Millions of Americans will choose to do anything but vote in the November Presidential election, but according to a new poll that tapped into the minds of those unregistered or unlikely to hit the voting booth, if they were to weigh in, they would reelect President Barack Obama.
According to experts from the Suffolk University Political Research Center, it is estimated that the non-voter total will be even higher this November than on the 2008 ticket, because Americans feel “beaten down by empty promises, a bad economy and the negativity of both parties.”
However, a recent poll of 800 unregistered, and non-participatory voters showed while they think the country is headed in the wrong direction, they would like to see Obama for a second term.
“This poll is a good-news bad news story for Barack Obama,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center. “The good news is that there is a treasure chest of voters he doesn’t even have to persuade – they already like him and dislike Mitt Romney. He just needs to unlock the chest and get them out to vote. The bad news is that these people won’t vote.”
The poll, which was conducted in conjunction with USA TODAY, showed while those who participated may favor President Obama over Republican contender Mitt Romney, a majority felt the U.S. “was on the wrong track,” and don’t feel like what they say matters.
When asked what they think of when they hear the words “Barack Obama,” the top answer was “Good president,” trailed by answers that included “Disappointed/Not doing a good job,” “Liar/Empty promises,” and “should not be President/bad leader,” according to the results. But Obama was still viewed favorably by those asked.
Besides their view on the president, the poll asked men and women, between the ages of ages of 18 and 65, what their opinions are on national issues and why they aren’t participating in their country’s civic process in the 2012 election. The poll was conducted from July 30 through August 8.
Instead of getting the opinion of voters, something polls typically focus on, this survey specifically sought out those who were unregistered and showed no interest in voting this election season.
“Every other poll being conducted is talking to the usual cadre of registered and likely voters. This exclusive poll is the first of its kind—a study of everyone else,” researchers said in a statement.
Although there was a general disdain for participating in the Presidential election, results of the questionnaire showed that people felt a bad economy and high unemployment rates were the biggest problems hanging over the heads of citizens.
Eight percent felt the most important problem facing the country today is “political gridlock,” and others said taxes, lack of money and educational issues need to be dealt with.
While respondents said politics make a difference in their lives, 63 percent of unregistered voters said they wouldn’t participate because they are “too busy,” and had “no time.”
Another 30 percent said they feel as though their vote doesn’t matter anyways. In a separate question, 66 percent of those who are registered, but won’t vote, said they didn’t like either candidate.
But according to the results, given the chance to close a clinched election this year, 85 percent of those who favor Obama said they would register or vote for him, while 70 percent of those who prefer Romney would do the same.
“Ironically, both the Obama and Romney campaigns want to tout likely-voter polls showing their respective candidates leading by wide margins,” said Paleologos in a statement. “But for these non-voters, this assertion has the opposite effect from what the campaigns want. If these people think you’re going to win anyway, that’s one more reason in a long list of reasons why they’ll stay home in November.”
Stats from the poll:
- 43 percent of unregistered Americans would vote for Obama.
- 43 percent of registered voters who said they are less likely to cast a ballot would also vote for Obama.
- 52 percent saw the country as being on the wrong track.
- 55 percent of those polled viewed Obama favorably.
- 25 percent viewed Romney favorably.
- 19 percent said “nothing” could get them to the polls in November.