A new Public Policy Polling set of polls shows that President Obama trails in a hypothetical matchup with former Gov. Mike Huckabee 45%-44%. That marks the first time Obama has trailed in one of the PPP polls against a possible GOP Opponent.
The poll showed former Gov. Mitt Romney was the second strongest against Obama, trailing him only 44%-42%, and Sarah Palin was eight points down to Obama at 49%-41%:
For the first time in one of our monthly polls looking ahead to the 2012 Presidential election Barack Obama trails one of his hypothetical opponents, albeit by the smallest of margins.Notice that the poll shows Palin is the most well-liked GOP candidate within the Republican Party, which is why we have her rated as #1 in our rating of possible GOP candidates (scroll down to bottom of home page). But this shows the dilemma faced by GOP voters in 2012. The key will be to nominate a candidate who is not only popular in the party, but who can win in the General Election, and seriously compete is states that Barack Obama won last time. The message will be most important, but the messenger is significant as well.
Mike Huckabee has a 45-44 advantage over Obama, aided largely by a 44-38 lead with independents. There continues to be no evidence of any negative fallout for Huckabee after murders of police officers committed by an ex-Arkansas inmate whose sentence he had commuted. His 35/29 favorability breakdown is actually slightly better than it was in November before that incident.
Mitt Romney does the next best, trailing Obama 44-42. His favorability is 36/32, and he's the most popular Republican among independents (41/32). Romney actually matches Huckabee with GOP voters this month and gets over 50%, ending a trend in his numbers that had seemed to spell difficulty for snagging a Republican nomination.
Sarah Palin trails Obama 49-41 largely because she loses 14% of the Republican vote to him, making her the only one of the GOP candidates we tested who Obama could get double digit crossover support against. At the same time Palin continues to be the most well liked potential GOP candidate within her party- at 71% favorability. Her problem appears to be that the Republicans who don't care for her will go so far as to vote for Obama instead of her. . . . MORE