President Barack Obama, left, and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney are still fighting for the 33 combined electoral votes still in play in Virginia and Pennsylvania. (Photo : Reuters)
The 13 electoral votes up for grabs in Virginia aren't going to be an easy victory for either the Obama or the Romney campaigns, and with recent polls projecting either a tie or a slim lead for the president, it is looking like the election in this state may come down to the wire.
As of Oct. 26, Real Clear Politics is showing a tie in the state between President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney at 48 percent. However, this is including two recent polls submitted last week that show tales of two different races.
Gravis Marketing's automated survey of 645 likely voters-the margin of error being 3.9 percent-showed Obama and Romney tied at 48 percent. Romney was leading with Virginia men by a three percent edge, 49 percent to 46 percent, but Obama was ahead with women in the Old Dominion State, 50 percent to 46 percent. Independent voters in Virginia were found to favor Romney handily, 58 percent to 31 percent.
At the same time, a phone survey of 1,504 Virginia residents by the Washington Post-conducted between Oct. 22 and 26-showed that 51 percent of likely voters favored Obama, while 47 percent were leaning towards Romney. However, Romney had closed an eight-point gap that he was trailing behind in last month in the same poll, when Obama was ahead 52 percent to 44 percent.
Virginia has been pointed out to be a very critical state for the Romney campaign, which has few projected paths to taking the necessary 270 to win the White House on Nov. 6 that do not include Virginia.
"Virginia now ranks second on our list of tipping-point states," wrote New York Times pollster Nate Silver on the newspaper's Five Thirty Eight on Sunday. "It has a 15 percent chance of deciding the election - well behind Ohio's 49 percent chance, but ahead of everything else."
Up north in Pennsylvania, the race is on for the state's 20 electoral votes. Real Clear Politics projects Obama leading in all polls since Oct. 21 by a 4.7 percent average, 49.5 percent to Romney's 44.8 percent.
The most recent poll was taken Oct. 25 by the Philadelphia-based publication Philadelphia Inquirer, which showed Obama holding a six-point edge over Romney, 49 percent to 43 percent. The poll shows that Romney had improved his standing by two points from when he was down the previous week 50 percent to 42 percent in the first week of October.
Despite being down in Pennsylvania, Romney supporters appear to be moving to change the tide in Pennsylvania, the New York Times reports, with news of a super PAC called "Restore Our Future" purchasing Monday roughly $2 million for a new wave of Romney advertisements to air in the state through next week.
The move prompted the Obama campaign to respond the same day that they would also be airing their own campaign ads in Pennsylvania.