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Political Insiders Poll

On a scale of zero (no chance) to 10 (virtual certainty), how likely is it that President Obama will win reelection?


Average (now): 7.7
Average (4/28): 7.1


Slight chance (1-3): 0%
Moderate chance (4-6): 15%
Strong chance (7-10) : 85%


Moderate Chance (4-6)


“This is still closer than people think, and money does work.”

“Although his campaign has been far superior, foreign-policy and economic challenges will get bigger.”

Strong Chance (7-10)

“Unemployment at 8 percent, unrest in the Middle East, economy growing very slowly, yet he’s still beating Romney, who may be the most uninspiring candidate to ever run for the presidency.”


“Numbers in swing states are all trending in the right direction—I would put it at 8, but there is still too much time and anything can happen.”

“Right now, it increasingly looks like a dissatisfied electorate, given a dissatisfying choice, will see a dissatisfying outcome: the reelection of the lesser of two evils.”

“Absent something overseas or some horrific domestic attack, it’s time to get the fork. Romney is done.”

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“Thank goodness for Obama’s secret weapon as revealed on SNL: Mitt Romney.”

“Romney has given away two of the last eight weeks of this campaign with his Libya comments and now the ‘47 percent’ video. Coming on the heels of a poor convention, the wheels are coming off.”

“The reason Romney can’t change voters’ perception of him is because their perception is accurate.”

“Only chance left for Romney is to trip up Obama in the first debate. Good luck.”

“It’s tough to win when your strategy is shooting yourself in the face every day, which is about the only thing the Romney campaign can do consistently.”

“The governor could have won but doesn’t even connect to the Republican-leaning upper-middle class in Ohio. I haven’t seen something like this since Dukakis ran for president.”

“The cooler candidate always wins the presidency. Obama is cooler.”



On a scale of zero (no chance) to 10 (virtual certainty), how likely is it that President Obama will win reelection?


Average (now): 5.8
Average (4/28): 5.0

Slight chance (1-3): 2%
Moderate chance (4-6): 71%
Strong chance (7-10) : 27%


Moderate chance (4-6)

“It is very hard to beat an incumbent president, even one who doesn’t deserve reelection.”

“The president has held the upper hand in spite of the environment throughout the race. To date, we have done nothing to change that fact.”

“Romney still not closing the sale. Boston is not using one-third of the arguments and research available to blitz the Dems. But Obama still below 50 percent, and economy still sucks.”

“Don’t believe the hype. Obama is off Bush’s 2004 margin at this point in race by 3 points.”

“Romney remains competitive virtually everywhere he needs to win, despite weeks of feckless campaigning. This means that voters are cringing at the idea of four more years of Obama.”

“If Romney would supply some detailed plans, he could still win. Obama is highly vulnerable. But we’re six weeks out, and the alternative vision isn’t yet there.”

“His standing is improving in public polls, he received a bump out of the convention; but the debates will be a turning point, and Romney has a lot of money and still has a good chance to pull it out.”

“Despite the media story line that Mitt is Tom Dewey redux, voters will check their wallets and only moths will emerge. Obama can’t talk his way to victory.”

Strong chance (7-10)

“The only things that will beat him is: a) He misfires during the debates, or b) Some externality, another blowup in the Middle East or in the Pacific.”

“Romney appears to be on worse track than the economy.”

“Time is running out for Mitt Romney. He either over-performs in the debates or kisses this one good-bye.”



Which candidate has the more effective campaign team?


Barack Obama: 96%
Mitt Romney: 4%



“The almost complete absence of specificity by Romney is stunning.”

“Any doubt about that question was settled during the two conventions. Chicago 2.0 is still a pretty darn good operation.”

“Obama’s team has the easier job—they are the default candidate, and it is almost always difficult to defeat an incumbent. All that said, I can’t tell if they are better than the Romney team, or if Romney just isn’t capable of being a good candidate. I think it is both.”

This article appears in the September 22, 2012 edition of National Journal Magazine.

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