Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Possible Palin Mistake

Nate Silver had a good post yesterday about how Barack Obama could probably get reelected with a lower approval rating if Sarah Palin was his opponent as opposed to say Mitt Romney in 2012.

I completely agree. I looked at our last four 2012 polls and calculated the percentage of the vote Obama got among people who don't approve of him against Palin, Romney, and Mike Huckabee. Over the course of those surveys Obama averaged 9.5% against Palin with voters who fit that description while earning just 5% against both Huckabee and Romney.

Using Nate's example of a 45% approval rating, and assuming that everyone who approves of him would vote for him, that would give Obama 50.2% of the popular vote against Palin but just 47.8% against Huckabee or Romney. In other words nominating Palin vs. nominating one of the other Republicans would be the difference between GOP victory and GOP defeat. Obviously things could change a lot between now and 2012 with the perceptions of all these politicians but for now it does look like Palin would hurt Republican hopes of taking back the White House.

Here's the full data on how Obama does against the various Republican hopefuls with voters who don't approve of his job performance:

Obama % vs.





















Timothy said...

Interesting that PPP and Democracy Corps (James Carville's outfit) are pushing Romney all of sudden. Interesting indeed.

Anonymous said...

Of course they do a point or two better than her right now.

She was the subject of an unprecedented media attack lasting over a year, as well as the Obama campaign and the DNC doing everything they could to destroy her because they realized that they were on their way to defeat before the markets collapsed and rescued them.

You really have to factor in that by the time we get to an election, Romney and Huckabee will have gotten the same negative media treatment and the full on acttacks from the Obama campaign and the DNC that Palin has already received.

Where will they be after Obama and the DNC unleash a few hundred million in negative ads? After the media gets its marching orders from Axelrod and goes to town on them just as they did on Palin?

A lot of independents or dems or whoever that just she Romney and Huckabee as sort of generic Republicans right now will see them a whole lot differently after the Obama campaign in through with them. No one has paid any attention to either of them since Feb of 2008.

Bu contrast Palin received awful media treatment and the brunt of the Obama campaign assault all throughout the fall of 2008. The media and Obama WH continued their assault into 2009. Then you had her resignation which certainly didn't help things. You have the media continuing to disparage and demean her with her book coming out. Despite all that, she's right there with the other Republicans. It's not like there's a 10 pt difference. There's a 2 pt difference. Big deal.

In a sense, Palin has built up an immunity. The attacks have taken their toll, but she can't really go much lower. If you still support her at this point or are favorable towards her, there isn't much that would change your mind. However, for the other two, there's plenty. They haven't been through the Obama/media ringer. Just wait.

In any event, polls 3 yrs out from an election mean nothing. It's a good thing Obama supporters didn't give up when polls in early 2007 showd him trailing McCain by 10 or more. Or when he still trailed Hillary nationally by 20 or more as of Dec, 2007. Or when Carter led Reagan by 20 or more in 1978/1979.

They're really in 2 totally different situation. You can't really compare them at all. The bottom line is that just as with any other election involving an incumbent if Obama is below 50, he'll lose. It won't matter who the opponent is.

Anonymous said...

Also, if it is true that at the end of the day there is a segment of folks who like Romney or Huckabee and would be more disposed to vote for them over Obama than Palin, all she has to do is make one of them her VP and the problem is solved. They'll be on board as well.

Palin/Romney or Huckabee. Then all those folks who like him will be happy(probably very happy. Given Palin's history there's a great chance the VP would actually end up President 2 or 3 yrs in)

Anonymous said...

Wow. So Obama has all of 50.2% against Palin. And that's supposed to be good for him? He should have well above 60 or even 70% against an irrelevant quitter like that.

Barely a majority for the Harvard Law messiah against the state school grandmother.

Obama folks and dems feeling ood about that result is like LeBron bragging how he barely beat a middle schooler on the JV in one on one.

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