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Missouri 2012: Romney 45%, Obama 42%

So goes Missouri, so goes the nation. No state has supported the winner in more presidential elections than the Show Me State, and right now Mitt Romney is the only Republican presidential hopeful who leads President Obama among Missouri voters.

The first Rasmussen Reports Election 2012 survey of Likely Missouri Voters finds Romney with 45% support to the president’s 42%. Eight percent (8%) like some other candidate, and five percent  (5%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Obama edges former House Speaker Newt Gingrich 47% to 43%, with seven percent (7%) preferring another candidate and three percent (3%) undecided.

Georgia businessman Herman Cain, who now leads the other White House hopefuls in his party among Likely Republican Primary Voters, trails Obama by eight points in Missouri – 47% to 39%. Eleven percent (11%) favor another candidate, while three percent (3%) are undecided.

Missouri Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill runs essentially even with two Republican challengers – former State Treasurer Sarah Steelman and Congressman Todd Akin - in the first Rasmussen Reports look at her reelection bid in 2012.

Nationally, Romney remains in a dead heat with the president, while Gingrich and Cain are currently six and 11 points respectively behind Obama.  Romney is the GOP candidate voters consider the most qualified to be president and is seen as closer to the political mainstream than any of the other candidates for the White House, including Obama.

Just 10% of Missouri voters view the U.S. economy as good or excellent, while 60% regard it as poor.  Among voters who see the economy as poor, Romney earns 62% support, Gingrich 58% and Cain 52%.

Twenty-eight percent (28%) of all voters in the state feel the government bailouts of banks, auto insurance companies and insurance companies were good for the United States, but twice as many (56%) regard them as a bad move for the country. Pitted against the top three Republican candidates, Obama earns anywhere from 75% to 84% of the vote from those who like the bailouts. Fifty-five percent (55%) to 63% of those who think the bailouts were bad for the country favor the GOP hopefuls.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls).  Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

This Missouri survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted on November 9, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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