Public Policy Polling released the results of its most recent Ohio poll on Saturday, showing Mitt Romney pulling within 1 point of President Obama in the critical battleground state, largely narrowing a 5-point gap from last week, even though respondents thought Obama won Tuesday night’s debate by a margin of 48-39.
Both Bruce Springsteen and Bill Clinton rallied for Obama in Parma, Ohio on Thursday. Obama won Ohio by more than 200,000 votes in 2008.
PPP attributes Romney’s boost in Ohio to his popularity with Independents, with whom he commands a 49-42 lead. Of the 532 likely voters sampled between Oct. 18 and 20, 27 percent identified themselves as Independents, while 42 percent identified as Democrats and 34 percent as Republicans.
Ohioans tell PPP that they trust Romney more on the issues of the economy (51-47) and Libya (49-47).
However, Obama has a big lead with women (55-41) and is more trusted on women’s issues (52-44). Women accounted for 54 percent of the poll sample.
PPP points to a huge lead for Obama in early voting, making Election Day turnout critical for Romney.
Obama does have one big advantage in Ohio though- he’s already winning the election there. 21% of voters in the state say they’ve already voted, and they report having supported Obama 66/34. Romney has the 52/44 advantage among those yet to cast their ballots but obviously it’s easier to count on votes that are already in the bank.
The biggest overall shift, though, is in Romney’s favorability rating in the state, which has demonstrated a 30-point shift since February.
PPP also shows the gap between Senate candidates Sherrod Brown and Josh Mandel narrowing, with Brown commanding a 5-point lead, down from a 7-point lead last week.