TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Democrat John Kerry leads President Bush 47 percent to 41 percent among registered voters in Florida, according to a poll released on Thursday that showed independent Ralph Nader with 4 percent.
In a two-way race, Kerry leads Bush 49 percent to 42 percent, according to the poll of 1,092 registered Florida voters conducted last week by the Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. The poll's error margin was three percentage points.
Among independent voters in the key battleground state, 51 percent supported Kerry while 34 percent said they would vote for Bush and 12 percent were undecided.
A similar poll taken in late June before the Democratic convention showed Bush and Kerry tied at 43 percent among registered voters, with Kerry then holding a 12-point lead over Bush among independent voters.
The poll showed most Florida voters have already made up their minds, with only 12 percent saying they might change their choice in the weeks ahead.
In 2000, Bush defeated Democratic challenger Al Gore by 537 votes in Florida after a lengthy court fight in which Democrats said the votes of many of their supporters were not counted.
Only 47 percent of respondents in the recent poll said they were very satisfied that their vote would be counted correctly this time, and only one in five said they were very confident the new touch-screen technology would alleviate Florida's election woes.
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