Unemployment dropped in all but two presidential battleground states last month, according to new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In New Hampshire and Virginia, the rate stayed the same. All but one battleground (New Hampshire) has seen its unemployment rate drop over the past year.
BLS today released preliminary state numbers that will be revised, meaning small changes could conceivably reverse when BLS reexamines them. See all states here.
President Obama leads most battleground states according to the latest polls from NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist and CBS/New York Times/Quinnipiac. Some states have not been polled by those outlets since September, but the latest numbers are linked to the right of states below. As Mitt Romney has surged nationally after his strong performance in the first presidential debate, some figures below predate a shift in opinion nationwide, and it has yet to be determined if that shift occurred in these states.
State Aug. Sept. 1-yr change Last Poll CO 8.2% 8.0% -.2% R +1 FL 8.8% 8.7% -1.7% O +1 IA 5.5% 5.2% -.7% O +8 NV 12.1% 11.8% -1.8% O +2 NH 5.7% 5.7% +.3% O +7 NC 9.7% 9.3% -.9% O +2 OH 7.2% 7.0% -1.6% O +6 VA 5.9% 5.9% -.4% R+1/O+5 WI 7.5% 7.3% -.1% O +6
ABC News rates Michigan and Pennsylvania as solidly blue. On the trend, they split:
MI 9.4% 9.3% -.9% PA 8.1% 8.2% +.2%
Nevada, Michigan, and North Carolina retain the worst unemployment rates of any state listed above. Nevada, which rated first in foreclosures per home unit throughout the housing crisis, has suffered the worst economy of any competitive battleground state.