Friday, November 20, 2009

Monthly 2012 Numbers

Barack Obama's still leading all of his top potential opponents for 2012, but with his approval rating nationally below 50% for the first time his margins against a couple of them have dropped below what he won against John McCain last fall.

For the eighth month in a row Mike Huckabee comes the closest to Obama of the leading GOP hopefuls but for the first time he has company in Mitt Romney. Both of them trail the President by five points, Huckabee by a 49-44 margin and Romney by a 48-43 spread.

The key to Huckabee's strong performance is that he does the best of the Republican candidates we tested with the party base, taking 87% of the GOP vote in a head to head with Obama. There is some bad news for the former Arkansas Governor in the poll too though, as his favorability has moved slightly into negative territory by a 37/36 margin. This is the first time Huckabee has been in the red on that front.

Romney's strength in his best performance yet against Obama is with independents. While the other GOP candidates trail by 7-9 points with them Romney is at just a 44-42 deficit. His favorability numbers in the poll are less than impressive though, with 30% of voters holding a positive opinion of him to 39% negative. That has a lot to do with fewer than 50% of Republican voters saying they have favorable opinion of him.

Sarah Palin may be getting at least a slight book bounce, as her favorability numbers are the best they've been since August and her margin relative to Obama is the smallest it's been since July. Neither of those things are necessarily saying much though- 49% of Americans have an unfavorable opinion of her to 40% favorable and she continues to trail the President 51-43.

New to the poll this month is Ron Paul. He is more well liked by Democrats (18%) than his fellow Republicans who sport 13-14% favorability numbers with the opposing party. At the same time he is easily the least popular within his own party, as 25% of Republican voters have an unfavorable opinion of him to 11-19% for the other three. He trails Obama 46-38.

What does this all mean for Obama? He is in a slightly weaker position than he was a year ago, with his 49% approval rating running four points below his share of the popular vote last year and his leads over Huckabee and Romney a bit smaller than his winning margin over John McCain. At the same time he's already pretty much bottomed out with GOP voters so as is often the case in politics his long term prognosis is going to depend on keeping the independents he won over last fall and ensuring that he continues to fire up the Democratic base the way he did in 2008.

Full results here


Anonymous said...

Thank you for including Dr. Paul in these results, this is the first poll that we have with Ron Paul in 2012. Thanks again!

Russ said...

Considering the makeup of the sample you polled (47/45 for Obama over McCain in the 2008 election) these are pretty impressive numbers for the President.

Anonymous said...

Do you have some Republican splits?

E.g. younger Republicans v. older Republicans, moderate v. conservative, male v. female?

Anonymous said...


Actually, the poll also shows 41% Democrats. The percentage of the electorate that identified itself as Democrats in the 2008 election was 39%.

5s said...

I came here to read about Ron Paul's performance in your poll. Thanks for including him!

Rasmus said...

Paul looks surprisingly good. Almost all undecideds in his matchup with Obama are Conservative or Moderate, White Republicans. They'd finally break for him, at least against Obama, I think. And I'm not a Paulite.

Also, your sample is a bit weird in so far that the South goes for Obama strongly in every matchup, but the Midwest doesn't.

josh said...

If Dr Ron Paul can participate in a televised debate his numbers will soar. Thank you for including Rep Paul in your poll.

Anonymous said...

Huckabee is a poser! I'm from Arkansas,i know. He is a liberal!!! Raised taxes in Ar,promissing to fix our roads(wich he never did!!!).Instead he gave college tuiton money to kids of illegal mexicans amongst other things. He also released a rapist from prison early,who then went to Mo. and killed a women. These are just a few exaples of Huckabees liberal ways. Been to Arkansas lately? It's starting to look like Mexico thanks to 'Slick Huck's liberal politics when he was the governor there!!! Thanks a lot Huckabee! We don't need you in the White House...For more information about Huckabee please contact Quint Hilyer,a real Ar. conservative columnist,who'll be glad to tell you all about 'the Huckster',trust me! Huckabee is more liberal then Mc Cain...& that's a fact. But don't take my word for it,educate yourself. I like Ron Paul too,but i don't think he has enough support to win in 2012 & we can't afford another 4 years of Obama,so i'm hoping Romney will get the nomination & pick Jim De Mint as his VP! =)

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