Romney polls showing the GOP challenger eliminating the gap with President Obama have brought a new sense of urgency to a race that just a week ago looked close to slipping away.
A strong performance in the first presidential debate last Wednesday pushed Mitt Romney in polls, allowing him to grow closer to Obama and in some cases even come out ahead in polling done this week. As The Associated Press reported, the now-close race means that both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have a greater sense of urgency in their travels to swing states.
Obama still have a stronger electoral map, with slim leads in many of important swing stages, but Romney’s polls are improving rapidly. After 67 million people watched a debate last week that was nearly universally scored as a win for Romney,the GOP challenger is looking to make gains in the nine battleground states worth a collective 110 votes — Ohio, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina and Colorado.
Perhaps none of these states is more important than Ohio, which polling blog FiveThirtyEight notes is the key to victory for both candidates. Romney adviser Charlie Black said the fact that Romney’s polls now show him even with Obama nationally means he has closed on Obama in Ohio as well.
“I promise you, he’s back in the game in Ohio,” Black said.
The strong debate performance has also allowed Romney to gain ground in the likeability column. As ABC OTUS News reported, a new poll from ABC News/Washington Post found that Romney’s likeability marks have reached the highest point ever with 47 percent, though 51 percent still say they do not like him.