Three-quarters of registered voters say the fact that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is worth more than $200 million makes no difference to their likelihood of voting for him. However, 20 percent of voters, mostly Democrats and independents, say Romney’s wealth makes them less likely to vote for him, while 4 percent say it makes them more likely.
Toss out the Democrats; they were never really in the Romney pile (other than maybe the disaffected working-class whites who still strongly identify as Democrats in West Virginia, Kentucky, and western Pennsylvania). And keep in mind, 62 percent of Democrats say the wealth is a non-factor in their decision.
Among independents, though, it might be a small factor: “Their views on Romney’s wealth mirror the national average, with 19% saying Romney’s wealth makes them less likely to vote for him and 4% saying more likely.”
According to Gallup’s other findings, only 70 percent of independents are “definitely” going to vote, compared to 80 percent of Democrats and 86 percent of Republicans.
The latest Gallup survey puts independents at 33 percent of the electorate. Presuming that every independent turns out (obviously unlikely), and one in five independents say Romney’s wealth is a negative, that means Romney’s wealth endangers his standing with . . . 6.5 percent of the electorate — at most. Presuming that only seven out of ten of those independents show up, independents will make up about 23 percent of the electorate on Election Day (probably too low an estimate), and that means his wealth is an issue for 4.3 percent.
So, among the universe of voters who could conceivably vote for Romney, his wealth is an issue for 4.3 percent to 6.5 percent.