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Mitt Romney flashes cash with his Bain partners
NBC's Mark Murray breaks down a key part of the new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll showing an essentially unchanged presidential race, with 47 percent of registered voters favoring President Obama and 44 percent favoring Mitt Romney:
Among swing-state respondents in the poll – those living in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin – Obama leads Romney, 50 to 42 percent.

Also in these swing states, Romney’s favorability numbers have dropped, possibly reflecting the toll the negative Obama TV advertisements are having on the former Massachusetts governor in these battlegrounds.

A month ago, Romney’s favorable/unfavorable score stood at 34-38 percent nationally and 36-36 percent in the 12 swing states.

But in this latest survey, his national fav/unfav score is 33-39 percent and 30-41 percent in the swing states.

In addition, the poll shows that attitudes about Romney’s business background – a frequent target in Obama ads – also are more unfavorable in these battlegrounds.

As Murray points out, on a national basis Romney's business record is seen as a positive by 23 percent of registered voters and as a negative by 28 percent. But in the swing states, it's 18 percent positive to 33 percent negative. That may partly be a result of demographics and regional differences, but it's also reflects the fact that voters in swing states are getting exposed to more information about Romney's business record, both through local media coverage and television advertising.

(One quibble with Murray: Almost all of the Obama ads that have actually gone on the air have avoided Bain, at least before the campaign's newest ad focused on outsourcing. Instead, the anti-Bain ads primarily have come from Priorities USA, the pro-Obama Super PAC and maker of terrific ads.)

Not only is Romney seen more negatively in swing states, but Obama is running stronger. As with Bain, that reflects the fact that President Obama's campaign has been focusing on those states, not just with advertising, but also presidential and vice presidential visits as well as organizing on the ground. That said, so is Mitt Romney. Between his campaign and Karl Rove's anti-Obama Super PAC, President Obama has taken a pounding in swing states.

Still, he's leading in those states, and the fact that he's leading despite Romney's aggressive campaigning is a very good sign for the President's reelection campaign, especially given the weak economic news that we began the month with. Obama has by no means closed the deal—he still needs to win the argument about whether his policies or Romney's would be better for the country's economic future—but despite Romney's best efforts, voters still blame Bush for the economic challenges we face today. That doesn't lock up victory for Obama, but given that Romney is basically proposing a return to Bush policies, it is a huge advantage for the president.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Job One meme (10+ / 0-)
    Obama has by no means closed the deal—he still needs to win the argument about whether his policies or Romney's would be better for the country's economic future—but despite Romney's best efforts, voters still blame Bush for the economic challenges we face today.

    slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:42:45 AM PDT

  •  A return to Bush's policies would be considered (9+ / 0-)

    moderate in today's republican party. No, he wants to go further back than that.

    P.S. I am not a crackpot.

    by BoiseBlue on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:43:31 AM PDT

  •  Connect the dots. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blue aardvark

    Romney = Bush, the Sequel.  Say it!  Over and over and over again, 24/7.

    Got Social Security? Thank a Democrat!

    by Fury on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:44:10 AM PDT

    •  The maturity of Romney and his homies (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fury, DarkestHour

      Follow the money, in this case if you blow up this photo one can see C-notes tucked into breast pockets, collars, behind the earpiece of a pair of glasses and a number of bills in people's teeth.  Nice image of a mature, responsible firm, eh?  They look like bank robbers.  Oh wait...

      If a lower-class dweeb steals a carton of cigarettes they can end up doing time.  Right?

      So when Bain invested ten million in a company, took out (and kept) $161 million that the company itself was on the hook for, then they declared bankruptcy and made it on out of there with $151 million of someone else's money.  Did they do any time?  Were they even investigated?  Were they sanctioned and prevented from doing that sort of business again?  Get real, we live in a world where the wealthiest are largely immune from the consequences of their actions.  The boldest and the least remorseful ones can even run for President, instead of doing ten years in prison for theft and fraud.

  •  The more Commercials Rove shoves (7+ / 0-)

    Up voters noses, the more voters don't like or believe Romney.  Because Roves narrative utterly contradicts their own life experience.

  •  Joe Scarborough perplexed, Mike consoles (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blue aardvark, Supavash

  •  If Obama Consistently Breaks 50% In Swing States (8+ / 0-)

    I don't think Romney can come back from that even with unlimited money.

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:46:40 AM PDT

  •  Mitt's in a hole......He's neither digging or (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    trying to get out.......Attempt one Mitt 'cause the dirt is falling in around you.

  •  So Team Obama has some field-tested (13+ / 0-)

    ads that they know are convincing to independent swing-state voters.

    Given enough money, they can carry the battle to Romney in every state worth contesting.

    This is how landslides start.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra En théorie, il n'y a aucune différence entre théorie et pratique, mais en pratique, il y a toujours une différence. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:54:22 AM PDT

  •  So, Romney didn't want to run on his record (13+ / 0-)

    as governor because he was a failure, so he decided to run on his experience as a "conservative businessman" and now he's going to have to run from that.

    So what, exactly, is he going to run on now?

    P.S. I am not a crackpot.

    by BoiseBlue on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:56:08 AM PDT

    •  Bingo. (9+ / 0-)

      Mitt Romney simply allowing the Bain problem to go on unanswered is a godsend to President Obama. Because that is his central rationale for being president. Once that's gone, he's got nothing left. At that point, he's disqualified and this race is over.

    •  mainlining greenbacks (0+ / 0-)

      he;s got nada

      fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

      by mollyd on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:03:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Romney is running on not being Obama (5+ / 0-)

      ...and has been from day one.

    •  ads about his Mass. record shown in NC (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina, Supavash, LillithMc, pamelabrown, Rooe

      When I hear my 13 year old son quoting from the ads, how the economy was bad in Massachusetts under Romney, I know they are getting through to unengaged voters. My son mostly watches ESPN. Most of what we see from Rove,etc. here are the ones of Obama saying "The private sector is doing fine" and that isn't very persuasive when we see the rich corporations ARE doing fine, for profits.

      George W. Bush: the worst Republican president SO FAR.

      by Chun Yang on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:07:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  His campaign is rapidly becoming "Obama sucks" (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Supavash, happymisanthropy, Rooe

      And that's not enough. Unless the incumbant is absolutely loathed, that's not enough to win you an election. It can get you your base, but swing voters needs more than just "vote for me because the other guy is a loser." They need to know what you'd do instead and how you'd be better. And since Mitt is as allergic to details as Dracula to garlic, that isn't going to happen.

      •  It has BEEN That way all along (0+ / 0-)

        The Punditocracy has been warning him that he needed to give voters a reason to vote for him, not just against his opponent. Tough to pull that off as there really isn't a reason to do so.

        •  True, but it's getting much more pronounced now (0+ / 0-)

          Mitt won't talk about his tenure as governor, his business experience is rapidly becoming a liability and he won't give any specifics on anything he plans to do as President. So now "the other guy sucks big floppy donkey dick" is all he has to offer. And it's not enough.

    •  He's running as if a CEO (0+ / 0-)

      Maybe it's just my cynicism at the corporate world, but Romney presents himself exactly like a CEO being interviewed by a business journalist: talking in generalities, relying on buzzwords, not committing himself to anything until it shows an undeniable success which he can then use to promote himself as an industry leader.

      And the bigger the corporation the guy is CEO of, the more vague he is -- unless he has established himself as an eccentric, a character, who has a winning record. (Would anyone otherwise put up with the poor social skills of a Bill Gates or the shameless womanizing of Larry Ellison?)

      The game's definitely not over, & with the SuperPAC money behind him Romney could actually squeak out a win, but if Romney continues to campaign as he has been -- as if he's a CEO trying to appease stockholders & customers -- he has a good chance of doing worse than John "I'm a war hero so I deserve to win" McCain did 4 years ago.

  •  The economic news isn't actually all that bad (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, eXtina

    even though the unemployment numbers are still persistently stagnant and the prospects from Europe look weak.

    Take a peak at home sales, for example, which in Massachusetts are rising at a steady clip for the past few months.  Single family housing starts were also up in April and May, indicating a possible rebound in the housing market.

    It was housing that got us into this crisis, and if housing is starting to come back, as manufacturing already has, then maybe, just maybe, the end really is in sight.  Employment, the lagging indicator, may actually start to take off over the summer or into the fall -- barring a European collapse, of course...

    Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free
    ¡Boycott Arizona!

    by litho on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:57:06 AM PDT

  •  What does all that mean this early? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklynbadboy, Supavash

    President Obama still enjoys an edge just by being President.

    The question for now is whether he's Jimmy Carter or George Bush and whether Mitt Romney is Ronald Reagan or John Kerry.

    I'm leaning to Obama as Bush and Romney as Kerry.

    And that's a problem for Romney, because we already know that Kerry's not enough to beat Bush and Romney couldn't be Reagan in his wildest dreams.  He doesn't have the charisma or the passion, and he doesn't seem to believe in anything except  Mitt Romney.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 07:57:40 AM PDT

    •  Romney is more Kerry (4+ / 0-)

      Than Kerry ever dreamed of being.

      "There's an iPad 3 and a Mitt Romney 4 now. They've worked the bugs out. He's not killing hobos at night anymore."

      by muzzleofbees on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:12:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Romney's much weaker than Kerry as a candidate (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      llywrch, bookbear, dinotrac

      Kerry had a considerable political resume to fall back on. Romney has one term as governor that he absolutely refuses to talk about. (Can you remember the last time a major Presidential candidate refused to talk at all about his previous political experience? I can't.)

      The 2004 analogies are good, although I don't think this will be nearly as close as that one was.

      •  Kerry also had some negatives. (0+ / 0-)

        His VVAW history (and medal tossing,etc) was not seen favorably by a segment of the population. And let us not forget I was for it before I was against it, etc.

        And -- Kerry's experience is in the legislative branch as opposed to the executive.  Governors tend to fare better than Senators in Presidential elections.  I think the only time in our history that a Senator beat somebody coming from an executive background was 1960, when Kennedy beat (depending on who you believe about Chicago) Nixon.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 09:18:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I liked Kerry (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        And it wasn't holding my nose for him. I thought it would be AWESOME to have a Vet who protested as President. He earned that right but the GOP traitors did their deed.

  •  President Obama is doing relatively well, (8+ / 0-)

    considering the abysmal approval on the economy and the even worse right track wrong track numbers. But what is really saving him is the wall of resistance to Mitt Romney.

    And that's the great thing about Bain. People who see the info about Bain over and over again become resistant to Mitt Romney and can't be won back. That is why it is such a potent attack. Romney has no argument to win those folks back once they've gotten the Bain message.

    •  'Romney has no arument'....well he sure as hell (0+ / 0-)

      better come up with one......Where the f*ck is Gillespie anyway?....musta bought a new boat....;-)

      •  The candidate is the problem. (7+ / 0-)

        Guys like Mitt Romney can't just go out and win elections. He's having a hard time on the trail connecting, and thats what usually helps you overcome your negatives. Bill Clinton was a master at this and so was Ronald Reagan.

        Romney is humorless. He's stiff. He's a privledged rich guy. He hasn't had any personal trauma (alcoholism and overcoming it really helped W, as well as growing up in West Texas). And he's a Mormon.

        •  'It was June of 1990.....$265 million was on the (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          line....I sweated......REALLY.....first time!'

        •  It's the humorless and stiff part that is killer (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          happymisanthropy, ahumbleopinion

          Look at the Bushes. Dubya was the very epitome of the privledged rich guy, but he knew how to schmooze and talk to people. And his father, well, Bush the Elder was often awkward, but he had that goofiness about him that made him likable (like his many odd language-mangling "Bushism").

          Mitt has none of those. He simply can't talk to people and at times he seems like an alien masquerading as a human and doing a poor job of it.

        •  actually he could if he talked about his auto (0+ / 0-)

          accident in France which would gain religious points but get negated by any affirmation of his Mormonism

          slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

          by annieli on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:17:35 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Exhibit 20 million (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          skillet, llywrch, MBishop1

          But the mock outrage over the Red Sox joke by the President. There aren't 5 people on the planet that buy Mitt Romney even knows where Fenway Park is let alone who Kevin Youkilis is and he was the damn governor of the f'n state!!

          I would have LOVED to see this clown try to pull it off on his own. He would have offered up some claptrap about how he knows bankers and CEOs that sit behind home plate to watch the players wearing red socks throw just right round balls and try to hit them with sticks fashioned from ash trees.


  •  Swing states... (0+ / 0-)

    I think the difference in swing states might be the ads, but also because any national polling is so slanted by the visceral, overwhelming hatred toward President Obama in many states. The margins by which he will lose in the south are far great than those by which he will win in the coastal north.

    I wonder how the swing states compare to the country at large minus the hate-Obama states.

  •  Obama will win (8+ / 0-)

    It's going to be a tough fight, but he's doing well in the swing states.

    I'm pulling out all the stops to help him get re-elected, I'm sure everyone else here is doing the same.

    "We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty." Edward R. Murrow

    by Betty Pinson on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:03:57 AM PDT

  •  'The Dark Knight Rises' - Co-incidence? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jck, happymisanthropy, Matt Z

    Or Hollywood CONSPIRACY?? In which Batman, the Dark Knight (Obama?), battles the arch-villain Bane (Bain?), who is trying to destroy Batman and establish himself as ultimate ruler over Gotham City (the US?)!

    Do you really think its an accident that the filmmakers chose 'Bane' as the villain at this time, instead of a more politically neutral villain, such as 'Egghead', 'King Tut', or even 'Marsha, the Queen of Diamonds'? CLEARLY a socialist Hollywood plot to demonize Mitt Romney and Bain Capital, presenting them as evil while creating more hero worship of Obama!

    Daryll Issa needs to launch an investigation of this.

    Romney 2012 - Are there no prisons? Are there no workhouses? If they would rather die, then they had better do so, and decrease the surplus population!

    by Fordmandalay on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:06:32 AM PDT

  •  Romney's campaign shows same pattern as Kerry's... (0+ / 0-)

    We ran an "anyone but Dubya" campaign in 2004 and it was a disaster.

    Just like the right turned Kerry's military service into a weakness, Romney's claim to fame is now his albatross.

    I don't care what Rove or some of the hand wringers here say.....we have wisely spent some big $$ early and defined Romney (honestly) and there is nothing he can do now to resuscitate his business reputation. He's a vulture, an offshorer, who tore down companies and sent jobs to China. He's wants tax breaks for his millionaire buddies and he wants to stick the middle class with the tab.

    He can't whitewash this. And now he has to run on...."anyone but Obama." It won't work.

  •  To know Romney, is to dislike Romney (0+ / 0-)

    Romney has been campaigning in many of the swing states for more than a year, but his fav/unfav score is getting worse.

  •  The pain of Bain will give Romney a migraine. (0+ / 0-)

    Obama needs to hit this relentlessly.

  •  Latest Polling Looks Good (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but let's face it, if Obama can't readily beat Rmoney, who is so utterly phony and who is nothing but a cardboard cutout representing the 1%, then again, the democratic party is in serious trouble.

    voters are fed up with not just Rmoney the CEO, they've had it with ALL CEO's... the enormous pay disparity, the lack of job creation, enormous profits while tax dodging/paying ZERO taxes, etc.

    "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

    by Superpole on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:22:23 AM PDT

    •  People are hurting, bad, right now.... (0+ / 0-)

      If we didn't have someone with so much charisma, savvy, and built up goodwill, we'd be getting crushed. Its practically a miracle we're even in this thing.

      Fortunately, people understand that you can't get out of a hole being dug for 8 years in 3.

  •  This is a unique opportunity to do some (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    real damage to Republicans nationally. Start a special fund to show the ads nationally or in selected almost-or-future swing states and we will pick up a few House seats as a bonus.

    We have only just begun and none too soon.

    by global citizen on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:24:58 AM PDT

  •  The fact that negative ads work reinforces... (0+ / 0-) lack of faith in the wisdom of the American people.  Whether they trash my candidate or the other guy does not matter.  No one ought to be that big a dummy that they would let their opinion be swayed by a negative ad.  We are a nation of imbeciles.  Alas, I could never run for office.  I could neither run negative ads nor stand up and say that old standard pander "I believe in the faith and common sense of the American people."  That and I smoked pot in college.

    "The opposite of faith is not doubt. It's certainty."

    by Simul Iustus et Peccator on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:30:14 AM PDT

    •  Except The Ads Are Not Negative - They Tell The (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Simul Iustus et Peccator

      truth about RMoney's record at Bain Capital. As Harry Truman said "I never did give anybody hell, I just told the truth, and they thought it was hell." Most people (except some low info. voters) make up their minds to vote for a particular candidate based on a number of things - very few people are single issue voters. The Bain ads fit into the overall narrative about RMoney - that he is an out of touch,  privileged rich guy, and really doesn't care if you (or your relatives or friends) lose their jobs, as long as he makes money. Look at these ads as one piece in a jigsaw puzzle about RMoney. The other pieces of the puzzle "let Detroit go bankrupt" etc. show Americans the true picture of who RMoney is. The Obama campaign needs to keep pounding this narrative into the public's mind, because it's working. In addition, RMoney is the one who brought up the subject of his days at Bain Capital - his real record there (not his whitewashed record) is fair game for the Obama campaign.

      •  If the truth is itself negative (0+ / 0-)

        then a truthful ad is a negative ad. Much as people dislike negative ads, they have a place even in an honest campaign, and especially for an incumbent president who can't move people's image of himself that much with ads.

        Male, 22, -4.75/-6.92, born and raised TN-05, now WI-02, remorseless supporter of Walker's recall. Pocan for Congress and Baldwin for Senate!

        by fearlessfred14 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 12:29:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  happy (0+ / 0-)

    happy obama campaign listen to Kos and (Daily Kos members ) who have been screaming to hit Romney with Bain  

    also happy that Obama did NOT listen to Bill Clinton or Cory Booker who thought the Bain attacks were not smart strategy

    "Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative." - John Stuart Mill

    by smartone on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 08:36:12 AM PDT

  •  and the best thing is, (0+ / 0-)

    that what they hate him for, is what he'll keep doing, to try and win them back.

    "A recent study reveals Americans' heads are larger than they were 150 years ago but sadly there is no indication that the extra room is used for anything." - entlord

    by AlyoshaKaramazov on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 09:21:39 AM PDT

  •  New W (0+ / 0-)

    Willard Mitt Romney
    The new W

  •  Is Michigan really a "swing" state? (0+ / 0-)

    I hate to sound overconfident, but has Romney ever been ahead in any Michigan poll?  Or is it considered a swing state because his dad was Governor?

    •  The statehouse is in Republican control (0+ / 0-)

      so it's understandable a lot of pundits assume this home-court advantage is worth 5-10 percentage points in the polls.

      Ohio & Wisconsin are also considered toss-ups by some, despite clear Obama leads, & the Republicans have the home-court advantage in those states too.

      •  I'm not sure "home-court advantage" works that way (0+ / 0-)

        and certainly it isn't worth 5-10 points (5 is even a strong home-state advantage for a presidential candidate). The only way it could work that way is if the governor was rather popular (rare these days) and could be tied to the presidential candidate. For example, Obama probably gets no boost from Tomblin in WV (too conservative) or Purdue in NC (too unpopular). Snyder (MI) and Kasich (OH) are, if anything, drags on Romney due to their unpopularity.

        Male, 22, -4.75/-6.92, born and raised TN-05, now WI-02, remorseless supporter of Walker's recall. Pocan for Congress and Baldwin for Senate!

        by fearlessfred14 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 12:41:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  We need a new Bain ad every few weeks between now (0+ / 0-)

    and the election.  A new example needs to stay constantly fresh in people's minds or they'll just forget.

  •  But Bill Clinton, Ed Rendell and Carville said... (0+ / 0-)

    Oh, who cares?

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