President Obama is leading Mitt Romney by 6 points in Nevada and Sen. Dean Heller has a 1-point lead over Rep. Shelley Berkley, according to a new poll taken over the weekend.
The survey, conducted by Democratic pollster Lisa Grove for Project New America/US Action, was of 500 likely voters on Saturday and Sunday. The margin of error is 4.4 percentage points. (I have seen the poll but was not given permission to post it.)
Obama is up 49 percent to 43 percent in the survey. Among the 23 percent who answered they had voted early, Obama has an 8 percentage point edge. (The Democratic statewide edge in early/mail ballots is about 8 percentage points.)
Obama is leading Romney among independents in the poll by 51 percent to 40 percent. If that sub-group number is accurate, Romney is dead in Nevada.
In the U.S. Senate race, Heller is up, 44 percent to 43 percent. Among those who have voted early, Berkley leads, 45-43. If this is true, it's going to be a long night Tuesday. Recount anyone?
A couple of notes on the sample for Republicans already wailing this is a Democratic poll:
The partisan breakdown is: 36 percent of the sample are registered Republicans, 42 percent are registered Democrats, and 23 percent are not affiliated with either party. The Democrats actually have a 7 percent registration lead, so this assumes a slight GOP turnout advantage. Looks as if they will need a much bigger one to turn these numbers around.
Grove also has only 12 percent Hispanics in the mix. That would seem to be a low estimate. I have heard some pessimistic Democrats say it may not get to 15 percent again, but it's hard to argue that 12 percent is anything but a very conservative estimate.
Bottom line: Grove has done work in Nevada and knows the state. While any pollster can produce bad data, if this one is right, there is almost no way for Romney to win Nevada.