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Latest Quinnipiac Poll Continues to Show Virginia Is Top Battleground

A new Quinnipiac University Polling Institute survey in Virginia confirmed yet again that the state will be a battleground on both the presidential and Senate levels.

The new poll found that former Govs. George Allen (R) and Tim Kaine (D) remained neck and neck in the race for the state’s open Senate seat, while President Barack Obama was statistically tied with Mitt Romney, the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.

Kaine took 45 percent to Allen’s 44 percent, matching the 1-point margin the polling institute found in its last two surveys of the race in June and September. The race is expected to be a dead heat through next fall.

The two also had nearly identical favorable ratings: 45 percent held a favorable opinion of Allen compared to 28 percent who saw him unfavorably. Kaine received a 47 percent favorable and 29 percent unfavorable rating.

Obama’s approval rating, now 45 percent, got a small boost after taking a hit in last month’s poll. Still troubling for the president, however, is that fewer independents, who swing Virginia’s statewide elections, approve of him (38 percent) in the state than in the overall electorate.

There was big movement in the Republican presidential primary, with Texas Gov. Rick Perry dropping from 25 percent last month to just 11 percent in the latest poll. Businessman Herman Cain shot up from 6 percent to 21 percent, tying Romney for the lead.

In general election polling, Romney took 45 percent to 44 percent for Obama, Obama led Perry 47 percent to 42 percent, and Obama took 45 percent to Cain’s 43 percent.

The poll of 1,459 registered voters was conducted Oct. 3-9 and carried a 2.6-point margin of error. For GOP primary polling, Quinnipiac surveyed 345 self-identified Republicans Oct. 5-9, with a 5.3-point margin of error.

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