Following her vote last week to support a health care bill in the Senate Finance Committee Olympia Snowe finds herself a lot more popular with voters in the opposite party than with her own.
70% of Democrats approve of her job performance while only 45% of Republicans do. The approval rating with Democrats is larger than for many Democratic Senators we have polled on across the country this year. At the same time the only Senators we've found with numbers worse with their own party's voters are Jim Bunning and Roland Burris.
51% of independents express support for Snowe and her overall approval rating is 56%, with 31% of voters disapproving of her. That ranks her in the top 5 for popularity out of about 35 Senators PPP has looked at across the country this year.
Despite her considerably better popularity with Democrats than Republicans, only 32% of Maine voters think that Snowe should switch parties while 49% think she should not and 20% are unsure. Interestingly there is little difference across party lines on these numbers- 33% of Democrats and 32% of Republicans think she should flip.
Snowe may end up having no choice on whether to switch parties if she wants to get reelected in 2012. Among conservative Republicans, who tend to dominate primary electorates, her approval rating is only 31% with 59% disapproving of her. And specifically on the issue of health care just 19% approve of her actions with 65% disapproving.
The wrath of the Club for Growth eventually made renomination as a Republican impossible for Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania and it will be interesting to see if the same thing plays itself out in Maine.
Maine voters support a 'public option' for health care, which Snowe opposes, by a 48/28 margin. In one of those weird twists of public opinion supporters of such a measure give Snowe a 70% approval rating, while only 30% of those opposed to it think she's doing a good job.
Full results here