Romney less visible on the trail lately -- to no ill effect

There are good reasons for this lull in his campaign schedule: For one thing, he’s on a massive fundraising spree, and just wrapped a lengthy swing through cash-heavy California (where he also spent some downtime at his La Jolla home). One Republican insider called Romney a fundraising “maniac,” pointing out that after the candidate started raising funds with the Republican National Committee in mid-April, the joint effort was just $3.5 million short of the combined Democratic National Committee/Obama for America haul, $43.6 million to $40.1 million, and did not even represent a full month of trying.

Still, this light campaign schedule is not an anomaly or a great change from recent weeks. Romney has had almost as many weekdays without public events scheduled as days with them. In fact, since he jumped into the presidential race one year ago, the presumptive GOP nominee has often spaced out his events, preferring just one a day and generally eschewing them on weekends. He departed twice from that schedule: when he was at risk of losing his clear path to the nomination to Newt Gingrich in December and then to Rick Santorum in February…

And yet, despite this lessening visibility, his favorability rating has climbed steadily. In a CNN/ORC survey, that rating jumped 14 points, to 48 percent, since February, putting him just eight points behind the president’s longstanding high rating. The recent poll also shows the race is within the margin of error.

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