Obama at record-low approval in Pa.; tied with generic opponent

A new poll released Thursday showed President Obama statistically tied with a generic Republican challenger among Pennsylvania voters, despite having his lowest approval rating ever in the Keystone State. 

Forty percent of registered voters in the key swing state would vote for Obama, while 41 percent would choose his Republican opponent, a statistical tie, according to a Quinnipac University poll. But in the same poll, 53 percent said they disapprove of Obama's job performance and 52 percent said he should not be reelected.

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Obama's low numbers show that Pennsylvania could be up for grabs in the 2012 election after he won it 55 percent to 44 percent in 2008.

The poll shows that Republicans don't seem to be gaining traction there either. Obama's drop-off, however, has been significant: his approval rating in February was 51 percent to 44 percent.

The Quinnipiac poll of Pennsylvania voters matches national polling that shows the president is as unpopular as ever but that his potential Republican opponents are also viewed skeptically. 

Rising gas prices and the U.S. intervention in Libya appear to be driving Obama's low ratings in Pennsylvania, as are self-described independent voters.

Fifty-six percent say that the president does not deserve a second term. A smaller group (36 percent) say they would vote for a Republican, compared to 29 percent who would vote for Obama and 23 percent who say it depends on the candidate.

Quinnipiac surveyed 1,366 registered voters in Pennsylvania between April 19-25. The poll has a margin of error of 2.7 percentage points.