We haven’t usually been running forecast updates on the weekend, but a Florida poll will always get our attention. In this case, it’s a new poll from Mason-Dixon, released on Saturday, that shows President Obama with a nominal 1-percentage-point lead there over Mitt Romney.
Our model shows Florida as close as can be. It projects the Nov. 6 result as Mr. Obama 49.5 percent, Mr. Romney 49.4 percent — an outcome that would be close enough to trigger another recount.
Mr. Obama has led in the majority of Florida polls recently — five of seven since June 1. The model hedges against these polls a bit because Florida is normally a bit Republican-leaning and its economy is doing quite poorly. That’s how it gets a tie there.
Still, Mr. Obama’s polling in Florida seems to have improved by a percentage point or so since a couple of months ago, at a time when national polls have generally been quite steady. That has brought it a bit closer to the national average and increased its ranking on our list of tipping point states that are most likely to decide the election.