Women Give Obama Big Swing-State Lead
President beating Mitt Romney 51% to 42% in 12 battleground states
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Apr 2, 2012 7:48 AM CDT
US President Barack Obama smiles during a campaign event at the Southern Maine Community College in Portland, Maine, on March 30, 2012. Obama is on a day trip to Vermont and Maine to attend campaign events....   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – There's finally a clear leader in the 2012 race for the swing states: President Obama has a 51% to 42% advantage over Mitt Romney, according to the fifth USA Today/Gallup poll of the top 12 battleground states. The change from a month ago, when Romney was ahead by two points, comes thanks to Obama's big gain among women under 50. Less than half of that group preferred Obama in the last survey; now it's 60%; Romney has seen a 14-point plunge to 30% with that demographic.

Romney leads the president among men 50 and older, 56% to 38%, but that "won't be good enough if we're losing women by nine points or 10 points," says a GOP strategist. "The focus on contraception has not been a good one for us ... Republicans have unfairly taken on water on this issue." Among women of all ages in these states, Obama leads by 18 points; Romney leads among men by one point.