As Page noted, the Swing States Poll showed that women ages 18 to 49 surged during the past month for Obama. He drew 49 percent of them in late February but 61 percent in late March. Romney’s support among those same women plunged, going from 44 percent to 30 percent.
But if you look at the national Gallup poll numbers for women ages 18 to 49, in surveys conducted at virtually the same time as the February and March Swing States polls, you find that Obama’s numbers slipped — yes, slipped — by 4 points, from 59 percent in February to 55 percent in March. And Romney’s support among that same demographic group dropped by only a single point, from 37 percent to 36 percent.
In October, Gallup’s national poll found that Obama led Romney by 14 points among women (54 percent to 40 percent). That margin shrunk only slightly, to 12 points, in March. But among men, Romney’s 16-point advantage in October shrunk to just 3 points in March.
In Gallup/USA Today Swing States polling, among women, Obama drew 51 percent in October and 54 percent in March, a gain of 3 points. Romney, in contrast, lost 6 points during the same period, dropping from 42 percent to just 36 percent.
Clearly, Romney can’t win the White House if he is winning only 40 percent of female voters nationally or 36 percent of female voters from the 10 swing states. But it’s equally true that Romney can’t defeat Obama if the Republican carries men by only 3 points (as he does in Gallup’s most recent national poll) or by a single point (as he does in the most recent Swing States survey).