President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One...

President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One before his departure from JFK International airport in New York. (July 30, 2012) Credit: AP

At a $40,000-a-plate fundraiser in midtown Manhattan last night, President Barack Obama predicted a tight election against a well-financed Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, but still liked his chances at winning a second term.

"If the election were held today it would be close, but I think we'd win," Obama told a group of 60 supporters gathered at the upscale NoMad Hotel in the Flatiron District. The fundraiser was expected to generate $2.4 million for the president.

A poll released Monday by the national polling firm Rasmussen Reports, showed that Mitt Romney led among surveyed voters 47 percent to Obama's 44 percent. Five percent preferred another candidate, and four percent responded undecided. However, the president still holds a lead over Romney in 10 of the 12 key battleground states, where the election this fall will likely be decided.

The president said his campaign was being largely outspent by free-spending political action committees, known as super PACS.

"We don't anticipate that we're going to match them dollar for dollar, we don't need to, but are going to have to make sure we get our message out effectively," Obama said.

His remarks came as federal campaign reports show Romney leading in fundraising on Long Island.

From January 2011 through the end of June this year, Romney has raised $3.4 million to Obama's $3.2 million on Long Island, according to a Newsday analysis of federal campaign reports.

Romney is also counting on $2.4 million in Long Island donations to Restore Our Future, a super PAC supporting his bid for the White House. Priorities USA, a super PAC supporting Obama, raised $11,200 on Long Island during that same period.

Obama added that his campaign would increase efforts to outline specific policy initiatives under a second term so that voters not only "know what they're voting against but what they're voting for."

The president touched upon some of the "unfinished business" of his administration saying "if we can position ourselves on education and science and technology, on energy and a few other pieces of unfinished business like comprehensive immigration reform, there's no reason America should not thrive."

Obama's latest fundraising swing through New York comes after a June 14 fundraising dinner held at the West Village home of actress Sarah Jessica Parker that also cost $40,000 a head.

--With Tom Brune

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