Poll: Obama Up By 5 In Virginia

A new poll from Public Policy Polling puts Barack Obama ahead of Mitt Romney in Virginia by five points, outside the margin of error:

PPP’s newest Virginia poll finds Barack Obama leading by 5 points, 51-46. Obama’s lead is unchanged from a month ago when we found him leading 50-45 in the state. He may not be seeing a bump from the convention in the state at this point, but he was in a pretty good position to begin with.

Virginia continues to look like it may be something of a firewall state for Obama. PPP has now polled it 9 times this cycle, and President Obama has led by at least 4 points on all 9 of the polls. He’s been ahead by 5 points, 5 points, 8 points, and 8 points over the course of the four surveys we’ve conducted in 2012.

Obama has a slight advantage over Romney (49-47) in terms of who voters trust more on the economy and a wider (51-45) edge over Romney on foreign policy. Only 41% of voters say they approve of how Romney reacted to the situation in Libya this week while 48% express disapproval.

Obama’s leading 56-42 with women, 91-7 with African Americans, 63-30 with other non-white voters, and 56-37 with young voters. Romney has a 51-45 advantage with men, a 57-40 one with whites, and a 54-43 lead with seniors. Romney is slightly ahead with independents, 47-45, but Obama’s party is more unified with Democrats supporting him 95-4 while Republicans go for Romney by a slightly weaker 92-7 margin.

The poll also shows that Obama supporters in the Old Dominion are more enthusiastic than Romney supporters across the board, which is potentially a bad sign for Romney in November. As I noted last week, Mitt Romney potentially has a problem in the state thanks to the presence on the ballot of two third-party candidates that may peel votes away from him, former Virginia Congressman Virgil Goode and former New Mexico Gary Johnson. Here’s how the race pans out when those, and other third party candidates are included in the race:

  • Obama — 49%
  • Romney — 45%
  • Johnson — 2%
  • Goode — 1%
  • Jill Stein (Green Party) — 1%
  • Undecided — 3%

It’s not always easy to determine how much support third-party candidates will get on Election Day based on polls. Quite often, people who say that will vote third-party in response to a poll end up voting for a major party candidate. Nonetheless, at the moment there’s a 4 point gap between Obama and Romney, and Johnson and Goode are grabbing 3% of the vote. The potential for the two of them, individually or together, to have an impact on a race that is likely going to be very close all the way to November 6th is still very real.

Obama continues to hold a slight 1.5 point advantage in the RCP Poll Average, but, at the moment, the chart shows definite movement in his favor:

So far, the President seems to be maintaining a slim, but comfortable and consistent, lead here in Virginia. If that continues through the rest of the election season, Mitt Romney is going to find it hard to get to 270.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, Public Opinion Polls, US Politics, , , , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. DC Loser says:

    The Obama canvassers have been out and about but no sign of any Romney ones.

  2. michael reynolds says:

    Just in case Tsar fails to come by, I’ll do this for him:

    Tsar Nicholas: I stopped reading once you said, “poll.”

    It’s the stupid economy!

    Media: bad.

  3. Gromitt Gunn says:

    @michael reynolds: I’m sure that somehow public employee unions in Zombieland factor into it, also.

  4. Mr. Replica says:

    Could this little bit of a lead be a pre-cursor for an even larger lead next week?

    I ask this because of the recent abortion clinic debacle there in Virginia. (You know, the one where the republican AG and Governor strong-armed the state health council into helping shut down the clinics?)
    Maybe those who are against that sort of action being taken, see that the republican candidate for president is in league with those very state leaders. Meaning if they do not agree with the actions taken at the state level, of course they wouldn’t want it tried to be done at the federal level?

  5. DC Loser says:

    Oh yes, our beloved AG, Ken “the Kook” Cuccinelli. Obviously things are slow in the AG office in Richmond for him to be threatening the state health council and the UVA administration. Man, I hope he gets the GOP nod for the next governor’s race.

  6. mattb says:

    @michael reynolds:
    Good idea… here’s @JKB’s:

    The Journolist is creating new polls created by surveying only the Liberal Arts educated college graduates who are destroying our country.