According to the latest Rasmussen poll released this morning, John Kasich now only leads by a statistically insignificant 48% to 45% three weeks from the end of voting according to its likely voter model.

As a result Rasmussen has moved the race on its scorecard from “Leaning Republican” to “Tossup.”  Two weeks ago, Rasmussen showed the race as 50% to 42%.

There is reason to believe that the poll is not just statistical noise, either.

Two weeks ago, Rasmussen claimed that Kasich had a lead with independents by thirty points.  Today?

“The Republican hopeful has a five-point edge among voters not affiliated with either of the major parties.”

Independents have started to switch from backing Kasich to backing Strickland, en masse.

Because of the poll’s 4% margin of error,Rasmussen would indicate that the race is virtually tied.   This is the second poll released this week showing Strickland at or above 45%.  Yesterday, Angus-Reid poll also showed a 48% to 46% race (they also misspelled Fisher’s name.)  The last Reuters poll and the Ohio Poll (considered by most political observers to be the Gold Standard of public opinion polling in Ohio) have also shown Strickland at or above 45%.

More importantly, the race is showing clear momentum with Strickland continuing to bleed away Kasich support with a five-point swing in only fourteen days.