By Kenric Ward | Watchdog.org Virginia Bureau
Obama leads Romney 49-47 in the poll released Wednesday morning. The president held a 51-46 advantage in Quinnipiac’s previous Virginia survey on Oct. 11, conducted before the first presidential debate.
Obama’s 2-point lead is within the poll’s 3-point statistical margin of error.
“After being subjected to what seems like a zillion dollars’ worth of television ads and personal attention from the two candidates reminiscent of a high-school crush, the key swing states of Florida and Virginia are too close to call with the election only days away,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
Quinnipiac’s swing-state survey showed Obama up by a single point — 48-47 — in Florida and holding a 50-45 lead over his GOP challenger in Ohio. No modern-day Republican candidate has won the presidency without carrying Ohio.
Romney’s biggest gains in Virginia were among women. He still trails Obama 53-43 among that group, but the president’s lead has shrunk from the 56-40 advantage he enjoyed back on Oct. 11.
Men go with the former Massachusetts governor 52-43 percent.
White voters support Romney 59-37 while black voters back Obama 93-6 percent.
Independent voters go Republican 57-36 percent.
“The gender gap which has marked this campaign is getting smaller in Florida and Virginia,” Brown noted.
“In general, women are about 10 points plus for President Obama and men are in Gov. Romney’s corner by about the same margin. This represents a slight increase for Romney among men and women. In some earlier polls, Obama’s lead among women had been in the high teens,” Brown said.
“Much of the difference between Obama’s solid lead at this point four years ago and today in the swing states and nationally is the drop in the president’s support among white voters.”
The president still has a hefty lead when voters are asked who cares most about their needs and problems. Obama scores 60-36 in that category.
But Romney won the “strong leadership qualities” question, 64-31 versus 55-43 for Obama.
By a margin of 40-35, Virginia respondents said the nation’s economy is getting better. The economy was listed as the most important campaign issue by 49 percent of those surveyed.
In other results, Quinnipiac reported:
- Virginia’s U.S. Senate race is getting closer as Democrat Tim Kaine holds a slim 50-46 percent lead over Republican George Allen, compared with a 51-44 percent lead Oct. 11. Independent voters back the Republican 56-38.
- Virginia voters approve 49-31 percent of the job Gov. Bob McDonnell is doing. That was a better overall rating than fellow Republican Govs. Rick Scott of Florida or John Kasich of Ohio.
The Quinnipiac poll, conducted Oct. 23-28 in cooperation with the New York Times and CBS News, surveyed 1,074 Virginia likely voters with a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent. The survey was conducted via live interviews on telephone land lines and cell phones. See detailed crosstabs here.
Other recent polls suggested that the GOP may be gaining the upper hand in Virginia.
A Zogby Internet survey conducted over the weekend showed Romney leading 48.8-45.1 — just outside its 3.5-point margin of error. A new Roanoke College poll had Romney up 49-44 and showed Allen beating Kaine 47-42.
Suffolk University pulled its polling operation out of Virginia last month, declaring that Obama could not win the Old Dominion. This week, the Mason-Dixon Poll quit Florida, saying it had reached the same conclusion in the Sunshine State.
Contact Kenric Ward at email@example.com or (571) 319-9824.