Who Do You Trust? On Key Issues it’s Romney.

Fox News recently released a survey conducted by Anderson Robbins Research (D) and Shaw & Company Research (R) that asks voters which candidates they trust to do a better job on a number of issues. The most interesting are:

  • Bringing the Country together
    • Obama 43%
    • Romney 38%
  • Standing up to special interests
    • Obama 43%
    • Romney 38%
  • Handling health care
    • Obama 43%
    • Romney 40%
  • Restoring trust in government
    • Obama 39%
    • Romney 39%
  • Handling taxes
    • Obama 40%
    • Romney 44%
  • Improving the economy
    • Obama 39%
    • Romney 46%
  • Encouraging job creation
    • Obama 39%
    • Romney 46%
  • Cutting government spending
    • Obama 31%
    • Romney 51%

These results are interesting for three reasons:

  • Obama has lost the 2008 magic:
    • In 2008 pre-election polling Obama bested McCain on “The economy” (53%-37%), “Healthcare” (59%-30%), “Taxes” (52%-41%) and “Standing up to the special interests” (47%-39). On all four of those issues Obama has lost significant ground and trails Romney on the economy and on taxes.
    • The larger theme of the 2008 campaign was that Obama was the candidate who would do more to bring needed change to Washington. In 2008 he bested McCain 61%-29% on that issue. While the Fox News survey didn’t explicitly ask this question, Obama’s marks on “Bringing the country together,” “Standing up to the special interests” and “Restoring trust in government” all indicate that Obama’s time in office has tarnished his image as a different typ of candidate.
  • Romney is rated higher on the issues that voters care most about:
    • According to a CNN/ORC Poll, the top three issues facing the country are:
      • The economy             52%
      • The federal budget deficit    18%
      • Health care            14%
    • The economy is far and away the most important issue of this election. On both job creation and cutting government spending Romney leads Obama.
  • Romney still has room to grow:
    • According to the Fox News data, 11% can’t say whether they have a favorable or unfavorable impression of Mitt Romney. This compares to 4% who say the same about Barack Obama. As Romney begins his general election campaign, he will have an opportunity to introduce himself to voters. As that happens, look for Romney to solidify his advantage on key issues to the voters. Of course, the Obama campaign will do everything in their power to try and tear Romney down. But based on this data, their efforts to date have not been all that effective.

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