On our national poll this week Barack Obama's approval rating was the same 52% as last month. The party breakdown was D+5, as opposed to last month's D+6. So all in all, a very similar universe to the August survey.
Despite that there was an 11 point average drop in the net favorability of Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, and Sarah Palin on the poll.
That's pretty weird. But I think I have an idea why. Previously we had asked first about New Gingrich on the poll, then the other three Republicans. But this time Jeb Bush was first up on our poll.
Did respondents being reminded of the Bush brand cause them to rate all the other Republican candidates less favorably? It's entirely possible. If we include Bush in a poll again I might rotate the response options- this just never occurred to me ahead of time.
Maybe Democrats need to morph Bob McDonnell and Chris Christie's faces into George W. Bush next month- although it feels to me like it's time to stop riding the anti-Bush train the truth is that it might be good to remind voters that even if they're not totally thrilled with the leadership now they like it a lot more than they did a year ago.