8:19AM EST September 29. 2012 - WASHINGTON — Exactly who would be better off over the next four years under a President Obama or a President Romney?
In a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll, Americans express definite perceptions about what groups would thrive under which administration, providing a portrait of how each contender has been defined in the public’s view. That question and others in the survey map the political landscape as the campaign heads into its final five weeks.
It is an electorate that is less engaged, less enthusiastic and less favorably inclined toward the candidates than at this point in recent presidential campaigns. It is also an electorate that confidently predicts the groups that will be winners and losers, depending on who prevails on Nov. 6.
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The rich? By an overwhelming 55 percentage points, those surveyed say upper-income Americans would fare better if Republican challenger Mitt Romney wins.
The poor? By 36 points, they say low-income people would do better under Barack Obama.
Republicans have opened a big enthusiasm gap: 64% say they are more enthusiastic than usual about voting, compared to 48% of Democrats. In general, though, the results show an electorate that is less excited and less engaged than in recent presidential elections.
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