(NEW YORK) — President Obama on Wednesday surveyed the devastation wreaked by the superstorm Sandy with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in what both men say was a non-political event, but was a powerful image of bipartisan cooperation just six days before the election.
Obama was greeted on the tarmac by Christie, a vocal supporter of Obama’s challenger Mitt Romney, and the two men boarded the president’s Marine One helicopter to assess the damage along the battered New Jersey shore.
Together the two men cut an image of bipartisanship and cooperation ahead of next week’s vote, as polls show the race in a dead heat nationally.
New polls in three key swing states show Obama holding his lead in Ohio and wiping away Romney’s advantage in Virginia and Florida. Obama leads 49 percent to 47 percent in Virginia and had a 48 percent to 47 percent edge in Florida, according to the Quinnipiac University/New York Times/CBS News poll.
Obama’s lead in those two states are within the margin of error, meaning the candidates are essentially tied, but Republican rival Mitt Romney was leading in those states just a few days ago in other polls.
In Ohio, Obama is maintaining a five point lead with a 50-45 margin, according to Quinnipiac.
In a new video Wednesday, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said he thinks Obama is in the dominant position heading into Election Day because, “We are ahead or tied in every single battleground state.”
But the Romney campaign disputed the results of the Quinnipiac surveys, claiming that it overestimates the size of the Democratic turnout.
Ohio, Virginia and Florida are among the most vital of the battleground states for both campaigns.
This is the first major poll of the swing states released since superstorm Sandy made landfall Monday evening, wreaking billions of dollars in damage and delivering an October Surprise that no pundit had predicted. The polls, however, were taken before Sandy arrived and may have altered voter attitudes towards the candidates.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Scott Stuntz, Teton Valley News
Stephan Rockefeller, EastIdahoNews.com