PPP's newest Ohio poll finds Barack Obama leading Mitt Romney 51-47, up from a 49-48 margin a week ago.
It's starting to look like Obama might have turned the corner with his wins in the second and third debates. When asked who they think won the debates as a whole Obama wins out 45/43, suggesting he really fixed his problems from the first debate with the second two. Obama's approval is on positive ground at 51/48, while Romney's favorability is in negative territory at 47/51. Ohioans trust Obama over Romney on both the economy (52/46) and foreign policy (54/44).
Obama's built up a big lead among early voters in the state. 36% say they've already cast their ballots and they report having voted for Obama by a 63/36 margin. Romney's up 53/45 with those yet to vote.
The main shift from a week ago is Democrats further unifying around Obama as the election nears. Last week he led 86/14 with them in the state and now he's pushed that up further to 88/10. Romney continues to lead with independents, 50/46, but that's down a tick from 49/42 last week.
Obama's lead in Ohio comes thanks to big advantages among women (55/43), African Americans (86/12), and young voters (60/36). Romney's winning with men (52/46), whites (52/46), and seniors (54/45) but he would need to win those groups, particularly whites and men, by considerably wider margins if he was going to take the state.
The Senate race really appears to be getting away from Josh Mandel in the closing stages. Sherrod Brown's opened up a 53/42 lead. Brown's winning independents 48/44 even as Obama loses them, and he has 89% of Democrats lined up behind him while only 81% of Republicans are committed to Mandel. Brown's approval is on slightly positive ground at 47/44, while Mandel continues to be very unpopular with only 38% of voters seeing him favorably to 51% with a negative opinion.
Two other notes from Ohio:
-There's no enthusiasm gap in the state. 69% of Democrats say they're 'very excited' to vote and 68% of Republicans do.
-Democrats lead the generic Congressional ballot in the state 50/42.
Full results here