In a UPI-CVoter poll released Saturday, Obama was preferred by 49 percent of the voters while 48 percent said they back Romney. Because of the 4.5 percentage point margin of error, results indicate the two are statistically tied.
In perception, however, Obama leads Romney by double digits, meaning "many Republican voters, too, believe Obama would win," CVoter pollster Yashwant Deshmukh said.
In 11 states UPI-CVoter considers battleground states, voter perception favors Obama over Romney 50 percent to 39 percent, regardless of who voters said they support.
Those UPI-CVoter battleground states are Colorado, Ohio, Iowa, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Hampshire, Florida, North Carolina, Michigan and Wisconsin.
Of the 11 states, voters in seven said they believed Obama would handily defeat Romney, including Ohio, where Obama leads Romney 48 percent to 47 percent in the voter preference poll, but is ahead 49 percent to 42 percent in voters' perception.
In Florida, North Carolina and New Hampshire, voters said they thought Romney would win the presidency.
Results are based on nationwide telephone interviews with 3,633 likely voters conducted Oct. 15-31. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points.