For former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney this was the time when he was supposed to be locking the GOP nomination down, not fighting with former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum for the delegates from the state Romney grew up in.
Romney’s unfavorability nationwide has risen, and it’s showing in a potential matchup against President Obama. As you can see from the chart below, Romney has seen independent voters nationally move from his camp to Obama’s as the primary race continues and the economy ticks up.
It’s not surprising then that this voting bloc has had a role in fueling some separation in the national race between President Obama and the former governor, which see-sawed back and forth during 2011 as Obama was stung by the debt ceiling fight and the GOP race was starting up. While things will certainly tighten over the next ten months, the last four weeks of polling have exposed a truth about Romney’s chances in 2012: He’ll definitely have to make the sale.
Kyle is the Editor of TPM Media’s PollTracker. He graduated from Beloit College (WI) and began working in politics before getting an M.A. in magazine journalism from New York University, where he interned at TPM and the website of The New Yorker.