- (Photo: Reuters/Lucas Jackson)
A number of the latest presidential polls show President Obama and Republican rival Mitt Romney tied in the extremely close race for the White House. However, the latest Gallup poll released Friday afternoon shows Romney still with a six point lead over the president, following Thursday's poll that showed his lead at seven points.
The large Romney lead was revealed just as President Obama finally admitted more openly Thursday that his administration had "screwed up" in the handling of the U.S. Consulate attack in Libya, which resulted in the deaths of the U.S. ambassador and three of his American colleagues.
Speaking on "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" Obama said, "Here's what I have to say: If four Americans got killed it is not optimal. And we are going to fix it, all of it. And what happens during the course of a presidency, you know the government is a big operation at any given time, something screws up and you make sure you find out what's broken and you fix it."
According to the daily Gallup poll on Thursday Romney had a lead of seven points, taking 52 percent of those polled on a national level, against Obama's 45 percent. That equated to the largest margin for Romney in the campaign so far. By Friday afternoon that lead was similar but down to six points as Romney scores 51 percent compared to Obama's 45 percent from the Gallup poll data released at 1 p.m. ET Friday.
The Gallup poll appears to show that Romney has managed to take a good portion of the undecided voters in the past few weeks, and that could prove critical in deciding the outcome of the election.
However, some analysts have been surprised at the poll and Romney lead, and have questioned its accuracy. They point to the fact that most other polls show the two candidates in a tie, suggesting the contest is much closer than the Gallup poll would indicate.
"That's the wildest margin anyone has gotten," Marist College pollster Lee Miringoff stated to the Daily News.
However, he described that the Gallup poll uses a sophisticated formula that specifically focuses on swing voters who are likely to change the results; so the Gallup poll could be more indicative than others.
The Gallup poll was taken over the course of the seven days preceding Wednesday, with the poll results released on Thursday. So that also would mean the poll only included one day of data since the second presidential debate in which Obama fought back following his passive first debate display.
Meanwhile two other polls released on Thursday night had Obama maintaining leads in two of the key swing states. A joint poll of NBC News, the Wall Street Journal and Marist College found Obama leading by 51 to 43 percent in Iowa, and 51 to 45 percent in Wisconsin.
The final presidential debate will take place Monday, Oct. 22, at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla., at 9 p.m. ET.