Times/Herald poll: Obama 46%, Romney 45%


A new Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald/Bay News 9 poll finds Barack Obama and Mitt Romney essentially tied in America’s biggest battleground state, with 46 percent of likely Florida voters supporting the president, 45 percent backing the former Massachusetts governor, and 2 percent behind Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson. Only 7 percent are undecided.

“A coin toss,” Mason-Dixon pollster Brad Coker said. “Typical Florida.”

Adding Republican Sen. Marco Rubio to the Romney ticket would only marginally help Romney in must-win Florida. A Romney-Rubio ticket leads Obama-Joe Biden 46 percent to 45 percent in Florida.

Dig into the numbers, and what’s most surprising is that Obama is at all competitive with Romney:

• 54 percent of likely Florida voters say the country is on the “wrong track” with Obama at the helm.

• Only 35 percent believe his policies have improved the economy, while 41 percent say they have made it worse.

• 46 percent of voters approve of the president’s job performance, while 50 percent disapprove.

• 52 percent oppose the health care overhaul — Obama’s signature achievement recently upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court — and 50 percent of Florida voters want to see it repealed.

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Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.