Poll shows Obama, Romney in statistical dead heat in Michigan; state called 'purple'

According to poll, Michigan could be pivotal state for Obama, Romney in upcoming election race

Author: Mara MacDonald, Local 4 Reporter, @MaraMacDonald
Published On: Jun 20 2012 10:59:25 PM EDT
TROY, Mich. -

According to poll numbers released by Mitchell Research, President Barack Obama has a 1 percent lead over Mitt Romney in Michigan.

Mitchell has Obama at 47 percent and Romney at 46 percent of the state's votes. The snapshot of the tri-county area, excluding Detroit, shows Romney in the lead with 53 percent to Obama’s 47 percent.

Read: Mitchell Research Michigan poll

Pollster Steve Mitchell says in this election year it will be up to independent voters to determine whose win column Michigan will be in.

"I think this will be a battleground state. I think it is a purple state. It leans a little to the left but this election will be competitive here," said Mitchell.

Related: Poll shows majority of Michigan female voters support Obama

Independent voters rule Michigan

What’s a purple state? It's a state where independent voters rule the day. Mitchell predicts it will be independent voters that put Michigan in the win column for either candidate.

The telephone poll was a sample of 750 likely voters statewide. Where does Romney really need to get to work if he's going to flip what was assumed to be a safe state for President Obama? Mitchell says out-state. The margin there has Romney at 47 percent to Obama’s 45 percent.

Romney is currently on a bus tour in Michigan, spending a considerable time outside of Metro Detroit.

-- Mitt Romney has spent the week campaigning in Michigan, in places such as DeWitt.