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Inside Politics

Poll: Presidential race too close to call in 3 states

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CNN's Bill Schneider on the political battle lines in New York.
America Votes 2004
George W. Bush
John F. Kerry
• The Candidates: Bush | Kerry

(CNN) -- A CNN/USA Today/Gallup telephone survey released Sunday indicates that voters in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Iowa are pretty evenly split on who they want in the White House, the economy, and the war in Iraq.

The three are among about a dozen states considered too close to call in the presidential contest. The list also includes Ohio, Florida, Nevada, Missouri, and Minnesota.

Registered voters polled in Wisconsin put Democrat John Kerry ahead of President George W. Bush -- 49 to 46 percent, but 50 percent of likely voters in the state said they would vote for Bush versus 47 percent giving the nod to Kerry. The sampling error was plus-or-minus 5 percentage points in both categories.

In Pennsylvania, registered voters gave Kerry-Edwards a 5 percentage-point margin over Bush-Cheney -- 49 to 44 percent -- with a sampling error of plus-or-minus 4 points. Among likely voters polled in Pennsylvania, Bush and Cheney narrowly led Kerry and Edwards -- 48 to 47 percent -- with an error margin of plus-or-minus 5 percentage points.

Half of registered voters surveyed in Iowa said they would vote for the Kerry-Edwards ticket versus 44 percent who said they would vote for the Bush-Cheney ticket. Pollsters said the margin of sampling error was plus-or-minus 4 percentage points.

Likely voters polled in Iowa gave Kerry-Edwards 51 percent of the vote and Bush-Cheney 46 percent, with a plus-or-minus 5 percentage point margin of error.

Registered voters and likely voters polled in those states were nearly evenly split on other issues as well. Thirty-nine percent of likely voters and of registered voters in Iowa rated their state's economy as "good."

Thirty-six percent of Pennsylvania's likely voters said their state's economy was "good" -- just two percentage points ahead of what Pennsylvania's registered voters told pollsters.

Likely voters polled in Wisconsin also edged out registered voters in their optimism about the state's economy. Forty-three percent said the economy was "good," while 41 percent of registered voters agreed.

The question of whether the United States erred in sending troops to Iraq also drew a fairly even split.

Forty-six percent of Wisconsin's registered voters said the U.S. should not have sent troops to Iraq and 45 percent of likely voters agreed.

Fifty percent of Pennsylvania's registered voters and 47 percent of likely voters said it was a mistake.

Forty-six percent of likely voters in Iowa answered "yes" to that question as did 45 percent of registered voters there.

The survey was conducted Aug. 23 through 26.

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