New polls show Obama ahead in Ohio, North Carolina, New Mexico
A new set of polls released today shows President Obama leading in three key swing states two months before the presidential election. The three states combine for 38 electoral votes. More importantly, it is hard, if not impossible, to formulate a Romney path to electoral victory without including North Carolina, and probably Ohio, in the Romney win column.
The first survey, from Public Policy Polling (PPP), has President Obama up by five points on Romney in Ohio (50% to 45%). The poll was exclusively after the end of the Democratic National Convention. In early August PPP gave President Obama a three-point lead on Romney in Ohio. PPP’s poll included only likely voters, which should theoretically benefit Romney.
Ohio may be the most important swing state in 2012, given its 18 electoral votes. Both Romney and Obama begin with a base of 150 votes they can safely rely upon, and Obama will probably lose some states like Indiana that he won in 2008. Both Romney and Obama can get to 270 electoral votes without Florida, but when adding up the numbers it is very hard for either candidate to get to 270 if he loses both Ohio and Florida. Nate Silver of the New York Times currently rates Ohio as the most important state in 2012, with a 22.2% probability that Ohio will be decisive in determining the winner.
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