President George W. Bush and John Kerry (search) are tied among likely New Jersey voters for the state's 15 electoral votes, according to a new poll.

Forty-eight percent of the likely and undecided voters leaning toward a candidate polled by Quinnipiac University said they support the president or the Democrat. Two percent favored Ralph Nader.

Kerry was slightly ahead in the same survey among Garden State registered voters polled, 47 to 43 percent. The Massachusetts senator had a 10-point lead among registered voters polled by Quinnipiac in August before the Republican National Convention.

Kerry lost a double-digit lead over Bush in New Jersey and was nearly tied with the GOP incumbent in a Star-Ledger/Eagleton-Rutgers Poll released earlier this month. Bush, coming off his party's national convention, slashed Kerry's lead among Garden State voters to 4 percentage points.

Kerry had a 20-point lead over Bush in a Star-Ledger survey after the Democratic National Convention in July.

New Jersey voters questioned by Quinnipiac said Bush would do a better job on terrorism, which respondents said was the most important issue in the presidential race. Kerry got higher marks for handling the economy.

By a 55 to 40 percent margin, Garden State respondents said it was wrong for the U.S. to go to war in Iraq.

The survey of 943 registered voters had a sampling error of 3.2 percentage points. Among 672 likely voters, the sampling error was 3.8 percentage points.