Apr 182012
Unemployment line

Barack Obama’s lead over Mitt Romney has narrowed from 12 points last month to a 49% to 45% advantage, with voters rating the economy and jobs as the issues that are “very important” to their vote. Some hot-button social issues, like gay marriage and birth control, rank at the bottom of the list of voter concerns.

The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted April 4-15, 2012 finds that those who say the economy and jobs will be very important to their vote divide their support almost evenly between Obama and Romney. But the candidates each have advantages on other top-tier issues. Health care and education voters favor Obama by double-digits. Those who rank the federal budget deficit as a top priority favor Romney by a 19-point margin. Romney is also the preferred candidate among those who rank Iran as very important, while Obama leads among those who cite the environment.

Obama continues to owe his lead to support from women, college graduates, blacks, Latinos and lower income voters — all of whom support him over Romney by double-digits.

Read the full report which includes findings on these subjects:

  • Republican attitudes towards Romney as the GOP contest ends
  • Views of the 2012 primaries
  • Swing voters
  • 2012 campaign dynamics
  • Dueling partisan agendas
  • Shifting voter concerns
  • Gender gap in issue importance

See also: Pew Research Center President Andrew Kohut’s article in the New York Times on the challenges that both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney face in the 2012 election.