COMMENTARY | Military personnel tend to lean conservative in their politics and a new poll showing a large majority of veterans supporting presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney over President Barack Obama seems to support that trend. It is also another demographic poll that indicates the election will be close.
According to Gallup, the split in the general population is 46 percent to 46 percent. Among nonveterans, the president leads 48 percent to 44 percent. But among veterans, Romney leads 58 percent to 34 percent. The margin of error is plus or minus 2 percent.
Gallup noted veterans make up 13 percent of the population and most are older and male. The poll is a reflection of the Republican Party, which tends to be made up of and led by older males. It is one of the demographics the GOP has been grappling with for some time.
Although a spate of headline-making legislation resulted in women polling in favor of President Obama in April, a Washington Post/ABC News poll issued a month later indicated the gender gap closed from 19 points to seven. Unmarried women voted overwhelmingly for Obama in 2008 (70 percent to 29 percent) and the female vote accounted for 53 percent of the electorate. The Democratic Party enjoys greater favorability among Hispanics, Asians and black voters, according to the Pew Research Center.
The poll data seem to indicate the election, barring any major scandal or politically debilitating "October Surprise," will be close. The Electoral College might show a different story once the voting ends. And yet, the race could be close in both voting areas.
According to Real Clear Politics' tracking of polls concerning the election, in the 16 polls released in May, President Obama has led in eight polls. Romney has led in seven. The first poll released in May (Democracy Corps) showed the contenders tied.
- Politics & Government
- President Barack Obama
- Mitt Romney