About half of all likely voters would pick Mitt Romney for president if the 2012 presidential election were held today, while a little less than half would reelect President Obama, according to Gallup's daily tracking poll.

In a new poll released Tuesday, Gallup found 50 percent of those polled said they would vote for Romney if the election were held today, and that 46 percent would vote for Obama. The pollster noted that Romney has consistently kept a small lead over the president in the Gallup seven-day rolling average in the aftermath of the first presidential debate at the beginning of October. Romney is widely considered to have been the winner of that debate.


Prior to that first debate, Obama held a small lead in most national polls. Romney has consistently held at least a 2-percentage-point lead over Obama since Oct. 11, Gallup found.

Broken down by gender, Romney holds a double-digit lead over Obama among men, 57 percent to 43 percent. But Obama leads Romney among women in the poll, with 53 percent saying they would pick the president over Romney to win the presidential election in November.

A number of recent polls have been trending in Romney's direction. A USA Today/Gallup poll on Monday found Romney surging ahead of Obama in a dozen or so battleground states. The poll found that in those states, 51 percent of likely voters preferred Romney, over 46 percent who prefer Obama.

The latest Gallup finding came on the day of the second presidential debate, to be held in a town-hall format at New York's Hofstra University. The poll was conducted among a random sample of 3,100 registered voters and 2,723 likely voters, with a margin of error of 3 percentage points.