Electoral College Polls: Real Clear Politics Says Romney is Now Ahead

President Obama surged from his second debate as feisty and energized as he performed against his Republican challenger Mitt Romney on Tuesday from Hofstra University.

“Mitt Romney’s trying to sell you a sketchy deal,” Obama told a crowd of approximately 6,000 in North Carolina. “[he has a] Five-point plan [which is] really just a one point plan. Folks at the top get to play with a different set of rules than you do,” the president added to loud applause after citing one of his most memorable lines from the debate. 

And while Obama supporters and operatives were expecting a "comeback" from the president after a dismal first debate performance that all but erased his lead over Mitt Romney, so far the gains haven't materialized.  

Post debate polling projections show that the president "edged up" a Gallup track poll, but Romney remains in the lead and gained in other polls spanning the pre- and post-debate period. This leaves the race exactly where it stood for most of the year, and before the president's post convention boon: in a statistical tie. 

Gallup’s daily polling of registered voters for Oct. 17 has Romney holding a lead at 48% with Obama gaining one point post-debate for 47%, suggesting that the president’s assertiveness and Romney's slips during the debate may have chipped away at the GOP challenger’s two-week surge. 

However, Reaclearpolitics.com's Electoral College vote projections show Romney has leaped ahead of Obama for the first time in the electoral count. The Republican is now showing 206 likely electoral votes to Obama’s 201 (with 131 votes in play, and 270 needed to win). 

Furthermore, the first poll to be released that includes the post-debate period, a Rasmussen poll conducted Monday through Wednesday, shows Romney holding a 2-point lead, 49% to Obama’s 47%. 

Finally, the Realclearpolitics.com average of national polls (Oct. 7-17) has Romney leading by 0.7 points, 47.6% to 46.9%, reflecting a wide range of polls in which Romney reversed the prevailing trend by as many as 12 points, while making inroads among independents in key swing states to shift the momentum of the race.