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September 03, 2012

Gallup: GOP convention had "minimal impact" on voter attitudes

No discernable convention bounce for the Republicans.

That's the analysis from Gallup."Last week's Republican National Convention had a minimal impact on Americans' self-reported voting intentions, with just about as many saying the convention made them less likely to vote for Mitt Romney as say it made them more likely to vote for him," the pollster reported Monday.

Gallup tracks sentiment towards Republican nominee Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama daily. The Republican convention met last Monday through Thursday, with Romney delivering his acceptance speech Thursday night.

Gallup found its polling "showed predictable partisan differences. Republicans overwhelmingly said the convention made them more likely to vote for Romney, although most would likely be voting for their nominee anyway.

"Democrats as predictably said the convention made them less likely to vote for Romney. Independents, a key group in any presidential election, were essentially split, with 36 percent saying the convention made them more likely to vote for Romney and 33 percent less likely -- although 30 percent said they don't know or that the convention made no difference."

Romney and Obama remain in a virtual tie in Gallup's latest polling, with Obama ahead by 1 percentage point. Democrats begin their convention Tuesday.

The poll also found Romney's acceptance speech did not win over many Democrats or independents.

Gallup reported it "scored low by comparison to previous convention speeches going back to 1996. Thirty-eight percent of Americans rated the speech as excellent or good, while 16 percent rated it as poor or terrible. The 38 percent who rated the speech as excellent or good is the lowest rating of any of the eight speeches Gallup has tested since Bob Dole's GOP acceptance speech in 1996."

Of the eight speeches Gallup has polled, Obama's 2008 speech was the best received.

But Gallup warned views of conventions and speeches "do not necessarily presage victory in November. Obama's speech was more highly evaluated in 2008 than (Republican nominee John) McCain's, and Obama went on to win. Kerry's and Bush's 2004 speeches were equally highly evaluated, but Bush won the election." Democrat John Kerry opposed President George W. Bush


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"Planet Washington" covers politics and government. It is written by journalists in McClatchy's Washington Bureau.

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