American Pulse™ Special Report: Profile of 2012 Likely Voters Highlights Political Views, Candidate Preference and How an Uncertain Election is Impacting Spending

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3,281 respondents participated in the August 1 American Pulse conducted 8/6-8/13/2012 utilizing BIGinsight™ and reInvention survey panels. The latest analysis looks at key likely voter groups including by gender and generations. It highlights different segments’ political ideology, their presidential candidate preference, issues that affect their vote and how uncertainty regarding the election is impacting their spending and life decisions.

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Romney Leads among Likely Voters, Men, Boomers and the Silent Generation; Obama is Ahead with Women, Gen X and Gen Y.

According to the most recent American Pulse™ Analysis (August-12, N=3,281), Mitt Romney (45.1%) maintains a lead over Barack Obama (41.9%) with Likely Voters. The challenger also has a healthy lead among Men and older voters while the incumbent has a narrow advantage among Women, but widens the gap with younger voters.

“If the Presidential election were held today, who would you vote for?”
Barack Obama -- 41.9%
Mitt Romney -- 45.1%

Barack Obama -- 39.8%    
Mitt Romney -- 49.1%                 

Barack Obama -- 43.9%
Mitt Romney -- 41.4%        

Walmart Moms**
Barack Obama -- 40.6%
Mitt Romney -- 40.8%

Gen Y                    
Barack Obama -- 58.1%                        
Mitt Romney -- 25.9%                        

Gen X
Barack Obama -- 43.9%
Mitt Romney -- 40.7%

Barack Obama -- 36.4%
Mitt Romney -- 52.2%

Silent Generation
Barack Obama -- 33.5%
Mitt Romney -- 57.1%

Source: American Pulse™, August 2012
*Likely voters are defined as those who are somewhat/very likely to vote in the 2012 Presidential Election
**Walmart Moms are defined as Women with children in the household under 18 who have shopped at Walmart in the last 90 days

Overall, likely voters tend to consider themselves more middle-of-the-road to conservative when it comes to fiscal and social policies. People who say they voted for Obama in 2008 report being more liberal on policies than 2012 Likely Voters, which could be a factor in Romney’s lead. Additionally, Likely Voters say they would rather cut social programs (55.5%) than pay more in taxes (44.5%) but pay more in taxes (58.9%) rather than cut public services (41.4%).

Likely Voters are inclined to have little-to-no confidence that current government policies will get the economy back on track (70.9%) or lower unemployment (72%). The top issues impacting their vote at the polls this November will be the Economy (71.1%), Healthcare (61%) and Taxes (51.4%). Further, 61.7% say that the uncertainty of the election is impacting their spending and 40.8% say it has affected a life decision.

Click here for the special complimentary report including Likely Voters, Likely Voters by Gender and Likely Voters by Generation.

Other Key Findings – Likely Voters by Gender

  •     Women tend to consider themselves more liberal than Men on government policy, especially social services. Walmart Moms place themselves more in the center on policy than both Men and Women.
  •     Similar levels of confidence in current government policies: 70.4% of Men have little-to-no confidence they will get the economy back on track. 71.4% of Women agree. Walmart Moms are more pessimistic: 72.3% don’t have confidence that policies will get the economy on track; 73.3% say the same about lowering unemployment.
  •     Top issue impacting both sexes at the polls is the Economy. Interestingly, Social Security is more likely to influence Women’s vote (41.9%) than Men’s (33.4%).
  •     Walmart Moms also say that the Economy (71.5%) is the top issue for them when heading to the polls. They rank Past Accomplishments (62.7%) as the highest presidential characteristic impacting their vote. With nearly 20% still undecided, many will likely consider Obama’s record regarding the economy as they cast a ballot this November.

Other Key Findings – Likely Voters by Generation

  •     Members of the Silent Generation would rather live in a society where everyone supports themselves (79.9%) than not (20.1%). Gen Y would rather live in a society where everyone works to support the whole society (53.7%) than not (46.3%).
  •     Uncertainty of election is most likely to have impacted a life decision for Gen Y (52.1%) followed by Gen X (42.7%), Boomers (38.4%) and the Silent Generation (29.1%). However, 17.6% of Boomers say they are delaying retirement because of this unknown outcome.
  •     One thing they can all agree upon – the economy is the #1 issue impacting votes.

American Pulse™
The American Pulse™ provides a timely view of how people feel about topics such as politics, pop culture and the economy through the American Pulse InsightCenter™. This center provides advanced cloud-based technology-driven answers, which are delivered via multiple devices (PC/Tablet/Smartphone), regarding the current state of the union through the eyes of Americans. 3,281 respondents participated in the August 1 American Pulse conducted 8/6-8/13/2012. Margin of error is +/- 1.7% at the 95% confidence level.

reInvention LLC
reInvention LLC provides global sampling and data collection services. Driven by a passion for making it incredibly easy to survey audiences anywhere in the world, reInvention delivers high-quality responses and superior results. OneOpinion, reInvention’s respondent panel, is a next generation survey taking platform that encourages survey participation through sophisticated technology, honest communications, and respectful compensation. reInvention was founded by Hugh Davis and Keith Price and is headquartered in Westport, CT.


Chrissy Wissinger, Senior Manager, Communications
Dianne Kremer, Senior Analyst

reInvention LLC
Jim Nikolis

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Chrissy Wissinger
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