WASHINGTON — A new poll released Monday indicates President Barack Obama and presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney are in a dead heat, six months ahead of the November 6 election.
The survey shows Romney with a one-percentage point advantage, 48%-47%, over the president among likely voters, well within the Politico/George Washington University poll's sampling error.
Also in the poll, Romney has a 10-point margin over the president among independents, a crucial voting block, with 48% supporting the former Massachusetts governor, while 38% back Obama. Of those who say they are "extremely likely" to vote, Romney is ahead by six percentage points, the poll shows.
The survey was conducted April 29 through May 3, a period in the campaign marked by bitter political fights surrounding the one-year anniversary of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. The survey's window of time also included the president's surprise trip to Afghanistan.
This month's numbers mark a notable change since the survey was conducted in February, when Romney was still battling for GOP nomination. At that time, Obama held a nine-percentage point advantage over Romney overall.
Since then, Republican rivals Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich have dropped out of the race, and many top Republicans have rallied behind Romney.
Recent polls also show Romney gaining ground in key battleground states, including Ohio, Virginia and Florida. For the survey, The Tarrance Group and Lake Research Partners interviewed 1,000 likely voters by phone between April 29 and May 3. The poll has a sampling error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.