A new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds that in the last month Romney has closed his so-called gender gap from 19 to 7 percent. Last month Obama led among women 57 to 38 percent. Now that lead is down to 51 to 44 percent.
The new poll found voters would be split 49 percent for Obama and 46 percent for Romney if the November election were held now, but with regard to whom they prefer on handling the economy, Romney and Obama are tied at 47 percent. That is a 4 percent gain for Romney from last month's Post poll.
Romney's improvement comes despite the skewed sample. The ABC News/Washington Post poll used a sample of 32 percent Democrats, 22 percent Republicans, and 38 percent Independents. Based upon exit polling, the 2008 electorate was 39 percent Democrat, 32 percent Republican, and 29 percent Independent. In 2010, it was 35 percent Democrat, 35 percent Republican, and 29 percent Independent.
The poll also found that 52 percent of all Americans identify the economy as the one concern that will decide their presidential vote. No other issue received more than single digits. Like Romney says the presidential campaign is "still about the economy…and we’re not stupid."
There were two other interesting findings from the new poll:
- Only 16 percent say they are better off compared with when Obama took office. That invites a comparison to President Carter's failed presidency using Ronald Reagan's devastating question, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?"
- The poll also shows that Obama's attacks against Romney based on Bain Capital have yet to hurt Romney. This finding is consistent with a recent Rasmussen poll finding that 44 percent of likely voters believe that Romney’s business record is a reason to vote for him. It also supports the premise that the Obama attacks on Bain have backfired.
Neither of those findings are good news for Obama.