Reporting Tim Kephart
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – For Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney to capture the presidency, winning the Sunshine State will be crucial. But the latest polling from Fox News is not painting a positive picture for Romney.
According to the Fox News Poll, Romney is trailing President Barack Obama in Florida by a 49-44 percent margin. The poll is the latest to show Obama near or above the magic 50 percent number.
Republican Senatorial candidate Representative Connie Mack IV also received a dose of bad news in the poll. According to the Fox poll, Mack IV is currently trailing Senator Bill Nelson by 14 points, 49-35 percent.
President Obama also leads Romney by seven points in both Ohio and Virginia, according to the Fox News polling. If Obama maintains those leads in the three critical swing states, Romney has virtually no road through the Electoral College to win the presidency.
The Fox poll found that Obama was above 50 percent in nearly every major issue in the race, except the issue of improving the economy and creating jobs, where the president was at 49 percent to Romney’s 46 percent.
Fox News also found that Floridians give Obama a 52-45 percent job approval rating. That’s a sharp contrast from the way likely voters in Florida feel about Governor Rick Scott. The governor was 10 points underwater, with 39 percent approving of his job performance to 49 percent disapproval.
Still, while polling has been trending towards President Obama since the Democratic National Convention, there are three nationally televised debates plus plenty of other opportunities for either candidate to trip up over the next roughly 47 days of the campaign.