USA Today/Gallup swing state poll: Romney up 5%

According to a poll released today by USA Today/Gallup, Romney has pulled ahead by an astonishing 5%. This is encouraging, however what is more impressive is how that lead was generated. Looking within the internal structure of the pole, women favor Romney at an equal level to Pres. Obama. Usually, women favor Democrats by as much as 10% to 12%, so having an even split amongst the female going block is remarkable.

“In every poll, we’ve seen a major surge among women in favorability for Romney” since his strong performance in the first debate, veteran Democratic pollster Celinda Lake says. “Women went into the debate actively disliking Romney, and they came out thinking he might understand their lives and might be able to get something done for them.”

While Lake believes Obama retains an edge among women voters, the changed views of Romney could be “a precursor to movement” to the Republican candidate, she says. “It opens them up to take a second look, and that’s the danger for Obama.”

Female voters are a critical part of the president’s coalition. Four years ago, he led Republican rival John McCain by a single point among men, according to surveys of voters as they left polling places. The decisive Democratic margin of victory came from women, who supported Obama by 13 points.

Now, the USA TODAY/Gallup Poll shows Romney leading Obama 51%-46% among likely voters in the swing states. Men who are likely voters back him 54%-42%. The states are Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.