Washington Daybook: Oh, Oh, Ohio

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Supporters cheer during a campaign rally of Mitt Romney and his running mate Rep. Paul Ryan on Sept. 25, 2012 in Vandalia, Ohio.

Mitt Romney says his running mate, Paul Ryan, was angry that the Green Bay Packers lost this week on a disputed last-second desperation pass. Romney, campaigning in Ohio today, may need a Hail Mary pass of his own.

With 41 days before the election, Romney trails by 10 percentage points in Ohio, a must-have GOP state, by nine in Florida and by 12 in Pennsylvania, all results outside the margin for error, according to a CBS, NYT, Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Part of the reason for the poll may be signs that the struggling economy may be gaining traction. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Stock Index has risen 14.6 percent this year. Lower borrowing costs are boosting property sales, even as home prices rise. Purchases of new houses rose to a two-year high in August, the Commerce Department may report today, a Bloomberg survey found.

The Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of leading U.S. companies, will release the results of its latest outlook on economic conditions for the next six months, which may provide further clarity on the economy as Obama and Romney face off in Ohio today.

First up, Romney will tee off with gold legend Jack Nicklaus at an event in Westerville, Ohio. Later, the Obama and Romney campaigns have scheduled dual dueling appearances for the candidates at exactly the same time, 1:05 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., in different parts of the state.

One thing both candidates can agree on: NFL replacement refs stink. Both Romney and Obama said yesterday that they want the NFL to work out a deal with locked-out referees after a series of controversial calls in professional football games, as noted in Political Capital.

Back in Washington, the U.S. Geological Survey plans to release results today from groundwater tests in a Wyoming gas field where another federal agency linked hydraulic fracturing to contaminants found in two water wells, AP reports. The Food and Agriculture Organization holds a briefing on the state of world fisheries. And TeleCommunication Systems Inc., Northrop Grumman Corp., and Lockheed Martin Corp. unveil their new user terminal for secure military satellite communications in a briefing at the National Press Club.

Jim O’Connell contributed to this report.



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