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Obama Still Leads All Potential 2012 Opponents

A new Public Policy Polling poll shows that President Obama still maintains comfortable leads over all of the Republicans who’ve been mentioned as potential opponents in 2012:

[Obama] leads Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush, and Sarah Palin by anywhere from 7-15 points in hypothetical 2012 contests.

Huckabee comes the closest, trailing Obama 48-41. In the six months PPP has run this poll he has been the most competitive Republican every time. Obama’s lead has increased from 47-44 over the former Arkansas Governor a month ago.

Mitt Romney does next best, down 48-39. In some ways he looks like a stronger general candidate than a primary one though. He has the best favorability of the GOP quartet with Democrats and independents, but only 50% of Republicans have a positive opinion of him compared to 70% for Mike Huckabee and 69% for Sarah Palin. Will he be able to connect well enough with the GOP base to snag the nomination?

It’s safe to say that the country is not ready for another Bush. Only 22% of respondents said they had a favorable opinion of Jeb, with 45% saying it was unfavorable. Even Palin’s numbers are better with Democrats and independents than his. He trails Obama 50-37 in a potential contest. It’ll be interesting to see if the Bush brand is permanently damaged or if the family can make a comeback in the future, but it seems safe to say that won’t be likely in the next few years.

And finally Sarah Palin polls the worst against Obama, and her numbers have been getting progressively worse over the last couple months. Her favorability peaked in our polling at 47/45 in the middle of July, then dropped to 40/49 in August, and now 37/55 in September. Hard to say why she’s seeing so much droppage during a period when she’s been mostly out of the public eye but it all adds up to her trailing Obama 53-38.

The most signifcant numbers are these — Among the general public, Sarah Palin’s popularity rating is 55% unfavorable to 37% unfavorable; among liberals it’s 81% unfavorable, 15% favorable; among moderates it’s 71% unfavorable to 20% favorable; among conservatives it’s 69% favorable to 22% unfavorable; among Democrats it’s 80% unfavorable to 12% favorable; among independents it’s 59% unfavorable to 33% favorable; among Republicans it’s 69% favorable to 22% unfavorable.

It’s entirely possible that, in 2012, the Republican Party could nominate the one candidate who has absolutely no chance of winning.

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4 Responses to “Obama Still Leads All Potential 2012 Opponents”

  1. John Burke says:

    It’s an old rule of thumb in political polling that a prominent incumbent who draws less that 50% against prospective opponents is vulnerable. Of course, when you’re still ahead by 10 points, that may not seem so important — but it is.

    In Obama’s case, he’s just barely started, having won election less than a year ago. He’s everywhere on YV and in the news and on the Internet, exposed to the tens of millions who will vote. In contrast, the people polled against him are old news or at best pop up here and there as cable talking heads. Plus, Obama’s running the ship of state, a role that gives anyone a boost from people who want the ship to sail well.

    Yet, less than half the people say they would vote for him against most of these relative pygmies. That’s not a good sign for him.

  2. Vast says:

    It’s also not a really good sign for the GOP either.

  3. Let's Be Free says:

    Let’s hear it for my boy Mike, jumped on his bandwagon two years back when he was polling single digits, if anything at all. Unfortunately, this is probably his peak. At some point voters would focus on his musical talents and be reminded of the saxophonist, then the piano player……

    Need more Republican candidates, hopefully with charisma, and experience. Perhaps we will learn that the Arnold was fathered by a US GI, born on a US base during the post WW II American occupation. Just a thought.

  4. Tom Burns says:

    The GOP needs new candidates. Huckabee, Romney, Jeb and Palin should not run. Anyone who ran in 2008, whether in the GOP primary or the General Presidential Election should not run in the GOP primary this time around.
    If it absolutely had to be one of these four candidates, I too would say Romney is the best bet. He seems to be the smartest of all four of them.
    And yet, perhaps a face-out-of-nowhere who proved themselves competent enough could give it a shot.

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