New Poll: The More Americans Know Possible GOP Candidates, The Less They Like Them

Some moderately cheer-inducing news for 2012 based on a new survey from Public Policy Polling. Four of the leading potential candidates, Mike Huckabee, Newt Ginrich, Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney, all dropped significantly in popularity since the last poll--as their public appearances and statements have increased. As PPP's Tom Jensen writes: " The fact that the more Americans are exposed to them, the less they like them certainly does not bode well for their competitiveness next year."

A few of the the results from PPP's potential 2012 match-ups vs. President Obama, including numbers on Tim Pawlenty and Herman Cain, are summarized below (pdf link):

Both Mike Huckabee (48-43) and Mitt Romney (47-42) trail the president by five points. That is an identical margin as last month’s results for Romney, but Huckabee was then down by only three. Trailing by nine last month, Newt Gingrich is now behind 11 (50- 39). And, as ever, bringing up the rear among the usual suspects, Sarah Palin has increased her deficit back to 15 points (53-38) after lagging by 12 in February. PPP also tested likely contender Tim Pawlenty, who trails by 14 (47-33), and possible GOP primary entrant Herman Cain, who loses by 18 (47-29).

While President Obama's numbers remain middling in this poll, his opponents are making the job of re-electing him easier, at least now.  h/t TPM.

No mention yet in these polls of more extreme candidates like Michelle Bachmann, but one can certainly be confident that thus far, the "new candidates" and "fresh blood" from the GOP are not going to fare much better than the above choices given their out-of-mainstream beliefs and frequent gaffes. As Steve Benen notes:

"In case it seemed the freak-show qualities of the GOP field couldn't get worse, also note that disgraced former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, kicked off the bench for refusing to acknowledge federal law, is also interested in launching a presidential exploratory committee."

And government-loathing Tea Partier Rand Paul has begun murmurings about a run as well. The field just gets better and better.


AlterNet / By Sarah Seltzer

Posted at March 28, 2011, 6:11am

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