Public Policy Polling:
We've found a lot of brutal poll numbers for Sarah Palin so far in 2011: down in South Dakota, down in South Carolina, down in Arizona, only up by 1 point in Texas, only up by 1 point in Nebraska to name a few. But this has to be the worst -- independent voters say they would support Charlie Sheen over Palin for President by a 41/36 margin. Seriously.
Despite her deficit with independents Palin does lead Sheen 49-29 overall. We also tested Barack Obama against Sheen and the President leads 57-24.
"Sheen is one of the most unpopular figures we've ever polled on," PPP reports. "10% of Americans rate him favorably to 67% with a negative opinion of him." She's toxic with Democrats, less popular than Charlie Sheen among indies, and even Republicans are beginning to get a little tired of her.
Sarah Palin's ratings within the Republican Party are slumping, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, a potentially troubling sign for the former Alaska governor as she weighs whether to enter the 2012 presidential race.
For the first time in Post-ABC News polling, fewer than six in 10 Republicans and GOP-leaning independents see Palin in a favorable light, down from a stratospheric 88 percent in the days after the 2008 Republican National Convention and 70 percent as recently as October.
But wait, here comes the bad news for the GOP:
In one sense, the poll still finds Palin near the top of a list of eight potential contenders for the GOP nomination. The former vice presidential candidate scores a 58 percent favorable rating, close to the 61 percent for former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and 60 percent for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, and better than the 55 percent that onetime House speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) received.
So, in the primary, she's still a viable candidate. Throw in Judd Gregg's brokered convention scenario (which, frankly, I think should be taken with a grain of salt) and Palin could be the nominee. Even if she's not, she's a brutal campaigner and a tight race would probably wound the eventual nominee. Meanwhile, polling across party lines shows what I've been saying for a while now -- she's on her sixteenth minute of fame and she's on her way to doing whatever it is Dan Quayle's doing right now.
At this point in time, it's simply impossible to see how Sarah Palin has any path to the White House, Another spin as the vice presidential candidate, maybe. But with these numbers, even that seems doubtful. And a cabinet position? As what? The Secretary of Boy-Howdyisms? She has no special experience in anything.
But what's probably the worst for the Republican Party is her fans (at this point, you can't really call them backers. They're simply people drawn to her rapidly fading celebrity). The live in opposite-world and every time she screws up or gets criticized, they dig in deeper, plant their feet, and cry "leave
The best case scenario for the Republican Party is that Palin simply decides against running -- a decision that wouldn't surprise me at all. But, if she determines that staying out deflates what's left of her celebrity, she may just go ahead and run a campaign -- just to keep her brand alive.
And, at this point, that would be courting disaster for her party.
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