IBD/TIPP Poll: "The Great Distracter" has failed to distract from his failures as his support among women and independents falls. And it will only get harder to make voters forget the weak economy.
The latest IBD/TIPP survey, which polled 778 registered voters over the eight days ended Wednesday, found that while same-sex marriage is viewed positively by many independents, President Obama's support among that key voting bloc has fallen since his switcheroo on such unions.
On top of that, his support among women has suffered — at a time when Democrats are conducting a coordinated effort accusing likely GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney of waging a "war on women."
The president's attempts to distract voters from the nation's economic woes are apparently failing. The dismal reality of 8%-plus unemployment — four years after the 2008 financial crisis — remains at the front of their minds.
Obama still leads overall in the IBD/TIPP results, 43% to 40%, but that's a drop from the at-least 46% support in our previous polls this year.
Among independents, Romney now leads Obama 39% to 35%, with 17% unsure.
The previous survey, conducted April 27 to May 4, found Romney much further ahead among independents, with 46%. But Obama's support was higher too — 37%. And far fewer independent voters, 8%, were undecided then.
Obama's support among independents was 40% in early April, 42% in mid-March and 41% in early February. His decline is undeniable.
Independents split down the middle — 44% to 44% — on whether same-sex marriage should be valid. But 54% of independents who support same-sex marriage said they'll vote for Obama, while only 22% support Romney.
Since this survey was conducted after Obama's May 9 announcement that "same-sex couples should be able to get married," it may be Obama's change of position that boosted his independent support — yet his overall decline among independents suggests he's lost even more support in that voting bloc in the most recent polls.
The president still leads among women, 45% to 37%, but that's a drop from 49% in late April/early May; earlier this year Obama's support ranged from 50% to 48%.
This decline is backed up by a CBS News/New York Times poll this week showing Obama's popularity among women falling from 49% in April to 44% in May.
The Obama campaign's cheap shots against Ann Romney for choosing children over career may help explain this. But at the end of the day, a simple dynamic is obvious in both these Obama retreats: Divisive social issues can't make Americans forget his economic failure.