President Barack Obama leads former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney 51 percent to 43 percent among likely voters in Wisconsin, according to a new Marquette Law School Poll. Two weeks ago, the two candidates were nearly tied.
Poll Director Charles Franklin says 5 percent remain undecided. “Among those independents, in mid-October, two weeks ago, following that good first debate performance, Governor Romney led 49 to 45. But now, two weeks later after the other two debates, it’s Obama leading 46 to 41.”
Franklin says, those independent voters account for a significant change in this latest poll. “That modest movement is enough to account for most of the shifts we’re seeing between a one point Obama advantage two weeks ago and now an eight point advantage.”
One percent of likely voters surveyed say they’ll vote for a third party.
In the U.S. Senate election, Representative Tammy Baldwin moves ahead of former Governor Tommy Thompson, 47 percent to 43 percent, with 10 percent undecided. In the previous poll in mid-October, Thompson received 46 percent and Baldwin 45 percent – a statistical dead-heat.
Franklin says negative advertising isn’t helping either candidate in the senate race. “As a result of the negative advertising on both sides, in the senate race we see both candidates with more unfavorable views than favorable views.”
The independents can sway the outcome, and Franklin says voter turnout is the key — analysts and elections officials predict it will be high. Many voters are taking advantage of early in-person voting, which started on Monday, October 22 and ends this Friday.
In the final Marquette Law School Poll before Tuesday’s election, live individuals call users of both landlines and cell phones. It was conducted October 25-28. The November matchups, issues and candidate image questions are based on a sample of 1,243 likely voters and have a margin of error of +/- 2.8 percentage points.