President Obama’s once-substantial popularity edge over Republican foe Mitt Romney has tightened considerably, according to a new Washington Post/ABC News poll.
Fifty-two percent of adults view Obama favorably, the survey found, while 45 percent see him unfavorably. That’s a 9-point swing from the same survey taken a month ago, when 56 percent felt positively about the president and 40 percent didn’t.
Conversely, Romney’s ratings have risen: 41 percent view him favorably while 44 percent don’t, a marked improvement since April, when only 35 percent held a positive view of the GOP nominee and 47 percent didn’t.
The two candidates' popularity has tightened even further among registered voters, a stricter screen that typically shows better results for Republicans. Only 49 percent of voters view the president favorably, compared with 48 percent who don’t. Romney's favorable/unfavorable rating, meanwhile, is split at 44 percent.
Other polls show a less-pronounced trend: A Wall Street Journal/NBC News survey released last week reported that the White House incumbent was viewed positively by 49 percent of adults and negatively by 41 percent. Romney was still underwater in public perception, 34 percent to 38 percent, although the poll showed him improving since turning the corner on the GOP nomination in March.
The Post/ABC poll, conducted May 23 to 27, surveyed 1,021 adults and had a sampling error of plus-or-minus 3.5 points.