Polls show tight Obama-Romney race just getting closer

Polls show the already tight presidential race is getting even closer just a week before Election Day.

A handful of polls released Tuesday show President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney either tied or within 1 percentage point of each other. None of the polls show either candidate hitting the 50 percent mark.

A survey from Pew Research showed the candidates locked at 47 percent, a Washington Post poll showed them tied at 49 percent, and a survey from NPR shows Romney ahead of Obama by 49 to 48 percent.

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Gallup is not releasing a daily tracking poll on Tuesday because of Hurricane Sandy.

The NPR survey showed Obama with a 4-point lead over Romney in the 12 battleground states that will determine the winner of the Electoral College.

However, the NPR survey polls the battleground states as a whole, and could overweigh Obama’s lead because of his outsized support in a state like New Mexico, which most no longer consider a swing state.

Romney has held a lead in a number of national polls since the first debate, while swing-state polls suggest Obama has a lead in the race to win the Electoral College, which will decide the outcome.

A host of individual swing state polls released Tuesday show a tighter race in the swing states, with good and bad news for both candidates.

According to a Newsmax/Zogby poll of Florida, Romney is edging Obama 48 to 47 percent, while a SurveyUSA poll shows the candidates tied at 47 percent.

Many analysts have been ready to move Florida squarely into Romney’s column — some surveys had begun to show Romney with a lead as big as 5 to 7 points there — but the polls have done nothing but tighten in the Sunshine State over the last two weeks.

According to the Real Clear Politics average of polls, the GOP candidate’s lead in Florida is down to a 1.3 percent, and the four most recent polls of the state show either Romney with a 1-point lead, Obama with a 1-point lead, or a tie.

Romney does not have a realistic path to an Electoral College victory without Florida. He will campaign in Tampa, Jacksonville and Miami on Wednesday.

Romney’s post-debate surge had also provoked talk that, along with Florida, he would sweep the two other Southern swing states of Virginia and North Carolina. North Carolina still looks safely Republican, but recent polling shows Obama gaining in Virginia.

But there’s good news for Romney in the swing states as well. The presidential race has tightened dramatically in Ohio, which appears more likely than any other state to decide who will win the White House.

A Rasmussen Reports survey released Monday shows Romney overtaking the president in Ohio for the first time since May, with 50 percent support to Obama's 48 percent. This follows a Cincinnati Enquirer/Ohio News Organization poll over the weekend that showed the candidates tied at 49 percent.

With perhaps only a handful of true toss-up states left, Ohio could prove indispensable for each campaign in their quest for the 270 Electoral College votes necessary for victory.

And perhaps most troubling for the Obama campaign are polls coming out of states that he should’ve already locked up.

An Elway poll released Tuesday shows Romney closing the gap on Obama in Oregon, which hasn’t gone for a Republican presidential candidate since 1984, and which Obama carried by 17 points in 2008.

While it’s unlikely Obama will lose the state this year, it’s perhaps a sign that the president is bleeding support across the board, making his thin swing-state advantage all the more tenuous.

Similarly, a Minneapolis Star Tribune survey last week showed Romney within 3 points of Obama in Minnesota, which hasn’t gone Republican since 1972. The Obama campaign has dispatched former President Clinton to shore up support there, and both campaigns have shifted some small-dollar ad buys to the state.

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Romney’s running mate, is holding a press availability at the airport in Minneapolis on Tuesday on his way to a rally in Wisconsin. The Obama campaign pounced on the announcement, saying the Romney campaign was posturing and “desperately looking” for a new path to 270 electoral votes.