After the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, President Barack Obama now leads in almost every major poll. The leads vary from 2 to 6 points, but there is no doubt that he emerged from the convention with a bounce. For my part, I really didn't think this would be a big bounce year, but my own poll, done by JZ Analytics, has Obama leading former Governor Mitt Romney 48% to 42%. That poll of 1019 likely voters nationwide reveals how close the President is coming to solidifying key portions of his base - but it also shows the work that remains to be done by each candidate if they hope to win on November 6.

I am mainly on the road giving speeches and this past week the most frequent question was whether or not the "election is already over". Of course, it is not over. There is a lot of campaigning to go, lots of money, and as we are presently witnessing, lots of global uncertainty that can insinuate itself into the situation. I just want to review what my most recent poll shows about the key demographics I am watching.

President Barack Obama is about where he needs to be among several key groups: Democrats (he leads 87% to 5%), 30-49 year olds (53% to 38%), 50-64 year olds (47% to 43%), Hispanics (71% to 21%), African Americans (87% to 2%), Catholics (47% to 43%), and single voters (59% to 27%). He even is outperforming his 2008 showing among some conservative-leaning groups: Weekly Wal-Mart Shoppers (45% to Romney's 48%), Evangelicals (32% to Romney's 57%), NASCAR Fans (44% to 43%), and married voters (43% to Romney's 48%).

The President leads but is under-performing among 18-29 year olds (53% to 36%), a group that gave him 66% of their vote in 2008, and the Creative Class (53% to 39%)

Former Governor Mitt Romney meanwhile is simply not where he needs to be among most must-win groups. He does lead among Republicans 87% to 7%, but he is clearly not in a solid position among voters over 65 (just 53% to Obama's 37%), white voters (52% to 38%) and groups mentioned above who normally vote Republican.

If the election were held today, Obama would win. But, of course, the election is on November 6 - a long way to go. Here is a guide for the next few weeks:

1. Watch the minor party candidates - especially the Libertarian Gary Johnson, Green Party Dr. Jill Stein and Constitution Party Virgil Goode. When I add them to the horse race question, they siphon off 5 points and the President's lead widens over Governor Romney. They will not be in the debates but they have some appeal to younger voters (in the cases of Johnson and Stein), and to very conservative voters (in the case of Goode).

2. You will see Romney continue to hammer his neo-conservative foreign policy because the groups it appeals to most are those he needs to win - voters over 65 (who are the one group who most endorse "American Exceptionalism"), evangelicals (he is 13 points behind where he should be and 11% are still undecided), and NASCAR fans, who want a strong military.

3. Romney is only leading among the Investor Class by 3 points. He will try to assure them that his hand is steadier and more trustworthy.

4. For the President's part, "no runs, no hits, no errors" from here on in. He has made his case in Charlotte and it has worked so far. Barring a worsening of things in Europe and the Middle East, he just has to play defense and hold on to the ball (switching my metaphors to cover everything but hockey!)

The President has improved his job rating to 51%, his re-elect to 46%, and the numbers of those who feel the country is headed in the wrong direction (down to 54%). Perhaps a serious gaffe or a horrible crisis will keep him from re-election. For now, Romney is clearly on the ropes.