US Republican Romney solidifies poll lead after debate

BOSTON - Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney solidified his standing as the early front-runner in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination after Monday's seven-candidate debate, polls released on Thursday showed.
A survey by Public Policy Polling showed Romney with 22 percent support among Republicans. Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, new to the field and seen as a strong performer in Monday's debate, had 19 percent.
Businessman Herman Cain had 17 percent, and Sarah Palin, still not an announced candidate, 15 percent.
A Rasmussen Reports poll showed Romney at 33 percent support in a survey of 1,000 voters taken on Monday night after the debate.
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