Santorum leads Romney in Ohio poll

Santorum and Romney CBS/AP

Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney
CBS/AP

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum has a small lead over rival Mitt Romney in the latest poll of likely Republican primary voters in Ohio.

Conducted by Quinnipiac University, the poll found Santorum leads the former Massachusetts governor 36 percent to 29 percent, though almost half of respondents said they could still change their mind ahead of the Buckeye state primary to be held in a little more than a week's time.

"While almost half the voters say they might change their mind, Santorum supporters seem a little surer of their vote," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

Brown noted that the results of the Michigan primary Tuesday could have an impact on Ohio's election a week later. Arizona also votes Tuesday before the ten contests on March 6, known collectively as "Super Tuesday."

Romney now has a slight lead over Santorum in Michigan, 39 percent to 37 percent, according to Public Policy Polling, a Democratic-leaning polling firm. The Michigan support is stronger for Romney than it was a week ago, while support for Santorum has remained about the same. Romney is widely expected to win Arizona, where he has consistently held a comfortable lead in a number of polls.

The Ohio Quinnipiac telephone poll of 847 likely Republican primary voters was conducted February 23 through 26 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

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