GOP More Excited About Voting This Year

August 01, 2012, 2:00 PM GMT+0

(Week of 7/28/2012) Voters who are supporting Republican Mitt Romney in the presidential election this fall are more enthusiastic about voting than those favoring President Obama. But for many GOP voters in the latest Economist/YouGov Poll, the source of their enthusiasm lies in antipathy toward Obama more than in genuine support for Romney.

More than half of Romney voters say they are extremely enthusiastic about voting this fall, 17 points higher than Obama voters. Obama supporters are more likely to describe themselves as "very" or only "somewhat" enthusiastic about their ballot.

GOP voters are also more attentive: 54% of Romney voters say they are following the campaign very closely, something just 36% of Obama voters say.

But attentiveness and enthusiasm for casting a ballot among those Romney supporters may not translate into enthusiasm for their candidate. Nearly two in three Romney voters say they are mostly voting against the President, not voting for Romney. 84% of Obama voters say they are voting for the President.

The difference may stem from the fact that the President is generally more liked than Romney — as a person. Among registered voters, just 16% say they like the former Massachusetts Governor "a lot." More than twice as many registered voters (34%) like the President "a lot."

However, the contest for the Presidency remains close. In this week’s Economist/YouGov Poll, the GOP candidate receives 46% of the vote from registered voters, while 44% support the President.

87% of Democrats support the President; 88% of Republicans favor Romney. Independents give Romney a 16-point lead. There is a sizable gender gap: men support Romney 50% to 40%; women favor Obama 49% to 41%.

Americans still see the President as the most likely victor this fall. 43% of registered voters think Barack Obama will win a second term; 26% think Mitt Romney is likely to be the winner. While Obama voters may not be as enthusiastic as Romney supporters about casting a ballot, they are more hopeful about the final outcome. 75% of them expect their choice to win. Just 54% of Romney voters say their candidate will be victorious.

Economist/YouGov poll archives can be found here

Photo source: Press Association