President Obama received a significant increase in support following the two national conventions, according to portions of a new CBS News/New York Times poll released early on Friday, and the president now has a slight edge among likely voters in the race against Republican Mitt Romney.
Prior to the conventions, Obama held a scant, one-point lead over Romney among all registered voters, 46 percent to 45 percent. In the new poll, conducted Sept. 8-12, Obama leads among registered voters by 8 points, 51 percent to 43 percent, the first time he has exceeded 50 percent in the poll.
But among those voters considered likely to cast ballots, Obama's lead is smaller, 49 percent to 46 percent. Four percent of likely voters are undecided.
Among likely voters, each candidate wins more than 90 percent of his own partisans, while independents break for Romney, 51 percent to 40 percent. Romney leads by 8 points among men, 52 percent to 44 percent, but Obama leads by 12 points among female voters, 53 percent to 41 percent.
Romney runs surprisingly strong among young voters, trailing Obama by just 8 points among voters under age 30, 53 percent to 45 percent. In 2008, Obama defeated Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., among these voters by a more-than-2-to-1 margin, 66 percent to 32 percent, according to exit polls.
But Obama holds similar, single-digit leads among voters between 30 and 64, running stronger than he did in 2008. Seniors, those aged 65 and older, favor Romney, 53 percent to 38 percent, better than McCain's 8-point win among this group four years ago.
Among white voters who have graduated college, the candidates run neck-and-neck: 50 percent for Romney, 47 percent for Obama. That is virtually identical to McCain's 4-point win among this group in 2008. Among whites without college degrees, Romney leads, 57 percent to 37 percent; McCain won these voters in 2008 by a similar margin, 58 percent to 40 percent.
The poll surveyed 1,170 registered voters and 1,162 likely voters. The margin of error for each sample is plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.
CBS News and the Times say they will release full results from the poll on Friday evening.