PPP's pre-Democratic convention North Carolina poll finds the Presidential race in the state all tied up: Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are each at 48%.
Just as we found in Florida, the Republican convention doesn't seem to be giving Romney much of a bounce. 34% of voters say that the convention made them more likely to support the GOP this year, 33% said it made them less likely to do so, and 33% said it didn't make a difference to them either way. Romney's lack of a convention bounce could simply be a product of his not being that good of a public speaker. 56% of North Carolina voters say Obama gives better speeches compared to 35% for Romney.
Although the Presidential race remains a toss up, Mitt Romney has seen some improvement in his image with North Carolinians over the last month. 47% rate him favorably now to 48% with an unfavorable opinion. That's up a net 7 points from our last poll when he was at a -8 spread with 42% of voters rating him positively and 50% negatively. Obama's approval rating has barely changed since early August in the state- 48% of voters think he's doing a good job to 50% who disapprove of him. Romney and Obama are both slightly under water in their favorability/approval numbers.
Obama's areas of strength are pretty predictable. He's up 51-44 with women, 83-15 with non-white voters, and 50-45 with folks under 65. Romney is up 52-44 with men, 60-35 with white voters, and 58-39 with seniors. That wide generational gap is particularly telling- North Carolina might be a swing state for a long time moving forward. Romney's overcoming the Democratic registration advantage in the state thanks to a 51-40 advantage with independents.
Everyone who spoke in the primetime hour at the convention last week has positive favorability numbers in North Carolina except Mitt Romney. Beyond those already mentioned Marco Rubio comes in at a +17 spread (42/25), Susana Martinez at +16 (32/16), Chris Christie at +8 (41/33), and Paul Ryan at +4 (46/42).
Other notes from North Carolina:
-51% of voters think Romney should release 12 years of his tax returns, to 40% who think he should not.
-47% of voters oppose the Ryan Plan to 41% in support of it. Again though, given the huge advantage for the Romney/Ryan ticket with seniors I'm not sure that's having much of an impact on the overall numbers.
Full results here