Washington, Feb 7 (IANS/EFE) President Barack Obama is preferred by 52 percent of Americans compared with 43 percent who favour Mitt Romney, the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, a Washington Post-ABC News poll published Monday revealed.
The telephone survey, carried out Feb 1-4 among 1,000 adults nationwide, has a margin of error of plus/minus four percentage points.
Obama’s advantage declines slightly among registered voters to 51 percent versus 45 percent for the former Massachusetts governor, who is still facing three challengers to lead the Republican Party into the November election.
The Post noted that this is the first time in the surveys conducted since July that Obama has garnered more than 50 percent support when compared with Romney, and it is the first time that he has exceeded that threshold among registered voters.
“Boosted by improved public confidence in his economic stewardship, President Obama for the first time holds a clear edge over Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney,” the Post wrote.
Last Saturday, Romney easily won the Nevada caucuses and after his earlier victories in the Florida and New Hampshire primaries he has consolidated his position at the head of the pack of politicos who are vying for the Republican candidacy.
The results of the survey published Monday “underscore how important framing the contest could be to the outcome”, the Post noted.
“If the fall campaign becomes largely a referendum on Obama’s tenure in office, as Republicans hope it will, he could struggle to win a second term – barring an economic recovery that vastly outperforms expectations,” the article said.
“If, however, it becomes a choice between the incumbent and the challenger, as Obama advisers predict it will, the president’s prospects would be brighter,” the paper stated.