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Poll: Pa. Back In Play as Romney Closes Gap

Once regarded as solidly in President Obama's column, Pennsylvania may be a swing state again.

As President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney prepared to square off in the second of three scheduled presidential debates on Tuesday night, new polling data indicated that the Republican challenger had substantially narrowed what once seemed like an insurmountable lead for the President in Pennsylvania.

Bloomberg News reported that a Quinnipiac University poll of 1,519 likely Pa. voters favored Obama by just four percentage points over Romney. The poll was conducted between Oct. 12 and Oct. 14. Just one month ago, Obama held a 12 point lead in the state, and some news reports indicated that the Romney campaign had begun to focus its resources elsewhere. Obama carried the state by more than 10 percentage points in the 2008 election.

Obama is still under 50 percent and Pennsylvania is still in play according to the latest poll from the Allentown Morning Call and Muhlenberg College.

The latest Public Policy Polling shows Obama above 50 percent and leading Mitt Romney by 7 points in Pennsylvania.

"President Obama continues to disappoint voters here by breaking the promises he made as a candidate, and failing to offer a legitimate case for four more years of the last four years," said Billy Pitman, director of communications for the Republican National Committee in Pennsylvania, in an email message to media outlets. "Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan offer a clear choice for leadership and a new direction that will create jobs, fix our economy and strengthen the middle class."

Male voters in the poll substantially favored Romney, while Obama held a commanding lead among women. Voters who described themselves as independent reportedly favored Obama, 50 percent to 43 percent.

The President's lead nationally has been slipping since his widely-criticized performance in the first presidential debate on Oct. 3. Tuesday evening's debate will take the form of a town meeting, in which citizens will ask questions of the candidates on foreign and domestic issues. Candidates each will have two minutes to respond, and an additional minute for the moderator to facilitate a discussion.

Jack Minster October 16, 2012 at 03:56 PM
Quinnipiac under-samples likely Republican voters by 6-11%. More accurate polling firms like Susquehanna recently had Pennsylvania at Obama 47, Romney 45, before the first debate. Pennsylvania is most definitely now a swing state, first time since 1988.

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