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CBS NEWS/NEW YORK TIMES POLL For release: Friday, September 14, 2012 7:00 am ET The State of the

Race: 53 Days to Go September 8-12, 2012 With the parties conventions over and Election Day just weeks away, President Barack Obama has a three-point edge over Republican Mitt Romney among likely voters nationwide. This is the first national poll in which CBS News and the New York Times have measured the presidential race among likely voters. The measure for likely voters takes into account voters reported intent to vote, voting history and other factors that historically affect an individuals decision to vote. Likely Voters: 2012 Vote for President (Among likely voters) Barack Obama 49% Mitt Romney 46 Undecided 4 President Obama has a wider lead over Romney among the broader group of registered voters nationwide. 51% say theyll vote for Mr. Obama (the first time he is above the 50% mark), while 43% choose Romney. Heading into the parties conventions, the President and Romney were neck and neck among registered voters. Registered Voters: 2012 Vote for President (Among registered voters) Now Before Conventions (8/2012) Barack Obama 51% 46% Mitt Romney 43 45 Undecided 4 6 One of the goals of conventions is for political parties to rally their base of support, and it appears the Democrats have made progress on this front. 43% of Democrats now say they are more enthusiastic about voting compared to past elections; up from just 27% in July. Republicans remain more enthusiastic than Democrats about voting but their enthusiasm level hasnt increased much from two months ago. Enthusiasm Compared to Past Elections (Among registered voters) Republicans Democrats All Now 7/2012 Now 7/2012 43% 52% 49% 43% 27% 19 15 20 17 24 37 33 30 40 48

More enthusiastic Less enthusiastic Same

Independents Now 7/2012 37% 29% 25 28 37 42

There is some room for movement in the presidential race but not very much. More than eight in 10 voters who back a candidate say their minds are made up, while just over one in 10 say its too early and their minds could still change. Similar percentages of Obama and Romney voters could change their minds.

Yes Too early

Mind Made Up Whom to Support? (Among likely voters with a candidate choice) Total Obama Voters Romney Voters 86% 86% 87% 13 14 13

Referendum on the President? One question that is often asked when an incumbent president is running for re-election is whether the country and voters are better off than they were before he took office. Nearly half of voters say their families are about the same but the rest are divided, with 25% better off and 28% worse off. When it comes to the country overall, just a quarter say it is about the same as four years ago. 36% say things in the U.S. are better, and 39% say things are worse. Better or Worse Off Compared to 4 Years Ago? (Among registered voters) Country Your family Better 36% 25% Worse 39 28 Same 24 46 Results are highly partisan: 77% of Republicans say the country is worse off, while 66% of Democrats say the country is better off. Whos Supporting Who? Each candidate is getting the support of nine in 10 of their party stalwarts, while independents are breaking for Romney. Romney beats Mr. Obama among likely voters age 65 and over, but the President leads among younger voters and enjoys his largest lead among voters under age 30. The gender gap continues. The president leads among women by double digits, but Romney holds a lead among men. Who Would You Vote for if the Candidates Were? (Among likely voters) Obama Romney Total 49% 46% Men Women Republicans Democrats Independents 18-29 30-44 45-64 44% 53% 7% 92 40 53% 50% 52% 52 41 90 5 51 45 45 45

65+

38%

53

The race is close among white college graduates but Romney leads among white voters without a college degree. The President does better with voters with lower household incomes, while Romney leads among wealthier voters. Who Would You Vote for if the Candidates Were? (Among likely voters) Obama Romney White College grad 47% 50 White No degree 37% 57 <$50k 58% 37 $50k-$100K 47% 50 $100K+ 41% 57 ______________________________________________________________________
This poll was conducted by telephone from September 8-12, 2012 among 1,301 adults nationwide, including 1,170 registered voters. The sample size for likely voters is 1,162. Not all likely voters are assigned the same probability of voting. Phone numbers were dialed from samples of both standard landline and cell phones. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample, the sample of registered voters, and the sample of likely voters could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups may be higher. Percentages may not add to 100% due to rounding. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.