Obama the one to beat in Nevada, poll shows

President Barack Obama would win Nevada if the general election were held now, according to a new poll that shows Republican Mitt Romney the closest GOP competitor nipping at his heels.

The survey has Romney edging Obama among swing independents, but the president leads overall thanks to strong backing from Democrats as Romney fights to win over more Republicans.

The poll, commissioned by the Las Vegas Review-Journal and 8NewsNow, pitted the president in head-to-head matchups against Republican challengers.

It confirms that Nevada is a key battleground that could decide the 2012 White House race — and that Romney is the GOP favorite with the strongest chance to contest Obama’s re-election.

Obama had 45.7 percent support compared with 39.8 percent for Romney in the survey, a six-point advantage. The remaining 14.5 percent said they didn’t like either choice or didn’t know whom to pick.

The president crushed U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, 45.4 percent to 35.7 percent, in the poll for a 10-point advantage. And Obama stomped Newt Gingrich by 12 points, 47.3 percent to 35.4 percent.

The rest of the GOP presidential contenders, who have all but ignored Nevada, fell off dramatically when matched against Obama, although his support here remained mostly below 50 percent.

Larry Sabato, director of the Center for Politics in Virginia, said that the results bode well for Obama but that the president can’t count on winning Nevada given its dire economic conditions. The state has the highest jobless rate in the nation at 13 percent and record home foreclosures.

"The incumbent president is below 50 percent. That’s far from secure," said Sabato, who counts Nevada as one of seven battleground states that probably will determine who wins the White House. "Given the economic conditions in Nevada, it’s remarkable he’s ahead at all."

The other battlegrounds are Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio, Colorado, Florida and Virginia, he said.

OBAMA HAS DEMOCRATS’ SUPPORT

Less than a year before the November election, Obama has support from 78.5 percent of Democrats in Nevada, the poll shows. Romney is backed by 73.3 percent of Republicans as he tries to woo conservatives, who are leaning toward Gingrich, the former House speaker.

Among independents, Romney is the only GOP contender beating Obama, according to the survey, which shows Romney with 34 percent support among nonpartisans compared with 32.3 percent for Obama. About one-fifth of the Nevada electorate isn’t aligned with either major political party.

The telephone poll of 600 registered Nevada voters was conducted by the Cannon Survey Center of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The survey, which included land lines and cellphones, was taken Dec. 12 through Tuesday. It had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Obama is by far the leader in general election matchups with the lower-tier GOP candidates:

■ 50.8 percent to 31.1 percent for Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

■ 50.2 percent to 27.1 percent for U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann.

■ 49.3 percent to 30.9 percent for former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.

■ 48.8 percent to 30.1 percent for Jon Huntsman, the former Utah governor.

Some of those candidates may drop out before Nevada’s Feb. 4 GOP presidential caucus if they don’t do well in January, when Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida vote.

Romney is favored to win the GOP caucus in Nevada, where the former Massachusetts governor and company turnaround expert finished first in 2008 ahead of Paul. Both Republicans have campaigned in the Silver State several times and have well-developed staff and volunteer organizations here. Gingrich has a couple of political consultants working in the Silver State but has not opened a Nevada office.

A new survey of registered Republicans in Nevada shows Romney leading the GOP pack here, followed closely by Gingrich, with Paul in third and the other competitors far behind.

Romney has 33.1 percent support, with Gingrich at 29.2 percent and Paul at 12.7 percent, according to the poll, which did not focus on likely GOP caucus-goers. Bachmann has 5 percent followed by Santorum at 3.4 percent, Huntsman at 2.9 percent and Perry at 2.5 percent.

The telephone poll taken by Cannon Survey Center this past week questioned 224 registered Republicans and had a margin of error of plus or minus 6.6 percentage points.

ROMNEY DISMISSES GOP POLL

The Romney campaign dismissed the Republican poll because it didn’t question voters likely to attend the party caucuses, a devoted group of people supporting specific candidates.

As for the general election, a top Romney adviser said the campaign thinks the Republican can close the gap with Obama and win Nevada once voters focus on the economy and a two-man race.

"Governor Romney has spent a lot of time in Nevada and he understands Nevada issues," said Ryan Erwin, the adviser. "Nevada has been hit pretty hard by the government’s policies. Governor Romney is the candidate who’s in the best position to turn around this economy. The closer we get to the election, the more you’re going to find people gravitating toward Mitt Romney."

The Obama campaign said the survey shows Nevadans are rejecting GOP ideology.

"These polling results further underscore what is already apparent: Republicans have no plan to restore middle- class security, and their policies would just make things worse," said spokeswoman Ofelia Casillas, who slammed the tea party "agenda of obstruction." "The Republican plan to cut taxes for millionaires and billionaires, roll back regulations and let Wall Street write their own rules are exactly the same policies that caused the economic crisis and devastated the middle class."

In 2008, Obama won Nevada by 12 points over U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., thanks to a Democratic Party voter registration drive and to Hispanics, a growing political force in the state that overwhelmingly backed him. The final tally was 55.15 percent for Obama and 42.65 percent for McCain.

Nevada Democrats still have a 60,000 voter registration edge over Republicans.

The Obama campaign never turned out the lights on its community organizing machine. It has made more than 495,000 phone calls to Nevadans since Obama announced his re-election bid in April, according to the campaign. And the organization has received more than 46,170 preprinted cards from Nevadans who expressed interest in volunteering by declaring, "I’m in!"

Obama has 3,740 active Nevada volunteers, getting a jump start on the GOP competition.

NEVADA COULD BE ALL-IMPORTANT

Former Gov. Bob List, a GOP national committeeman, said Nevada could still play a decisive role, although the state Republicans gave up their No. 3 spot in the early voting lineup for No. 5.

According to the latest polls, Paul could win the Iowa caucuses, Romney the New Hampshire primary, and Gingrich the South Carolina and Florida primaries. That would make Nevada a must-win state for Romney to hold off Gingrich and Paul.

"If Romney does very poorly in South Carolina and Florida and Gingrich does well, it could put some air under Gingrich’s wings in Nevada," said List, who added Romney remains the man to beat in the state. "I think Nevada takes on a very significant role in that circumstance."

ad-high_impact_4
News
VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System hosts Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ
The 4th Annual Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ is held in celebration of Veterans Day at the VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System Medical Center in North Las Vegas, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018. (Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Wildfires in Southern California
Wildfires hit Ventura County, Calif., on Nov. 9, 2018. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dedication of Nevada's Battle Born memorial
The state of Nevada on Friday dedicated its Battle Born memorial honoring 895 state residents who have died in America’s wars.
Las Vegas police and Sunrise Children's Hospital hope to prevent infant deaths
The Metropolitan Police Department and Sunrise Children's Hospital held a press conference to get the message out on preventable infant deaths attributed to "co-sleeping" and other unsafe sleeping habits. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
No serious injuries after car hits tree in south Las Vegas
One person reported minor injuries but wasn’t hospitalized after a Wednesday morning crash in the south valley.
Nellis Air Force Base keeps airmen fed
Nellis Air Force Bass airmen have delicious and healthy food items, and a variety of dining facilities to choose from. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Las Vegas police determined that a suspicious package found Monday morning at a central valley post office was not a threat.
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Police evacuated the area around the Garside Station post office early Monday morning near Oakey and Decatur boulevards.
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
Las Vegas family shares flu warning
Carlo and Brenda Occhipinti lost their son, Carlo Jr., or “Junior,” to the flu last year.
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Stadust Raceway
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Dan Blocker, who played Hoss Cartwright on the TV show "Bonanza," and the actor's passion for auto racing at Stardust International Raceway in Las Vegas during the 1960s. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal.)
Project Neon 85 percent complete
On Wednesday morning Oct. 31, Interstate 15 northbound lane restrictions were removed opening up Exit 41 to Charleston Blvd. On Thursday Nov. 1, Interstate 15 southbound lane restrictions were removed. The new southbound off-ramp to Sahara Ave. and Highland Dr. also opened Thursday, November 1. With Project Neon 85% finished the flow of traffic on Interstate 15 has substantially diminished. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Girl killed after jumping from bridge onto 215 Beltway in Henderson
Eastbound lanes of the 215 Beltway are shut down by the Nevada Highway Patrol after a female juvenile jumped from the 215 overpass at Stephanie and was struck by a FedEx tractor trailer. Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Vegas88s
Kristallnacht story
An interview with 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Alexander Kuechel who survived seven concentration camps and didn’t leave Germany until after World War II was over. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
1 dead in central Las Vegas crash
An early Wednesday morning crash left at least one person dead and another injured. The crash was reported just around 3 a.m. at the intersection of Flamingo Road and Swenson Street. At least two vehicles were involved in the crash, one of which caught fire. Debris was scattered across the intersection as police combed the area as they investigated the scene. Flamingo is blocked in both directions between Swenson and Cambridge Street. Northbound Swenson is blocked at the intersection.
Richard Knoeppel named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year
Richard Knoeppel, an architecture design instructor at the Advanced technologies Academy, named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year on Monday, Oct. 29, 2018. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Mojave Poppy Bees
(Zach Portman/University of Minnesota Department of Entomology) Male Mojave poppy bees exhibit territorial fighting behavior. The Center for Biological Diversity wants the bee, found only in Clark County, to be added to the endangered species list.
Clark County Schools announce random searches
Clark County School District middle and high school students will be subject to random searches for weapons under a new initiative to combat the wave of guns found on campus. (Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss React to Dennis Hof's Death
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss speak about their friend and prominent brothel owner Dennis Hof's death at Dennis Hof's Love Ranch. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada brothel owner Dennis Hof has died
Nevada brothel owner and Republican candidate for Nevada State Assembly District 36, Dennis Hof has died. He was 72. Nye County Sherriff's office confirmed. Hof owned Love Ranch brothel, located in Crystal, Nevada.
Las Vegas police investigate suspicious package at shopping center
Las Vegas police evacuated a southeast valley shopping center at Flamingo and Sandhill roads early Tuesday morning while they investigated reports of a suspicious package. (Max Michor/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Las Vegas Metro hosts the K-9 Trials
The Las Vegas Metro K-9 Trials returns to the Orleans Arena to benefit the Friends For Las Vegas Police K-9 group.
Kingman residents love their little town
Residents of Kingman, Ariz. talk about how they ended up living in the Route 66 town, and what they love about their quiet community. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Service at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery
Twelve unclaimed veterans are honored at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City in Oct. 9, 2018. (Briana Erickson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas house prices reach highest level in 11 years
Las Vegas house prices are rising But so is the amount of available homes on the market Still, properties priced below $300,000 are selling fast And September was the first time since June 2007 that the median house price reached the $300,000 mark Las Vegas home prices have been rising at one of the fastest rates in the country over the past year Recent data show the market is now less affordable than the national average
National Night Out
About 100 Summerlin residents gathered at Park Centre Dr. in Summerlin on Tuesday for National Night Out. Lt. Joshua Bitsko with Las Vegas Metro, played with 3-year-old David who was dressed as a police officer. Face painting, fire truck tours and more kept kids busy as parents roamed behind them. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Rural homeless issue comes to a head in Pahrump
On Sept. 12, Pahrump sheriff deputies told residents of a homeless encampment on private property that they had 15 minutes to vacate and grab their belongings. That decision might face some legal consequences. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Remembrance blood drive on October 1
A blood drive was held at the Las Vegas Convention Center on the one year anniversary of the Oct. 1 shooting. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Remembrance Lights memorial unveiled at St. Rose hospital
A dedication ceremony was held at St. Rose to unveil a memorial and to read the names of those who died on October 1, a year ago. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like