President Barack Obama, right, is looking to hold off Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, seen here at the conclusion of the final presidential debate Monday, in the critical Ohio election as Election Day on Nov. 6 draws near.
(Photo : Reuters)
All roads seem to lead through Ohio for Nov. 6's presidential election, where President Barack Obama is maintaining a narrow edge over Republican challenger Mitt Romney in several polls-including one from TIME, showing the president leading by five percentage points.
The latest polls, according to Real Clear Politics, are showing Obama, on average, to be leading by 2.1 points, 47.9 percent to 45.8 percent for Romney.
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Two of the latest polls, from Rasmussen Reports and one from TIME, show pictures of two different races.
Rasmussen Reports reported Tuesday that the race was actually tied at 48 apiece for both candidates in Ohio among 750 likely voters, while a new TIME poll of 758 likely voters shows that Obama has a larger lead than projected at 5 points, 49 percent to 44 percent.
The TIME poll's margin of error is plus or minus three percentage points.
As TIME reports, the poll reflects that while the candidates are tied at 45 percent among likely voters, Obama is leading 60 percent to 30 percent ahead of Romney among poll respondents who say they have already voted. When combined, the TIME poll gives Obama his five-point edge.
"At least for the early vote, the Obama ground game seems to be working," Mark Schulman, president of Abt SRBI, which conducted the poll, told TIME.
And in another poll released Wednesday from Survey USA, Obama is maintaining the lead in Ohio over Romney, 47 percent to 44 percent.
With 18 electoral votes to yield, Ohio is considered widely to be among the most important swing states up for grabs in the election. No Republican candidate has ever won the presidency without the state of Ohio, which Obama won in 2008 by 4.6 points.
Journalist Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post's PostPartisan blog told MSNBC this week that he was "polled out."
"There are so many polls, he's up, he's up, he's down, this one is up, this one is down, who do you believe?" he said.
Speaking on a new Gallup poll that shows Obama has closed the gap by three points between himself and Romney, 47 percent to 50 percent with Romney still leading in that poll, Capehart told MSNBC's Martin Bashir that while the Obama campaign is feeling "very good" on that one poll, they are still ultimately focused on the goal of generating a large turnout for Obama.
"The fact that the president has sliced in half Mitt Romney's lead in the Gallup Poll has people in the building behind me feeling very good just in terms of that one poll," he said, speaking in front of the White House, "but when you talk to the people out here and you talk to the people out in the field, they know, and they have always known, that this is going to be a close race, and they can't let one poll or a series of polls distract them from what they really need to do, and that is to get people out to vote either early or get them to vote on Election Day."