(CNN) - With a week and a half to go until Election Day, a new poll indicates the race for arguably the most important battleground state remains very close.
According to a CNN/ORC International survey released Friday, President Barack Obama holds a four point advantage over Republican nominee Mitt Romney in the contest for Ohio's much fought over 18 electoral votes.
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Fifty-percent of likely voters questioned in the poll say they are backing the president, with 46% supporting the former Massachusetts governor. Obama's four point advantage is within the survey's sampling error. The survey was conducted Tuesday through Thursday, entirely after Monday's final presidential debate.
"The race in the Buckeye State is essentially unchanged since early October, when a CNN/ORC poll taken just after the first presidential debate also showed President Obama with a four-point margin over Governor Romney," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
Surveys by other organizations conducted last month, before the first debate, had Obama ahead of Romney by seven to 10 points.
The new poll indicates that Obama has a double digit lead among those who have already voted absentee or early ballot or plan to do so before Election Day, with Romney holding the edge among people who plan to cast their ballot on November 6.
According to the survey, the gender gap has tightened a bit, but the basic storyline remains the same. Obama holds a 56%-42% advantage among female voters, with the GOP challenger up 50%-44% among men.
"In other major demographic groups, the movement since early October has been in the expected direction, with Obama picking up ground among younger voters, lower-income voters and urban voters and losing support among older voters, suburbanites, and higher-income voters," adds Holland. "Looking at age, for example, Obama has gained three points among voters under 50 years old since early October, but lost three points among voters who are 50 and older."
The poll indicates Obama maintains a small but critical advantage among independent voters. In early October, he had a 50%-46% margin among independents - virtually identical to the 49%-44% edge he has today
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. Ninety-two percent of likely voters say they've made up their minds, with 4% saying they could change their minds.
Campaigning Thursday in Cleveland, the president urged Ohioans to vote early: "Ohio you can vote now, you don't have to vote later."
Ohio was the state that put President George W. Bush over the top in his 2004 re-election. Four years later Obama carried the state by five points over Sen. John McCain. But the Republicans performed well in the Buckeye State in the 2010 midterm elections, winning back the governor's office and five House seats from the Democrats.
This cycle Ohio is seeing an outsized amount of campaign traffic from the presidential candidates. This week alone, Obama campaigned in the state on Tuesday and Thursday. Romney spent Thursday making a swing throughout the state, and returns to Ohio Friday evening.
"Ohio is going to set the course for the nation," Romney said Thursday in Defiance, Ohio.
Overall, the campaigns, party committees, and super PACs and other independent groups have spent more than $118 million to run ads on broadcast TV in Ohio since the start of the general election, with the numbers evenly divided between the two sides. Those figures come from Campaign Media Analysis Group, which tracks political advertising for its clients.
Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson, Green Party candidate Jill Stein, and Constitution Party candidate Virgil Goode are also on the presidential ballot in Ohio. When their names were added to the poll, Obama is at 48%, Romney 44%, with Johnson at 4%, Stein at 2% and Goode registering less than one-half of one percent.
The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International from October 23-25, with 1,009 Ohio adults, including 896 registered voters and 741 likely voters, questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
American Research Group also released a live operator, non-partisan poll of likely voters in Ohio on Friday. It was also conducted entirely after the final debate. It indicates Obama with a 49%-47% edge over Romney, which is within the survey's sampling error.
It's sickening the way CNN is frantically doing everything it can to help the worst choice get re-elected. I'll be glad when Romney becomes president and the news media goes back to searching for truth and reporting the news.
Obama has Bruce Springsteen and Mitt Romney has Meatloaf. The irony is that Mitt Romney would never eat meatloaf.
To the people of Ohio...Get out there and vote for Obama. I live in Texas and although I will vote, I am afraid my vote won't count for much. All the democrats in Texas are counting on you to pull this out. We really don't want Romney in the WH. We don't want to return to the way things were under Bush. Things are recovering, slowly but surely. Please and thanks for helping us out!
The GOP is trying hard to STEAL THIS ELECTION!!!!
To to many working class stiffs in Ohio and elsewhere, Romeny reminds them of the manager who showed up one day to tell them that they we're being laid off and by the way, were taking your pensions too. That is why Romney will lose.
Obama and what he stands for is KNOWN...Romney on the other hand, talks out of wither sider of his neck, his mouth and his keester in sequence, then he denies changing positions. His refusal to denounce and remove endorsement of "the rape ranting republicans", alliance with Ann COulter, DOnald TrAmp, John Sununu, and various radicals shows that he has NO backbone and will not stand AGAINST what's wrong in his own party. His "parrot act" during the foreign policy debate was SCARY.
Bottom line: the Romneys are SELFISH and SELF-serving, all about their own money and beneficiaries of caucasian affirmative action. He nor his wife are members of families with any history of public service not purposed on making money...let's not even talk about him DODGING military service.
How can he be a former minister or pastor and be so comfortable with lying? And how can some of you vote for him?
Mitt Romney's strategy for improving the economy: hitting the Easy Button.
People who are voting for bama please learn to read and leave TV out of your way of thinking... Show the reps. where GM paid all of their money back and they don't owe the tax payers. Their stock is to low to pay back the gov. money leaving us with useless stock...
I'm in Canton, Ohio and I don't know any but one of my girlfriends that will vote again for the President. They are leaning Mr. Romney's way more and more. I will wait for election day to make my final decision, but all the high unemployment, and ever rising gas, food, and insurance premium costs and the horrors of Obamacare are making it harder and harder to support President Obama this time around
Anyone who uses the Term "Neocon" should seriously shut up. The term neocon was used for American liberals who criticized communists for following a path closer to Soviet communism. This was rooted from a group of liberals. If you don't know what it means dont say it. Learned that back in grade school but obviously it didn't stick w/ some people.
2 other republican leaning polls Purple Strategies & ARG also indicate Obama in lead in OH. Time poll had Obama up by 5 . Intrade is spiking on this. This is going to sweet victory for Obama..
CALM DOWN LIBS.....The results are WITHIN THE MARGIN OF ERROR..which means its a virtual tie. Not good for Obama as CNN and its polling ALWAYS oversamples democrats...
Lets take a role call shall we:
If the election were any further away I would say the Dems just have to keep silent and let these Reps talk themselves into extinction.
In reply to gr8 usa
The father of the Navy Seal did an interview today and will do an in depth interview tomorrow. I am repeating what he said. It has gone past the point of politization for him. His son was murdered and he wants those responsible to be held accountable...starting with Obama.
No wonder CNN ratings suck so bad. It is not news anymore it is just made up socialist liberal media spin!
"ALL things" Romney. Let's ALL bow down. (Like that comment ???)
I just asked a bunch of people who I work with in Ohio who they are going to vote for. Romney 60%, Obama 40%. My poll has more credibility than a CNN poll. Headline me.
Joe, Bain took companies that were not doing well and kept them alive. Bad companies are mismanaged and when they go out of business they employ no one. How many employees does Solyndra currently have? 0 and that is what would have happened to those companies if Bain had not turned them around. This is freshman business courses at any public college. I suggest you Dems learn a little about the economy before you try to run one.
You don't hear anything for a week from CNN about poll's. Now they have made some stuff up just so they can report on it. Romney is up in just about every poll out there this as bad as MoveOn.org
We feel that President Obama and the First Lady are open, honest, very down to earth and we can relate to them. We don't feel that way about Romney and Ann. We just don't get a open feeling about them. Why won't Romney open up about his tax returns? What's he hiding? Why did Bain Capital/Romney profit from destroying companies and laying off people destroying so many livelihoods? If Romney supported such an organization, I DON'T want such a crooked person as President for sure! Why does Romney keep changing his positions and stance? If he keeps doing this, no one knows his position and what he believes. How can we trust him as President?? Why did Ann, when asked about Romney's tax returns, she said, 'We don't have to tell 'You People' about it! Just very arrogant in every respect! GO OBAMA!!!!!
Why dont you try showing the results of creditable polls instead of the ones you can manipulate. Where is your coverage on breaking news on Benghazi from this morning. Panetta and Hilary should resign today. Try showing some patritism for a change and quit covering for the administration
Based on the earlier Rasmusen poll (which showed a tie, however, Rasmussen historically leans at least one to two points Republican), ARG and now the CNN/Orc poll, it looks like the Rommey surge has peaked a lillte too early in Ohio, and the polls seem to be shifting towards the president. It will be interesting to see if the same story plays out in Virginia and Florida.
Learn to read polls better people. Rasmussen polled 22 – 23rd and it was a tie. All the new polls taken 24 – 25th are showing Obama leading by at least 2%. Ohio is going to Obama. Romney's momentum died after the 3rd debate.
Its simple algebra Romney = Bush = Moron.
Question: If some people are saying CNN is corupt and others are saying Fox News is corupt...which one is acutally corupt? I think in reality people only listen to the news they want to hear.....and if anything goes against what they want to hear we call the information "inaccurate" or "false". Thoughts anyone?