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Poll: A Vote for the GOP Is Only a Vote Against Obama Poll: A Vote for the GOP Is Only a Vote Against Obama

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Poll: A Vote for the GOP Is Only a Vote Against Obama

photo of Julia Edwards
October 6, 2011

Sarah Palin and Chris Christie are now officially out of the running for the Republican presidential bid, and the two remaining front-runners share the same positive quality—they are not Obama. A Pew Research Center poll released on Thursday revealed that 31 percent of Mitt Romney supporters and 33 percent of Rick Perry supporters view their votes as a blow against Obama rather than a vote for their respective candidates.

Conversely, Obama supporters view a vote for Obama as a symbol of their approval for the president. Thirty-three percent of voters who chose Obama over Romney did so as a vote in favor of Obama, while only 15 percent supported Obama because they were against Romney. A nearly identical pattern holds true in a vote between Obama and Perry.

The  results are typical of an incumbent running against lesser-known challengers, but the current economic climate—and the job that Obama does to improve it—is becoming the largest factor driving preferences in the election campaign. Such a risk is driving the president to push his jobs bill with increasing fervor while Perry and Romney fight to differentiate themselves as more than “not Obama.”

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