Thursday, February 11, 2010

Just 44% of Voters Choose Obama over Nameless GOP Candidate

Gallup released a poll showing Barack Obama barely hanging on in an election against a generic GOP candidate. The poll showed voters divided 44% choosing Obama 42% choosing a nameless Republican candidate. The poll showed Independents leaning toward a Republican candidate by a margin of 45 to 31. Essentially Obama barely hangs on here because Democrats still outnumber Republicans and the poll samples registered voters which would tend to favor Democrats more than a sample of likely voters. Still, he hangs on with a 2 point lead which falls within the 4 point margin of error.

Ed Morrissey points out another interesting find in the poll. Gallup notes that Obama's approval hovers around 50% and generally speaking Presidents with a 50% approval tend to win reelection. This trend may not apply to Obama as voters may say they approve yet still vote for a Republican. Ed writes:
The influence of Obama’s personal likability appears to be influencing job approval. The difference between that and the percentage who would vote for his re-election is six points, which is outside the margin of error. Clearly, some people “approve” of Obama while disliking his performance enough to vote for an unnamed Republican challenger, at least at this point — and that’s something to keep in mind when looking at approval ratings in other polls, especially those based on likely voters.
The poll asks Republicans and Republican leaning Independents to name a potential candidate for 2012 without prompting them.  The top five, in order, are Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin, John McCain, Scott Brown, and Mike Hukabee.  When Gallup polled Republicans in July, Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Huckabee led the field of potential candidates supported for a GOP nomination.  Palin does better with conservatives while Romney does equally well with conservatives and moderate or liberal Republicans.   Generally speaking, these early results are based on name recognition and Gallup points out Rudy Giuliani was favored early on and yet failed to win the GOP nomination.  It appears, though, Republicans, and Republican leaning Independents have not settled on one candidate and seem to be open to a variety of candidates.

Via Memeorandum

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