Barack Obama has received a vote of confidence from the Irish public in his bid to stay in the White House. 79 per cent say they would vote for him.

The outgoing US President is the clear favourite with the Irish to win the forthcoming election ahead of Mitt Romney.

An opinion poll in the Irish Times newspaper shows that the vast majority of people in Ireland want Obama to win.

The latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll returns only a tiny level of support among the electorate for Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

The paper reports that when asked who they would support if they had a vote in the US election, 79 per cent of respondents said Obama.

Just five per cent opted for Romney while 16 per cent had no opinion.

The survey was undertaken last week among a representative sample of 1,000 voters aged 18 and over. The margin of error is plus or minus 3 per cent.

The Irish Times reports that Fine Gael voters give twice as much support to Romney than supporters of any other party but even at that, 81 per cent of them want an Obama victory.
Just three per cent of Labour Party voters want Romney to win.

The paper says that better-off AB voters are twice as likely to support Romney as those in the poorest DE socio-economic category, but again the level of support for Obama in both groups is overwhelming.

Support for Obama is consistent across all age groups with a slight dip in the over-65s who are more likely than any other age category to back Romney.

The report says that Obama wins in the personality stakes and also benefits for historical Irish support for the Democratic Party.

In the past the Irish public have embraced visits from Democratic presidents John F Kennedy, Bill Clinton and Obama.

Muted receptions were afforded to Republicans Richard Nixon and George W Bush.