LANSING, Mich., Sept. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- An already tight race for Michigan's 17 electoral votes between President George W. Bush and U.S. Senator John Kerry, the Democratic nominee, just got tighter. Kerry leads Bush by only two percentage points, his smallest edge in three months, and it appears the number of undecided voters may be expanding slightly. Kerry is ahead of Bush, 45%-43%, with only 1% for Ralph Nader. About 11% of the state's voters claim to be undecided, refused to answer whom they will vote for, or say they don't know (U/RtA/DK). Those are the conclusions of a statewide survey commissioned by Inside Michigan Politics and conducted by Lansing-based Marketing Resource Group, Inc., between Sept. 20 and 24. The poll sampled 600 registered voters stratified by city and/or township, based on past voting history. 36% of the respondents are behavioral Democrats; 30% behavioral Republicans; 27% are ticket-splitters; and about 7% refused to characterize their voting habits or had never voted before. Statistical margin of error is + or - 4.1%. MRG is the state's oldest and most reliable polling organization on Michigan issues and political races. Inside Michigan Politics, founded in 1987, is the largest-circulation bi-weekly, state-based political newsletter in North America. The race between Kerry and Bush in Michigan has closed within the past 10 days, headed into the candidates' first debate in Coral Gables, FL, this Thursday evening. Six weeks ago, Kerry boasted his biggest Michigan lead, 49%-42%, in the wake of the Democratic National Convention. Now, however, IMP/MRG and another survey taken by Fox News on Sept. 21-22 shows the race has tightened to a virtual draw. The survey also found that Michigan voters support both proposals that will be on the Nov. 2 general election ballot: 04-1, which would require that any new form of gambling in Michigan must be subject to approval by voters locally as well as statewide; and 04-2, which would effectively ban so-called "gay marriage" in the state. Voters favor Prop 04-1, 63%-27%, with about 10% U/RtA/DK; voters support Prop 04-2, 61%-33% (6% U/RtA/DK), which is an even greater margin than IMP/MRG found when essentially the same question was asked six months ago.
SOURCE Inside Michigan Politics