Final election polls paint a bleak picture for Mitt Romney — the modest leads he once held in nationwide presidential polls have dissipated as President Barack Obama has seized strong control of both the national vote and electoral map.
Obama made gains in many of the final election polls, including the Gallup poll. Mitt Romney once saw his largest lead of the election from this poll — a seven-point advantage just weeks before the election — but Obama closed the gap and in the final Gallup poll sat just one point behind, within the poll’s margin of error.
With the recent gains being shown in the final presidential polls, FiveThirtEight’s Nate Silver sees little chance of victory for Mitt Romney:
“Mitt Romney has always had difficulty drawing a winning Electoral College hand. Even during his best period of polling, in the week or two after the first presidential debate in Denver, he never quite pulled ahead in the polling averages in Ohio and other states that would allow him to secure 270 electoral votes.
“But the most recent set of polls suggest another problem for Mr. Romney, whose momentum in the polls stalled out in mid-October. Instead, it is President Obama who is making gains.”
Obama led by an average of 1.6 points in the 12 final presidential polls released Monday. That figure represents a gain of 1.5 percentage points from the previous version of those same polls, showing Obama gaining ground leading into Election Day.
Silver’s projection gave Obama a 92 percent chance of victory on Election Day morning.
Some national outlets are predicting a close raced based on final election polls, however. The National Journal noted that presidential polls from this weekend show Obama and Romney in a tight race nationwide, but Obama with the most realistic path to victory:
“President Obama and Mitt Romney are neck-and-neck in national polls released on the final weekend before Election Day, but Obama’s Midwestern “firewall” of Iowa, Ohio and Wisconsin is holding and he maintains a distinct advantage in the contest for the 270 electoral votes needed to win the White House.
“The disparity between the national and state surveys presents two potential scenarios for Tuesday night: The two will converge, with Obama edging up in the national popular vote or Romney surging in battleground states, or Obama could become the second candidate in the last four elections to win the Electoral College and the presidency while capturing fewer votes than his opponent.”
As pundits have noted, the only final presidential polls that matter now are those counted on Election Night.