Obama leads all GOP candidates in head-to-head contests

Obama leads all GOP candidates in head-to-head contests

President Barack Obama is leading all of the Republican presidential candidates in head-to-head match-ups, according to a poll released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

• A national survey taken March 7-11 showed Obama leading Romney by 12 percentage points (54-42) and even further ahead of Santorum with 57 percent of support to Santorum’s 29 percent.

• For the first time since shortly after Osama bin Laden was killed, half of all Americans (50 percent) say they approve of Barack Obama’s job performance.

• Mitt Romney currently holds a 33-24 lead over Santorum among registered Republican and Republican-leaning independent voters, with 20 percent backing Newt Gingrich and 14 percent favoring Ron Paul.

• By a 59-32 margin, most Americans think Barack Obama will win the election if Mitt Romney is the Republican nominee. That margin is far wider if Rick Santorum is the GOP nominee: 68 percent think Obama would win, while just 24 percent predict a Santorum presidency.

• In the current survey, just 29 percent of Americans say they have a favorable view of Romney, while 51 percent say they have an unfavorable impression.

• Women favor Obama over Romney by 20 points—virtually unchanged from a month ago.