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Obama slips ahead of Romney in key polls. More than a bounce? (+video)

President Obama's post-convention poll bounce appears to be real. Some Romney supporters are worried, but he has two major advantages: an economy that continues to falter under Obama's watch and the ability to raise and spend money on campaign ads.

By Staff writer / September 9, 2012

President Obama met customers outside the Ossorio Bakery and Cafe before he went inside to eat breakfast with seniors while campaigning in Cocoa, Fla., Sunday, Sept. 9.

Larry Downing/REUTERS

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He may have taken a political and psychological whack from Friday’s dismal employment numbers and the less-than-rave reviews for his convention speech, but President Obama is increasing his advantage over Mitt Romney in the presidential race.

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Mr. Obama is inching ahead in the polls – apparently building on a post-convention “bounce” that eluded Mr. Romney a week earlier.

Weekend polls where Obama is gaining include Gallup, Reuters/Ipsos, and Rasmussen. The differences between the two candidates are small here – single digits – but the trend at this point is in Obama’s direction.

“The question now is not whether Mr. Obama will get a bounce in the polls, but how substantial it will be,” writes statistician and poll watcher Nate Silver on his New York Times FiveThirtyEight blog. “Some of the data, in fact, suggests that the conventions may have changed the composition of the race, making Mr. Obama a reasonably clear favorite as we enter the stretch run of the campaign.”

Obama vs. Romney 101: Where are the sharpest divides?

Ipsos also shows Obama increasing his lead over Romney in certain favorable characteristics.  He’s “more eloquent” by 50 percent to 25 percent, and he’s ahead of Romney in being “smart enough for the job” (46 percent to 37 percent).  Obama leads Romney in a dozen such favorable characteristics, Ipsos reports, including “represents America” and “has the right values.” The one such category where Romney is ahead is in being “a man of faith.”

"The bump is actually happening,” Ipsos pollster Julia Clark told Reuters. “I know there was some debate whether it would happen … but it's here.”

The next major event in the race will be Oct. 3 in Denver, when Romney and Obama debate domestic policy. Until then, the campaign just keeps escalating in intensity as each side looks for daily pressure points.

On Sunday, it was Romney’s chance to show his stuff in a non-Fox News media venue – NBC’s “Meet the Press.” Down in the battleground state of Florida, Obama was touting a study showing that Medicare recipients would have to spend a lot more on health care under the Romney/Ryan plan.

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