But the finding that Romney’s favorability ratings have declined reinforces other recent polls that, taken together, indicate the Obama campaign’s attacks on Romney’s business record and personal taxes have had an impact. According to the survey, 52% of registered voters had a negative view of Romney, with 37% viewing him positively -- the lowest ratings for any major-party presidential nominee going back to 1988.
The survey showed the race to be somewhat tighter in 12 potential battleground states, with Obama holding a 48%-44% edge. Some other polls have shown the reverse -- Obama doing better in battleground states than nationwide. The polls are not comparable because each includes different states. Pew’s battleground list included eight that most analysts consider swing states -- Nevada, Colorado, Iowa, Ohio, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida -- as well as Missouri, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
The small number of undecided voters -- 7% in the survey -- agree with both sides in that regard, disdaining both men. By 57%-18%, the undecided have a negative view of Romney, the poll found, while only about a third of the undecided have a positive view of Obama.
The Pew survey was conducted July 16-26, among 2,508 adults, including 1,956 registered voters. The survey has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percentage points.