Tampa, Florida (CNN) – As the Republican convention gets underway, a new survey indicates the battle for this crucial battleground state's 29 electoral votes is extremely close.
And, according to a CNN/Time Magazine/ORC poll in North Carolina, the swing state where the Democratic convention kicks off next week, the race for the White House is a dead heat.
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Both polls were released Monday.
The Florida survey indicates that 50% of likely Sunshine State voters are backing President Barack Obama, with 46% supporting Republican challenger Mitt Romney. The president's four point advantage is within the survey's sampling error. According to the poll, independent voters in Florida are divided.
"President Obama has a huge lead in the Democratic strongholds near Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and Palm Beach. Mitt Romney has almost as big a lead in the northern part of the state. The two men are currently battling to a draw in the I-4 corridor where most Florida elections are won or lost," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
Eighty-five percent of likely voters said their minds were made up, with 13% saying they could still change their minds.
Then-Senator Obama won Florida by three points over Sen. John McCain in the 2008 presidential election.
In North Carolina, the CNN/Time Magazine/ORC poll indicates a dead heat, with 48% of likely voters supporting Romney and 47% backing Obama. Among independent voters, Romney has a 13 point lead.
"In North Carolina, it's an east-west split, rather than the north-south division we see in Florida," Holland notes. "Obama's strength east of I-95 and in the Research Triangle area roughly matches the advantage Romney has in the central and western parts of the state."
Just over eight in ten likely voters said their minds were made up, with 16% saying they could still change their minds.
Obama narrowly won North Carolina four years ago, the first Democrat to carry the state in a presidential election since 1976. Fifteen electoral votes are up for grabs in the state.
Age also plays a factor in both states, particularly in Florida. But there is no indication that the debate over Medicare in the wake of Romney's selection of Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate has moved the needle among senior citizens. Obama won 45% of the vote among Florida voters over the age of 65 in 2008 and is getting 45% among that group now. His share of the senior vote in North Carolina is also virtually the same as it was four years ago.
The CNN/Time poll was conducted by ORC International, with 1,020 Florida adults, including 895 registered voters and 776 likely voters, questioned by telephone. In North Carolina, 1,019 adults, including 905 registered voters and 766 likely voters, questioned by phone. The sampling error in both surveys for likely voters is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
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