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Blue State Michigan Shifting to Romney?

Late last month, Public Policy Polling found President Obama with a strong 53-39 advantage against Mitt Romney in Michigan, which has been considered a fairly safe state for Democrats this election. But a new poll released today by EPIC-MRA shows the two candidates in a dead-heat, the Detroit Free Press reports (via HotAir):

The poll, released this morning to the Free Press and four TV stations, shows Romney leading Obama 46%-45%, a reversal from the last EPIC poll in April which showed Obama ahead 47%-43%.

Obama’s personal and job approval numbers also have slipped, with 46% of Michiganders saying they have a favorable opinion of the president, and 41% approving of the job he’s doing.

What changed?

The Free Press suggests that a flood of pro-Romney super PAC ads may be a culprit, but it’s likely the latest jobs numbers and poor economic news have also had an influence. Another 34 percent of respondents said that Obama’s position on gay marriage made them less likely to vote for him, but some of these may have been people who were not planning to vote for him in the first place.

Also note that the EPIC-MRA poll was conducted among likely voters, while the PPP poll was with registered voters, which may account for some of the discrepancy between the two. Even if that’s the case, there is still a large gulf, and it’s hard to know whether the EPIC-MRA numbers are the sign of a trend or an outlier until additional polls are released.