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FORUM POLL: Romney set for North Dakota landslide

FARGO - Republican Mitt Romney is shown defeating President Barack Obama 57 percent to 32 percent in a new poll for Forum Communications.

Even if Obama managed to capture all of the undecided votes in North Dakota - which almost always votes Republican in presidential elections - the president still would lag behind Romney, according to the poll.

If the poll margin of 25 percentage points holds, Obama will finish with significantly less support in North Dakota than he did in 2008 as a newcomer to national elections.

Obama lost North Dakota to the Republican nominee, Arizona Sen. John McCain, 45 percent to 53 percent in 2008 but carried 10 of the state's 53 counties, including Cass and Grand Forks.

Romney is shown beating Obama in all seven counties highlighted in the statewide telephone poll, which surveyed 500 likely voters Oct. 12 to 15.

In Cass County, Romney appears to have a slight lead over Obama, 47 percent to 46 percent, within the poll's margin of error. In Grand Forks County, Romney leads 46 percent to 38 percent, with 14 percent of voters remain undecided.

The Republican, a former governor of Massachusetts, had especially strong leads in Burleigh, Stark, Stutsman, Ward and Williams counties - though only the results in Ward and Burleigh counties had large enough samples to be statistically significant.

Romney was favored by an overwhelming 94 percent of respondents in Stark County, which includes Dickinson.

In Stutsman County, which includes Jamestown, Romney was up 56 percent to 38 percent.

Not surprisingly, Romney was the overwhelming favorite of Republican voters, where he draws 94 percent, according to the poll. He also leads among independent voters, 50 percent to 32 percent. Sixteen percent of independents were undecided.

Romney's support is solid among all demographic groups in North Dakota, according to the poll.

The Republican is favored by both men and women, with a distinct advantage among male voters, where he draws 62 percent. Among female voters polled, Romney was up 52 percent to 34 percent.

Romney's support is 55 percent or better among each age group, spanning ages 18 to 65 and over.

Republican George W. Bush drew more than 60 percent of the vote in his two presidential runs in North Dakota.

In 2004, against Democrat John Kerry, Bush won with 63 percent. In 2000, against Democrat Al Gore, Bush won 61 percent.

The last Democrat to carry North Dakota in a presidential election was Lyndon Johnson in 1964, with 58 percent against Republican Barry Goldwater.