What does this all mean? In the case of Ohio, it suggests there are basically two views of the race.
The first, shared by Rasmussen, Gravis, We Ask America, ARG, the Purple Strategies Poll, and the Ohio Newspapers Poll, shows something between a dead heat and an Obama lead of 1 point. The second view, shared by PPP, CBS, NBC, Time, and CNN, shows the president with a comfortable lead of 4 to 6 points. (Survey USA and Fox fall somewhere in the middle, and not coincidentally find a relatively large number of undecided voters.)
When you average out these two views, you get an Obama lead of 2 points – but that does not appear to be very meaningful, considering that just 2 of 25 polls in the last month have found him up by that margin!
Just like the difference between the state and national polls, they both cannot be right.