Obama +5 in Michigan — Marketing Resource Group

Michigan has been pretty sleepy on the campaign trail but Romney remains within striking distance:

President Barack Obama is slightly leading challenger Mitt Romney in the latest poll of likely Michigan voters. The Marketing Resource Group poll of 600 likely voters, conducted Sept. 10 through Friday and given to MLive Media Group, showed the Democratic incumbent and Vice President Joe Biden with 47.5 percent and his Republican rival and running mate Paul Ryan with 42.3 percent. The margin of sampling error was plus or minus 4 percentage points, meaning Obama had a slight edge. Eight percent were undecided. Obama was up about 6 percentage points the last time the Lansing-based firm polled in March. Paul King, MRG’s director of survey research, said a big concern for Romney is Oakland County, the suburban Detroit swing county where Obama was leading 54 percent to 38 percent. “They seem to be falling in the president’s direction, which is not good news for the Romney campaign,” he said. “If Oakland County goes big for one candidate or another, typically the state of Michigan does the same.”

  • Better off? Respondents were split on whether they are better or worse off than four years ago – a question Romney has been pushing on the campaign trail. Thirty-seven percent said they were better off, 40 percent worse off and 20 percent volunteered that they were doing the same.
  • Economy is king: Asked to name the issue they were most concerned about – they were prompted for two responses – 76 percent said unemployment/layoffs/jobs security and the economy. The only other problem to hit double digits was education funding, at 11 percent.
  • Auto bailout: The federal government’s rescue of the auto industry continued to enjoy significant support in this auto-heavy state. Sixty-one percent said they supported it, and 32 percent opposed it. Obama made the bailout a major theme of the Democratic National Convention since Romney opposed emergency loans for General Motors and Chrysler.
  • Obamacare: The federal health care law evenly split the potential electorate, with 45 percent in favor and 47 percent against. Romney has said he would repeal most of the Affordable Care Act and replace it with something else, while keeping some of the more popular provisions such as letting young adults be covered under their parents’ health insurance.
  • Gender: Though Obama and Romney were about even among male voters (Obama had a 3-percentage point edge), the president enjoyed a 7-point lead with female voters. “We’ve seen a larger difference in past elections,” King said. Romney needs to win over more men to offset women favoring Obama. Women 55 and older have helped Romney narrow the gender gap a bit despite younger women – particularly age 18-34 – backing Obama in droves, King said. [NOTE: in 2008 Obama won men by 7% and women by 22% so Romney is clearly making headway]
For President Percent
Barack Obama 47.5
Mitt Romney 42.3
Gary Johnson 3
Undecided 6

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