September 21, 2012

Swing Vote Smaller Than Usual, But One-in-Five Still Not Certain

22%

Only 22% of registered voters could be classified as true swing voters as of mid-September, less than in previous presidential years

Compared with many previous elections at this point in the campaign, more voters this year say they are absolutely certain to vote for their chosen candidate. Only 22% of registered voters (and 18% of likely voters) can be classified as swing voters (undecided, only leaning toward a candidate, or say there is a chance they might change their mind).

Four years ago, 27% of voters were still open to persuasion at this point in the campaign. Between 1992 and 2000, about three-in-ten voters in September were not yet certain about their choice.

In a survey conducted Sept. 12-16, 43% of all registered voters say they are certain to vote for Barack Obama, while 35% say they are certain to vote for Mitt Romney. Among less certain Obama voters, 3% only lean to him and 5% say they might change their mind. Among less certain Romney voters, 3% only lean to the Republican, while 3% say there is a chance they might vote for Obama. Just 7% of voters decline to indicate any preference between the candidates. Read More