A new poll released this week shows Sen. John Kerry with a slight edge over President Bush among likely Oregon voters. Those same voters also appear to be leaning toward a ban on same-sex marriage in the state. The CNN-USA Today-Gallup poll, released Tuesday, found Kerry running ahead of Bush in the state, 53% to 45%. The survey of 700 likely voters was conducted between Friday and Monday and had a margin of error of four percentage points.
It is the latest entry in a flurry of polls being conducted in the battleground state. Portland pollster Mike Riley's survey, released Sunday, had Bush with a slight lead. Another poll of 600 Oregon voters released last week had Kerry with the edge. Both leads were within the margin of error.
Tracey Schmitt, a regional spokeswoman for the Bush-Cheney '04 campaign, said the latest poll was further evidence that Bush can win Oregon after narrowly losing the state's seven electoral votes in 2000. "Some polls have shown us up. Some polls have shown us down," Schmitt said. "We believe the president's pro-business agenda will resonate with Oregon voters." Scott Ballo, spokesman for America Coming Together, a group working for Kerry's election in Oregon, questioned the polls. "They are all over the map, so you don't know what the reality is," he said.
The CNN-USA Today-Gallup survey also found voters favoring a ban on same-sex marriage 50% to 42%. The highest level of opposition to Measure 36, which would amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage, was among people ages 18 to 34, voters in Multnomah County, and people living in other urban areas in the state. Measure 36 had its strongest support among men, people in rural areas, and people 55 and older.