Poll: Obama up in Ohio, Pa., neck-and-neck in Fla.

Quinnipiac University's latest round of polling shows the Democrat slipping slightly in two key states, but maintaining comfortable leads.

By Alex Koppelman

Published November 3, 2008 2:05PM (EST)

The latest polls from key battleground states contain some good news for Barack Obama. Quinnipiac University's release shows the Democrat's lead in both Ohio and Pennsylvania slipping slightly, but he's still leading comfortably.

In Ohio, Quinnipiac found, Obama leads John McCain by 7 percentage points, 50-43, compared with a 51-42 lead last week. In Pennsylvania, it's a similar story. Obama's up 52-42; last week, he was leading 53-41. (Both polls have a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.)

Probably the most interesting thing out of the Pennsylvania poll is the way white voters in that state are breaking -- they're evenly split: Forty-seven percent support McCain. Forty-seven percent support Obama. That's bad news for the Republican nominee; he needs to be leading among white voters to have any chance.

Quinnipiac also shows Obama ahead in Florida, but just barely, and his 2-point lead falls within the margin of error. He's up 47-45 over McCain, which is unchanged from last week. Two percent of respondents said they'll vote for someone else; 6 percent said they didn't know whom they'd cast their ballot for, or refused to answer.

"Sen. Obama appears headed for the best showing of any Democratic candidate among white voters in a generation, going back at least to Jimmy Carter in 1976 and perhaps even to Lyndon Johnson in 1964," Peter Brown, Quinnipiac's assistant director, said in the release. “Race has been an issue, but green, not black or white, appears to be the color that matters most."

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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2008 Elections Barack Obama John Mccain R-ariz.