Polls: Tight race for Ohio's 18 electoral votes

Thursday, August 23, 2012 - 11:13am

It was close in Ohio. It's still close in Ohio.

Two new surveys out Thursday indicate the Buckeye State remains a hotly contested battleground in the race for the White House.
According to the latest Ohio Poll by the University of Cincinnati, 49% of likely voters support President Barack Obama, with 46% backing Republican challenger Mitt Romney. The president's three point margin is within the poll's sampling error.

A Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times survey also released Thursday indicates Obama with a 50%-44% lead over Romney. The president's six point advantage is just outside the survey's sampling error.

The Ohio Poll indicates the gender gap is alive and well in the Buckeye State, with Obama leading by 18 points among women and Romney leading by 15 points among men. Romney also has a 51%-39% advantage among independent voters.

According to the survey, Romney has the edge among Ohio voters on which candidate would do a better job on controlling government spending and on the economy, while Obama has the edge on Medicare and foreign policy.

The polls' release comes two days before Romney and his running mate, House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, team up for a rally just outside Columbus, and they come two days after Obama campaigned in Columbus. Obama has made seven trips to Ohio since the start of the general election in April, with Romney making eight visits.

Ohio's 18 electoral votes are expected to be pivotal to the 2012 presidential election. President George W. Bush sealed his 2004 re-election by narrowly winning the state over the Democratic challenger, Sen. John Kerry. In 2008 then-Sen. Obama took the state by 5 points over Sen. John McCain. But the GOP won big in the state in the 2010 midterm elections, taking back the governor's office and five House seats held by Democrats.

The Ohio Poll was conducted by the University of Ohio from August 16-21, with 847 likely voters statewide questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.


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