The Washington Times - July 3, 2012, 08:39AM

President Obama holds a 3-point overall lead over presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in a new poll released by CNN/ORC, though Mr. Romney holds a robust 51 percent to 43 percent lead among voters in 15 “battleground states.”

The president’s lead in the poll, conducted Thursday through Sunday — after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on Mr. Obama’s health care overhaul — is identical to his 49 percent to 46 percent lead last month, though it is down from the 11-point lead he enjoyed in March.

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Nevertheless, registered voters, by a 51 percent to 44 percent margin, say that Mr. Obama would better handle the issue of health care than Mr. Romney.

Interestingly, Mr. Obama holds a 15-point lead (55 percent to 40 percent) among self-identified moderates, while Mr. Romney holds a 7-point lead (49 percent to 42 percent) among independents.

Mr. Obama also appears to enjoy stronger support among his base than Mr. Romney. Liberals favor the president by an 85 percent to 9 percent split, while Mr. Romney held a slightly less robust 72 percent to 25 percent lead among conservatives.

Interviews with 1,517 adult Americans were conducted between June 28 and July 1. The margin of error for results based on the total sample, as well as the sample of 1,390 registered voters, is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

Results reported for “battleground states” include 582 respondents and 534 registered voters who live in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.