Santorum Beats Obama In Four Battleground States; Romney Trails Obama In Those States


Another blow to the Romney “electability” argument, from Rasmussen Reports:

Santorum leads the president 48% to 44% in the so-called Core Four states. Five percent (5%) prefer some other candidate in this matchup, and two percent (2%) are undecided. This marks a shift from last week, when the president was slightly ahead of Santorum.  (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Obama remains ahead of Romney 46% to 42%, showing no change from last week. Six percent (6%) prefer some other candidate in this matchup, and six percent (6%) are undecided.

The “Core Four” states are Florida, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia. These are well-known swing states. Virginia is probably the least swingy (is that a word?) of the four, going Democratic in 2008 but voting Republican in presidential elections from 1968-2004.

Polls of battleground states are a lot more indicative than nationwide polls, because we don’t elect presidents based on a national public vote, we elect presidents state-by-state, so a few states flipping can change the whole election. We also know that both parties are going to have states that they’re highly unlikely to lose; Obama is all but certain to take California and Massachusetts, for example, and whoever the GOP candidate is will probably win in Utah and Montana. So the swing states really make the difference in the election, and it looks like Santorum is pulling ahead.

It also looks like Santorum is capturing the independent voters in these swing states:

Among voters not affiliated with either major political party in those states, Romney is slightly ahead 44% to 40%. But Santorum leads the president 56% to 34% among unaffiliated voters in those states.

Some of this can be attributed to Romney’s more-or-less constant campaigning since 2008, so voters are well aware of his multiple stances on various issues. They’re also likely well aware of RomneyCare’s legacy as a template for the intensely disliked ObamaCare. Combined, these factors seem to be making Romney a lot less attractive to independent voters in these important swing states.

Santorum may not be the perfect candidate. I, myself, have many concerns about his big-government solutions to social problems, reminding me strongly of Bush, who gave us No Child Left Behind and a huge expansion of Medicare. However, between Santorum and Romney, I lean towards Santorum. I would have preferred Perry or Cain, but we all know how those campaigns turned out, so Santorum is probably my third choice, and Romney would be fourth.

A quick disclaimer about polls: While Rasmussen has a very good reputation for accuracy, polls aren’t perfect. Polls at this stage of the election of 1980 showed Carter handily beating Reagan, and we all know how that turned out. Take any and all polls with at least a small bit of skepticism.

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About Conservative Wanderer

Conservative Wanderer is currently Editor-in-Chief of That's Freedom You Hear! That means anything that goes wrong can be blamed on him. Previously he was a contributor to the PJ Tatler.
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