CNN Poll: Ohio Stays In Obama Column After Debate

Kyle Leighton

President Obama retained the lead in a big prize on the electoral map, Ohio, according to a poll released Tuesday by CNN.

Obama leads Romney 51 percent to 47 percent in the Buckeye State, a smaller advantage than the president has had in the state during the last few weeks of polling. But with Romney surging nationally on a good performance in the first presidential debate, the CNN numbers contradict four other polls fielded after the event that showed the race within 1 point, and Romney leading three of them.

CNN pointed to the gender gap as the reason for Obama's lead -- the president is up 22 points with women, while Romney leads men by 14 points. Obama also leads 50 percent to Romney's 46 percent among independent voters.

The results put the overall PollTracker Average of the race in Ohio at a 1.9 percent lead for the president.

Ohio had been firmly in the Obama column before the first debate, with the president hitting 53 percent in a New York Times/Wall Street Journal/Quinnipiac survey and 52 percent in a Washington Post poll. Romney was at 43 percent and 44 percent respectively in those two polls, taken in late September. The new CNN data suggests that more voters have moved from the undecided column to Romney, but fewer have switched from Obama to Romney.

The CNN poll used 722 live telephone interviews with likely voters via landline and cell phones, conducted Oct. 5-8. It has a sampling error of 3.5 percent.