In an all-important presidential election year, polling is just as important.
The Akron Press Club heard Thursday from Peter A. Brown, a former journalist who is now assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
Brown says President Obama's campaign has driven a negative perception of Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
"The White House has done a superior job, perhaps the best in my 35 year career, in making people think that Mitt Romney is not their kind of guy," Brown told the Akron Press Club audience at the University of Akron's Martin Center.
Brown says President Obama is holding a slight lead in polls, with a tighter race among those who call themselves "likely voters". He says that's a good position to be in for the President.
But he says the Romney campaign can take advantage of current events, to question how the Obama administration has handled events in the Middle East.
"Whether Romney spoke out of turn or not, that's a one or two day story," Brown told the Press Club. "But the big question about - 'did we do the right thing and have we created a monster?' - that's a different issue. That's a potential big deal."
Brown says people complain all the time about negative campaigning. But he says despite the complaints, negative ads work...and move voters to act.