We finally found a poll that Sarah Palin does well in with Democrats- when you ask them who they want the Republican nominee in 2012 to be.
We posed that question to Democratic primary voters in both Ohio and Wisconsin last week and she came out with a much bigger lead than she did with Republican voters in those states. In Ohio she's at 22% to 16% for Mike Huckabee with no one else even hitting double digits. In Wisconsin she gets 21% to 15% for Huckabee again with no one else hitting double digits.
The plurality of Democrats- 36% in Wisconsin and 33% in Ohio- said they had no opinion about who the Republicans should nominate. But it's clear that a lot of the voters who do have one see Palin as easy pickings for Obama and as a result hope she gets the nomination. And our general election polls in those states support that line of thinking- Obama led Palin by 14 in Wisconsin and by 7 in Ohio.
This is actually more than a hypothetical exercise- it suggests the possibility that in states with open primaries Democrats might go vote for Palin in hopes that Republicans get their weakest candidate. The party may have an 'Operation Chaos' of its own in 2012.
Full results here