WASHINGTON - U.S. presidential hopeful Mitt Romney has sailed ahead of rival Republican candidates nationally but still trails President Barack Obama in the White House race, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll on Tuesday.
Thirty percent of Republicans in the poll would vote for Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, compared to 18 percent a month ago.
His closest rival in the poll was Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives, who had 20 percent support, down from 28 percent in December.
Obama, a Democrat, leads all of the Republican candidates in the race. The steadying economy helped push him up to 48 percent support in the poll compared to 43 percent for Romney, a margin of five percentage points.
The Republican front-runner is gaining on Obama, however. In December he trailed the president by an eight-percentage-point margin in the Reuters/Ipsos poll.
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