POLITICS
11/03/2012 12:21 am ET Updated Nov 03, 2012

Obama Leads In Ohio, Narrowly Ahead In Florida, Poll Says

President Barack Obama leads Mitt Romney by six percentage points in Ohio, and edges the Republican by two points in Florida, according to an NBC/WSJ/Marist poll released Friday night.

The poll finds Obama ahead 51 percent to 45 percent among likely voters in Ohio, and 49 percent to 47 percent among likely Florida voters.

Both campaigns have their eye on Ohio, which is especially critical to the Romney campaign's path to 270 electoral votes.

"Ohio, you're the lynchpin, you're the battleground of battlegrounds," Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan said Friday, while campaigning in the state.

Obama, also in Ohio, urged supporters to the polls, telling them that “Voting is the best revenge.”

Compared with other publicly released polling, NBC/WSJ/Marist's surveys have been somewhat more favorable to Obama in Ohio and close to the average in Florida. Its polls showed Obama leading by seven points in Ohio and by five in Florida in early September. In early October, the same polls put Obama ahead by six to eight points in Ohio and by one point in Florida.

In Ohio, HuffPost Pollster's model estimates that Obama leads by slightly less than three points. Of the 20 polls released in the state since Oct. 25, 18 show the president ahead, by margins of one to six points. Two polls by Rasmussen found the race first favoring Romney by two points, and then tied as of Nov. 1. A survey by the Republican firm Wenzel Strategies for Citizens United found Romney up by three points.

The race in Florida is incredibly tight, with the HuffPost/Pollster model estimating an exact tie early Saturday, with each candidate attracting just over 48 percent of likely voters. Of the 13 polls released since Oct. 25, seven show Obama leading, by one to two points. Four show Romney ahead by one to six points, and one, SurveyUSA, has the race tied.

The NBC/WSJ/Marist poll used live telephone interviews to survey 1,545 likely voters in Florida and 971 likely voters in Ohio Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. The Florida poll has a 2.5 percent margin of error, while the Ohio poll has a 3.1 percent margin of error.

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