Mitt Romney's momentum keeps growing as has opened up a six percentage point lead over President Barack Obama in the latest daily rolling poll of likely voters from Gallup.
Though the survey was taken before Obama's comparatively strong performance in Tuesday night's second debate, the survey shows that the White House is now Romney's to lose.
The former Massachusetts governor's lead now stands at 51 percent to 45 percent among likely voters, up from a 50-46 percent figure on Tuesday.
With just three weeks to go until the election Romney also leads for the first time in a month among all registered voters, the venerable polling group says. That figure is narrower with the Republican up by 48 percent to
The survey is a rolling seven-day average through Oct. 16, and Gallup only began tracking likely voters earlier this month, The Hill pointed out.
But the 6-point margin is Romney’s biggest lead yet in the survey, and coming less than three weeks before the election, shows momentum that may be hard to stop.
The poll attempts to discern information from voters to determine the likelihood that a registered voter will end up casting a ballot.
Many believe surveys of likely voters are more accurate than those that only survey registered voters, according to The Hill.
But Gallup has noted that sometimes, as in 2008, “there was only a marginal difference between the vote choices of registered voters and likely voters,” while other times, as in 1996, “there was a much more substantial difference.”
The Gallup poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
The daily tracking poll is subject to day-to-day fluctuations and could be an outlier. Romney leads Obama by less than 1 percentage point, 47.6 to 47, in the Real Clear Politics average of national polls.
Polls in the battleground states that will be critical in determining the outcome of the election favored Obama earlier in the cycle, but have tightened along with the national surveys.
Republicans are increasingly optimistic that Romney will win Virginia, Florida and North Carolina.
And Real Clear Politics recently moved Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin from “lean Obama” to “toss-up,” although Romney still has his work cut out for him in those states.
Gallup continues to show a better picture for Romney than most other pollsters. A Washington Post-ABC News poll released Monday showed Obama at 49 percent and Romney at 46 percent, while a Politico-George Washington University poll showed Obama at 49 percent and Romney at 48 percent, the Washington Post pointed out.
Some Democrats have cast doubt on Gallup’s likely-voter model, with the Obama campaign releasing an entire memo on it earlier this week when Gallup showed Romney opening up a similar lead in the 12 most competitive states in the country.
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