President Barack Obama “is making strong inroads” with independent voters in 12 swing states that will likely decide his re-election, according to a new “PurplePoll” from the bipartisan firm Purple Strategies.
Among independents, last month Obama trailed former Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.) by 2 points and led former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney by 3 points. In the poll released Wednesday, Obama led Romney by 8 points and Santorum by 11 points among the voting bloc. Overall, Obama led Romney by 4 points and Santorum by 8 points.
The autodial poll of 1,424 likely voters was taken March 16-19 and had a 2.6-point margin of error. It was conducted by the firm’s research division.
The 12 states polled were Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin, all of which Obama won in 2008.
The poll showed other factors, including the direction of the country and Obama’s job approval, also moving in the right direction for the president. His 46 percent approval rating, while still underwater, is a 5-point improvement from December. The 36 percent of those polled who believe the country is moving in the right direction is still well below the comfort zone for an incumbent president, but it’s 14 points higher than it was in December.