worked for. i live in a democratic county, buckingham, but we were calling people in prince edward. if anyone remembers prince edward was the last county in the state to segregate. in fact they have since apologized to those kids (now adults) that attended school at that time, and have since preserved the school as a landmark. the field officer and myself were the only two that showed up to work the phones.
working at a two college town i find this area so uninformed and self absorbed. i will not give up. obama must win, if they think the romney /ryan ticket will or is going to help low income families they better look again!

by: Ed
August 22, 2012 4:41 AM
Think Obama will get re-elected?

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
August 21, 2012 2:54 AM
Romny looks like too rich. Which is larger, the rich or the poor, in America? If all people registrate and the voting rate rises, Obama would win on presidential primary.

by: OurkidshavenofuturewOBAMA from: East Coast
August 20, 2012 6:44 PM
Obama will bankrupt America! If he is re-elected there will be no leash holding him back from putting us under the largest debt in history. All of the debt cummulatively tallied from his predecessors can not compare to the burben Obama is placing on our childrens' backs. Wake up America...he is a wolf in sheeps clothing.
In Response

by: John Marston
August 21, 2012 5:08 PM
Revisionist history my friend. It was the work of Bush, Cheney, et al that almost bankrupted Amercia. Obama was elected AFTER the sub-prime mortgage crisis. People like you seem to dislike America as you want the same group that nearly ruined it to come back to power...If the Republicans are re-elected, then America will truly be bankrupt and no amount of "Yes We Can" will be able to save us then.

by: Christopher London, Esq. from: New York
August 20, 2012 5:32 PM
I absolutely do believe that Mitt Romney has something to hide. I went to Boston University, graduated with high honors in Economics. I then got my J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School (one of the country's Top 10 law schools). I practiced law with leading Wall Street and Boston Financial District law firms. I had friends who worked at Bain Consulting which worked in concert with Bain Capital during Romney's tenure with the firm. I worked with so called management consulting and turnaround firms. Bain definitely pushed the envelope. Romney is far from a moral, decent or ethical man.
American Presidential candidates in both parties have been rather consistent in the number of returns that they have made public. Ronald Reagan made seven years available; George H.W. Bush released three years; and Romney’s father, George, made 12 years of returns public in his 1968 presidential bid. Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have released 12 years of returns. As stated by the President and I concur. “I think people want to know that, you know, everybody’s been playing by the same rules, including people who are seeking the highest office in the land.”

ROMNEY RULES: It is clear that Romney operates by his own rules and has no tolerance into any probing inquiries into his financial affairs and elements of his background which illustrate the character of a craven con-man. Now, I do not want to suggest that Mitt Romney is an International Financial Racketeer because he has not yet been convicted. But given his propensity for squirreling funds in obscure locations around the world, $100 millon in IRA's off-shore, his involvement in the Son of Boss Tax Avoidance Scheme, the Italian Job where he skirted the tax liability to the Italian government combined with his propensity for incessant lying on a daily basis and his paying a 13% tax rate and it taking months for him to get even one full return public i illustrates a man profoundly sketchy, hollow and shady man who is rather deeply uncomfortable with himself and inquiry into his affairs.

The veil of secrecy surrounding the Mormon Pinocchio's financial, religious and business affairs illustrates a deeply clandestine and Nixonian manner. Sure Romney may be innocent, but I am pretty sure that if this was the 1980's, U.S. Attorney Rudy Guiliani would have indicted Mitt Romney for Tax Fraud, RICO Act violations and subject his conduct to scrutiny under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by now. Only Mitt Romney knows whether he is a simple Pinocchio, a Charles Ponzi, a Mini Mormon Madoff or perhaps even a Benedict Arnold. But if he wants to be President, he needs to dislcose.

In Response

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
August 21, 2012 4:53 AM
Who's paying for this? This appears to be like a paid avert or a paid agent detailed to run Romney down. Christopher must be a shady man with a shady heart too, supporter of Iran and everything ungodly; all the attack just because Mitt Romney is a Christian. Have you thought about the future of USA? Have you seen the pace at which US is sinking into debt? Have you seen the rate at which USA is deteriorating while China and other emerging economies are fast racing to overtake? Have you not seen how much lip service has been paid to job creation? How far do you want America to deteriorate before you start waking up?

by: TechnoPeasant from: Earth
August 20, 2012 4:54 PM

We can't discuss Mitts foreign policy for fear he has none.
We can't discuss Mitts personal finances for fear he's taken privileged advantage.
We can't discuss Mitts governorship for fear he looks like Obama's best pick for Veep.
We can't discuss his business experience for fear he personally pioneered outsourcing for profit.

Romney isn't capable of fixing the economy because it's people just like him that brought us to this point in the first place.
During the financial crisis, Citigroup hired Bain & Co to determine how to separate its commercial and investment banking operations.
They concluded "tax considerations" made a breakup "inefficient".

"The untroubled self-confidence of the psychopath seems almost like an impossible dream ..."

by: Mark from: Farmington, NM
August 20, 2012 4:49 PM
Political power from Obama is based on the populis of a great fusion of those disfanchised but remain loyal to the President. The public is afraid to let go what they feel is a popular alternative to old ideas that has shown no idealism. Most of all many of Obama's pledges have been answered and some not so popular have not gone well, but the economy seems to be moving and hiring trends are growing at a small pace but lot better when he took office.

by: John Q. Public from: Everywhere
August 20, 2012 1:41 PM
No excuses when it comes time to vote
We keep getting reminded of the true core values of the baggers and the republican party: misogynist, racist, paranoid, insecure faux christians that haven't evolved any further than their Afghanistan equivalents

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
August 20, 2012 1:26 PM
Americans are like babies who cannot identify their left from their right. Things are moving in the wrong direction and you still want the man who has caused you most pain to continue to lead you? How absurd that is! Sounds like suicide. Mitt Romney should go into deeper prayers for his country to be liberated from that confusion, after all as the number one citizen (soon to be) he's going to have that responsibility to his country not only to liberate them economically but also to return USA to what it should be - GOD'S OWN COUNTRY.
In Response

by: Adam from: U.S.A.
August 21, 2012 10:03 AM
(re. Godwin's comment: "Mitt Romney ... [will] have that responsibility to his country not only to liberate them economically but also to return USA to what it should be - GOD'S OWN COUNTRY.")

You seem to think that it is a President's job to impose some religion or another on the nation. Some Americans (mistakenly) agree with that proposition, and those who do are generally evangelical Christians. Mitt Romney, however, is not a Christian -- he is a Mormon. Most evangelical Christians identify Mormonism as a non-Christian cult. I'm sure that will not help energize the Evangelical segment of the Republican base. This is a major problem for Romney. Don't be surprised if it costs him the election.
In Response

by: Adam from: Middle Class, U.S.A.
August 21, 2012 9:45 AM
(in reply to Godwin's comment: "you still want the man who has caused you most pain to continue to lead you")

The man who is most at fault for causing this mess, George W. Bush, was defeated in the last election. President Obama is doing the best anyone could do given the bad hand he was dealt and the non-cooperation of an obstructionist Congress. He deserves another four years.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Amnesty Accuses Saudi Coalition of ‘War Crimes’ in Yemeni
Henry Ridgwell
October 12, 2015 4:03 PM
The human rights group Amnesty International has accused the Saudi-led coalition of war crimes in airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen. Henry Ridgwell reports the group says hundreds of civilians have been killed in strikes on residential areas.

Video Amnesty Accuses Saudi Coalition of ‘War Crimes’ in Yemen

The human rights group Amnesty International has accused the Saudi-led coalition of war crimes in airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen. Henry Ridgwell reports the group says hundreds of civilians have been killed in strikes on residential areas.

Video No Resolution in Sight to US House Speaker Drama

Uncertainty grips the U.S. Congress, where no consensus replacement has emerged to succeed Republican House Speaker John Boehner after his surprise resignation announcement. Half of Congress is effectively leaderless weeks before America risks defaulting on its national debt and enduring another partial government shutdown.

Video New Art Exhibit Focuses on Hope

Out of struggle and despair often comes hope. That idea is behind a new art exhibit at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. "The Big Hope Show" features 25 artists, some of whom overcame trauma and loss. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Columbus Day Still Generates Controversy as US Holiday

The second Monday of October is Columbus Day in the United States, honoring explorer Christopher Columbus and his discovery of the Americas. The achievement is a source of pride for many, but for some the holiday is marked by controversy. Adrianna Zhang has more.

Video Anger Simmers as Turks Begin to Bury Blast Victims

The Turkish army carried out new air strikes on Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targets on Sunday, a day after the banned group announced a unilateral cease fire. The air raids apparently are in retaliation for the Saturday bombing in Turkey's capital Ankara that killed at least 95 people and wounded more than 200 others. But as Zlatica Hoke reports, there are suspicions that Islamic State is involved.

Video Bombings a Sign of Turkey’s Deep Troubles

Turkey has begun a three-day period of mourning following Saturday’s bomb attacks in the capital, Ankara, that killed nearly 100 people. With contentious parliamentary elections three weeks away, the attacks highlight the challenges Turkey is facing as it struggles with ethnic friction, an ongoing migrant crisis, and growing tensions with Russia. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video Afghanistan’s Progress Aided by US Academic Center

Recent combat in Afghanistan has shifted world attention back to the central Asian nation’s continuing civil war and economic challenges. But, while there are many vexing problems facing Afghanistan’s government and people, a group of academics in Omaha, Nebraska has kept a strong faith in the nation’s future through programs to improve education. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Omaha, Nebraska.

Video House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdraws

The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video German, US Officials Investigate Volkswagen

German officials have taken steps to restore some of the reputation their car industry has lost after a recent Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal. Authorities have searched Volkswagen headquarters and other locations in an effort to identify the culprits in the creation of software that helps cheat on emission tests. Meanwhile, a group of lawmakers in Washington held a hearing to get to the bottom of the cheating strategy that was first discovered in the United States. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Why Are Gun Laws So Hard for Congress to Tackle?

Since taking office, President Barack Obama has spoken out or issued statements about 15 mass shootings. The most recent shooting, in which 10 people were killed at a community college, sparked outrage over the nation's gun laws. But changing those laws isn't as easy as many think. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.

Video In 'He Named Me Malala,' Guggenheim Finds Normal in Extraordinary

Davis Guggenheim’s documentary "He Named Me Malala" offers a probing look into the life of 18-year-old Malala Yousafsai, the Pakistani teenager who, in 2012, was shot in the head by the Taliban for standing up for her right to education in her hometown in Pakistan's Swat Valley. Guggenheim shows how, since then, Malala has become a symbol not as a victim of brutal violence, but as an advocate for girls’ education throughout the world. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.

Video Paintable Solar Cells May Someday Replace Silicon-Based Panels

Solar panels today are still factory-manufactured, with the use of some highly toxic substances such as cadmium chloride. But a researcher at St. Mary’s College, Maryland, says we are close to being able to create solar panels by painting them on a suitable surface, using nontoxic solutions. VOA’s George Putic reports.

VOA Blogs