Nov 02, 2012 11:00 AM EDT
With only four days before the next United States president is elected, the focus of pollsters and campaign staffers is focused squarely on a handful of key swing states that could ultimately decide the outcome of the election.
According to The Huffington Post's Electoral College map projection, which is based on an analysis of various nationwide and state by state polling data, the six states still in the toss up pile as of Friday are Colorado, Florida, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia.
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Those states represent a total of 88 electoral votes - a hefty sum considering each candidate needs a total of 270 electoral votes to successfully win the election. That sum would be incredibly valuable to either candidate, based on The Huffington Post's current projection, which has President Barack Obama at 259 electoral votes and Mitt Romney at 206 votes.
Perhaps the most talked about swing state this election cycle has been Ohio, which many pundits have said will be a must-win for both Obama and Romney in order for either candidate to win the White House on Nov. 6. The Buckeye State offers 18 electoral votes to whichever candidate can carry the state on Election Night.
According to The Huffington Post's data analysis, the advantage in Ohio is currently in the Democratic camp. President Obama is polling at 49 percent in the state, while Republican nominee Romney lags behind by three percentage points at 46 percent.
Data from national polling firm Rasmussen tells a slightly different story.
In that poll, Romney is ahead with support from 50 percent of voters surveyed in Ohio, while Obama has support from 48 percent. Of the remaining respondents included in the poll, 1 percent of voters plan to vote for a different candidate, and another 1 percent are still undecided about how they will cast their vote on Nov. 6.
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