Obama vs Romney

Obama vs Romney

The US presidential election will be a face-off between Democrat incumbent Barack Obama and the Republican challenger Mitt Romney. With Rick Santorum exiting the race for the Republican nomination, Romney has emerged the Grand Old Party’s presumptive nominee. He has already accumulated enough delegate support to seal the Republican nomination. Romney’s immense wealth and funding are said to have played an important role in keeping him afloat. In the next couple of weeks he will need to focus on getting the Republicans to close ranks behind him. Romney has many doubters in his party. Christian conservatives in the GOP are suspicious of his Mormon faith, while social conservatives doubt his ‘ideological purity,’ Pessimism about his ability to win the election is pervasive in his party. Opinion polls indicate that just a third of Republicans will ‘enthusiastically back’ him in the November election. If that is the mood among his party faithfuls, it spells bad news for Romney’s presidential bid.

However, opinion polls indicate that Obama and Romney command roughly equal support nation-wide.  Obama’s ‘middle-class, regular guy’ image has made him vastly more likeable than Romney in the eyes of Americans. But likeability alone does not determine the outcome of presidential elections. Ultimately, it will be on the economy that Americans will vote and here Romney holds the advantage at present. Voters say they are more enthused by the idea of Romney, a highly successful businessman, steering the economy.  Worryingly for Obama, support from Blacks, middle and working class people and women, who formed the core of his support in the 2005 elections, is now hemorrhaging. 

A personal and bruising election campaign is on the cards. There are early signs of this being a no-holds barred contest, with both sides willing to sink to any level to malign the opponent. Obama’s team has gone to town on Romney’s uncaring ways by pulling out a story of his family transporting their dog by putting him in a crate strapped to the roof of their car. Not to be outdone, Romney’s team has sunk its teeth into Obama’s account in his autobiography of eating dog meat during his days as a young boy in Indonesia. Instead of allowing slander and silly issues to dominate the debate, the presidential hopefuls must keep their focus on the real issues – growing unemployment and wars abroad.

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