GOP enthusiasm lifts Romney in battleground poll

With two weeks until election day, the country has warmed to the prospects of a Mitt Romney presidency.

Mitt Romney is gaining momentum with two weeks left until election day, outpolling Barack Obama 49 to 47 percent among likely voters in the latest POLITICO-George Washington University Battleground Tracking Poll. Photo used under Creative Commons license

A POLITICO-George Washington University Battleground Tracking Poll found Monday that Romney held an edge over Barack Obama for the first time since May – outpolling the president 49 percent to 47 percent among 1,000 likely voters nationwide.

Pollsters found the difference in the enthusiasm gap. Eighty-one percent of Republican voters said they were extremely likely to vote, compared to just 73 percent of Democrats.

“Romney has improved in national polls because of greater enthusiasm among Republicans and his large lead in the South,” Celinda Lake, Democratic pollster and president of Lake Research Partners, said in a release.

Likely voters in the bipartisan poll also gave Romney higher marks on most economic issues, like the federal budget, spending, the economy and jobs. Obama earned higher approval on issues like foreign policy, Medicare and standing up for the middle class.

About half the interviews with likely voters were held after the last presidential debate, showing a “slowing trend toward Romney,” said Chris Arterton, a professor of political management and lead professor the battleground poll.

“All indications are that we are headed into another very, very close election in a divided country,” Arterton said in the release.

The POLITICO-George Washington University Battleground Tracking Poll, housed in the GW Global Media Institute, will release its latest findings each of the next two Mondays before election day Nov. 6.

Obama and Romney will square off on foreign policy in the final presidential debate Monday night in Boca Raton, Fla.

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