The Washington Times - October 18, 2012, 12:29PM

Mitt Romney is now solidly above 50 percent support among likely voters in Gallup’s tracking poll and holds a 52-45 lead over President Obama, according to the latest numbers Thursday afternoon.

The seven-day rolling average is still heavily weighted toward respondents polled before Tuesday night’s debate, but the numbers make clear just how big a lead Mr. Romney had built heading into that affair.

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Gallup also gave Mr. Romney a slight lead, 48-47, when all registered voters were included.

It was only this week that Mr. Romney topped the 50 percent mark, which is usually considered a major turning point in the election. Mr. Obama had hit the 50 percent mark among registered voters several times in recent weeks but had never topped it.