So here's a surprise from the national poll we did on Sarah Palin last week: she's more popular with Republican voters in the northeast than in the south or midwest.
When you look at the ideological composition of Republican voters by region though it's less startling: 74% of Republicans voters in the NE describe themselves as conservatives, not all that different from the 75% in the midwest, 79% in the south, and 73% in the west. It's safe to say the days of Rockefeller Republicans are long gone- of course this same survey showed that only 19% of moderates nationally identify with the GOP so that's no great shock.
Palin is viewed favorably by 89% of western Republicans, 86% in the northeast, 76% in the south, and 71% in the midwest. I wouldn't extrapolate these numbers too far, but it might be an indication she could do better in New Hampshire than Iowa. That might be particularly true if Tim Pawlenty gets a next door bonus like Dick Gephardt did in 1988 and Barack Obama did last year.
The southern numbers aren't that surprising to me. I think she will have a hard time there in the primaries if Mike Huckabee or Newt Gingrich is in the race.
It's hard to believe we're already less than two and a half years away from the beginning of the nomination contests!