President Obama has leveled at 50 percent in the electoral college’s biggest prize, Ohio, according to a poll from CNN released Friday.
Obama gets 50 percent of likely voters in Ohio against Romney’s 46 percent, representing little change from CNN’s previous poll of the state that showed Obama at 51 percent to Romney’s 47 percent in early October, just after the first presidential debate. Obama has spent most of October fighting off Republican candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s momentum in the crucial swing state and nationally after his performance in the first debate.
“The race in the Buckeye State is essentially unchanged,” said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland, citing the early October numbers. Two other polls released Friday showed Obama with a 2-point lead in the Buckeye state, one from American Research Group and other from Purple Strategies.
The PollTracker Average of the Ohio shows President Obama pushing toward 50 percent overall.
The gender gap, something that’s been a national trend but especially pronounced in Ohio, remains so in the CNN numbers. Obama gets 56 percent of likely women voters, against Romney’s 42 percent. Romney takes 50 percent of men voters but Obama gets 44 percent, resulting in the overall top-line lead. Obama also wins independent voters, one third of the sample, 49 percent to Romney’s 44 percent.
And as other surveys have shown, the president’s early vote advantage in the state is substantial. “Among those who have voted early or plan to vote before Election Day, Obama holds a 59%-38% lead, with Romney up 51%-44% among those who say they’ll vote on Election Day,” CNN wrote. “Ninety-two percent of likely voters say they’ve made up their minds, with 4% saying they could change their minds.”
The CNN poll used 741 live telephone interviews with likely voters via landline and cell phone, conducted Oct. 23-25. It has a sampling error of 3.5 percent.
Kyle is the Editor of TPM Media’s PollTracker. He graduated from Beloit College (WI) and began working in politics before getting an M.A. in magazine journalism from New York University, where he interned at TPM and the website of The New Yorker.