A Quinnipiac University/New York Times/CBS News poll released Wednesday is calling Virginia up for grabs in both the presidential race between President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney and in the U.S. Senate race between former Govs. George Allen (R) and Tim Kaine.
“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 Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “President Barack Obama clings to a 5-point lead in Ohio, but Gov. Mitt Romney has narrowed the president’s lead that existed in Florida and Virginia before the first debate.”
The poll of 1,074 likely Virginia voters shows Obama with 49 percent compared to Romney's 47 percent, which is well within the survey's plus or minus 3 percentage point margin of error.
Obama has slipped since the last Quinnipiac poll released Oct. 12 where he had 51 percent to Romney's 46 percent.
The poll showed Obama with a 10 percnetage point lead among women, but Romney has closed an earlier gap from previous polls. In Wednesday's poll Obama polled 53 percent to Romney's 43 percent. Romney continues to have a lead among men with 52 percent to Obama's 43 percent.
“The gender gap which has marked this campaign is getting smaller in Florida and Virginia,” Brown said. “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."
RealClearPolitics.com, which offers an averga of recent polls, has the presidential a virtual dead-heat in Virginia with Romney up by .5 percentage points over Obama. Romney averages 47.9 percent to Obama's 47.4 percent.
In the Senate race Kaine holds a 4 percentage point lead. The poll has Kaine with 50 percent to Allen's 46 percent. In the Oct 12 poll Kaine lead with 51 percent to Allen's 44 percent. In Wednesday's poll Allen had a strong lead with independent voters with 56 percent to Kaine's 38 percent.
“Virginia’s U.S. Senate race, which opened up a little in recent months is once again getting close, with Democrat Tim Kaine holding on to a small lead," Brown said. "One reason: Although George Allen is carrying independents handily, he enjoys about 10-points lower support among Republicans than Kaine does among Democrats.”
The RealClearPolitics.com average of recent polls has Kaine with 47.6 percent to Allen's 46.6 percent.