Voters in 12 critical swing states would split their vote between Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney, according to a new USA Today/Gallup poll. But Obama would beat any of the other Republican candidates, with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich losing by the largest margin.
The poll found that Romney would beat Obama among registered voters in the swing states, 48 percent to 47 percent. Obama would beat Gingrich, 54 percent to 40 percent. Both Texas Representative Ron Paul and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum would lose to Obama by 7 points.
The poll could help Romney argue that he is the most electable of the four remaining GOP candidates. Romney and Obama have been closely matched in three swing-state polls since October, according to Gallup.
The poll was conducted Jan. 24-28 among 737 voters in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin. It has a margin of error of 5 percent.
Shira Schoenberg can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @shiraschoenberg.