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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Romney’s Business Qualifications a Net Liability in Polls

A new memo by Priorities USA Action, “Mitt Romney’s Central Qualification Becomes a Significant Liability” sheds new light on his failure to connect in a positive way as an advocate for the middle class. In the memo, written by Jefrey Pollock & Nick Gourevitch, Global Strategy Group and Geoff Garin, Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group, the authors explain:

Mitt Romney’s business experience – the centerpiece of his case for the presidency – has proven to be much more of a liability than an asset in key swing states. Clear negative trends have emerged in recent polling conducted in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia by Global Strategy Group and Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group on behalf of Priorities USA Action.

The memo, which summarizes findings of five statewide polls, with over 3,800 total interviews with likely voters between June 25 and July 3, 2012, indicates that “37% of voters say that Romney’s business experience at Bain Capital make them LESS likely to vote for him. Just 27% say it makes them MORE likely to vote for him.” and “58% of swing state voters now say it is true that as a businessman, Romney’s priority was making millions for himself and his investors, regardless of the impact on jobs and the employees.”
Moreover, “In all five of these swing states, more voters have an unfavorable view of Mitt Romney than a favorable one. On average, Romney’s favorable rating across these states is 36% favorable and 43% unfavorable.” He also has 12-point net negative favorable rating with independent voters and a 46 percent unfavorable rating in bellwether Ohio.
In five key swing states, CO, FL, OH, PA and VA, the President leads Mitt Romney in a head-to-head matchup. Obama leads his Republican challenger by a 6 percent margin on the average, 7 percent for Independents. Obama stomps Romney as “the candidate best served to meet the needs of the middle class” by a 19 percent margin in the aforementioned swing states.
In what should be a strong clue for the Obama campaign, the authors note that “Priorities USA’s recent ad campaign on Romney’s record as CEO of Bain Capital had a clear negative impact on perceptions of Romney across a variety of metrics,” and they provide data to verify it.
All in all, it looks like Romney’s bragging about his business experience isn’t helping — especially where voters have been well-alerted to his real record on job-creation and job out-sourcing.

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