New poll: Pres. Obama 46%, Mitt Romney 43% in Florida

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Mitt Romney/President Barack Obama

Mitt Romney/President Barack Obama

(CNN) — On the eve of the first presidential debate, a new poll indicates a close contest between President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney in the race for Florida’s 29 electoral votes.

According to a Suffolk University/WSVN-Miami survey released Tuesday, 46% of Sunshine State likely voters say they are supporting the president, with 43% backing Romney and seven-percent undecided. Obama’s three-point margin is within the survey’s sampling error.

The Suffolk poll was conducted September 27-30, and is the sixth non-partisan, live operator survey of likely voters in Florida conducted over the past two weeks. The others are Quinnipiac University/CBS News/New York Times (Sept. 18-24); Mason Dixon (Sept. 17-19); Washington Post (Sept. 19-23); American Research Group (Sept. 20-22) and Fox News (Sept. 16-18).

The margin in the Suffolk survey is closer than in all but one of the other five polls. A CNN Poll of Polls which averages all six surveys puts Obama at 50% and Romney at 45%.

President George W. Bush carried Florida in his 2004 re-election, but Obama turned Florida from red to blue four years ago.

The Suffolk poll was released one day before the first presidential debate, which will be held Wednesday in Denver. The survey indicates that Floridians by a more than two to one margin think Obama is the better debater.

In the state’s U.S. Senate contest, the survey indicates Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson with a 40%-34% advantage over Republican Rep. Connie Mack, with one in five undecided. Nelson’s edge over Mack is smaller in the Suffolk poll than in most other recent surveys.

The Suffolk University/WSVN-Miami poll was conducted by telephone with 600 likely voters in Florida questioned. The survey’s sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.-