Poll: Romney gains 21 points in favorability among female voters

Female voters have boosted Mitt Romney to his highest favorability rating to date, according to an ABC News-Washington Post poll released on Wednesday.

While still negative, Romney’s favorability among women is on the upswing, with 40 percent saying they have a favorable view of the presumptive GOP nominee, compared to 44 negative. That’s a 21-point swing from the same poll in April, when Romney was at 27 favorable and 52 unfavorable among women.

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Obama has seen a small decline among women, at 51 favorable and 44 unfavorable. Last month he was at 58 favorable and 36 unfavorable.

The increase in favorability among women has buoyed Romney’s overall favorability, which was historically low for a frontrunner throughout the Republican primaries. Last month Romney was underwater by 12 percent overall, but is now moving toward break-even, at 41 favorable and 45 unfavorable overall. It’s the first time Romney has topped 40 percent this cycle.

Obama’s overall favorability has declined to 52 favorable and 45 unfavorable, compared to last month when he was at 56 favorable and 40 unfavorable.

While Romney is the only modern-day candidate to have a negative approval rating at this point in the race, according to ABC News-Washington Post data, the improvement among female voters is encouraging his campaign.

Obama has held a massive lead over Romney among women so far, and Democrats have kept the pressure on by attacking Romney for “turning back the clock” on women’s health issues.

The Romney campaign has worked to flip the script by charging that the Obama administration’s handling of the economy is the real issue that affects women.

The poll of 1,021 adults was conducted between May 23 and 27 and has a 3.5 percent margin of error.