Some 2012 Polling

Not that we aren't just a few months past the last presidential election, but Democratic pollster Public Policy Polling (.pdf) is serving up some polling on the next presidential election, for those interested.

Barack Obama 53, Newt Gingrich 36
Barack Obama 52, Mike Huckabee 39
Barack Obama 56, Sarah Palin 37
Barack Obama 53, Mitt Romney 35

These numbers are interesting for a number of reasons. First, Barack Obama leads each of the four Republicans polled by at least 13 points, and as many as 19 points, despite the fact that the partisan make up of the survey's sample is more Republican-friendly than both the average of recent polls and the actual electorate in November 2008. PPP's sample included 40 percent Democrats, 34 percent Republicans and 26 percent Independents, a 6-point net advantage for the Democrats. The overall trend of polling, however, places the Democrats' advantage at closer to 9 points, and on election day last fall the Democrats had a 7-point advantage among voters. So PPP's numbers underestimate President Obama's edge at this very early point in the election cycle.

There is an extent to which these numbers might be chalked up, at least in part, to differences in name recognition within the polled matchups. Nearly a quarter of those polled by PPP indicated that they do not have opinions of Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Mike Huckabee, so it could be that their level of support is understated by this survey. (Though it is worth noting that Sarah Palin has roughly the same level of name recognition as the President, and an unfavorable rating of 50 percent, so no excuses there.) However, Gingrich's unfavorable rating is significantly higher than Barack Obama's (47 percent versus 38 percent) despite the fact that he is less known than the President, and Romney's is close to that level (36 percent), indicating that unless virtually everyone who now doesn't know enough about Romney to rate him either way would have to come away liking him in order to match the President's popularity, not a terribly likely situation.

In all, a good early start for the President's reelection hopes.

Tags: White House 2012 (all tags)



You say:

"PPP's numbers underestimate President Obama's edge at this very early point in the election cycle."

How on earth do you know that?

by andgarden 2009-05-21 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: You say:

Read the preceding paragraph.

by Jonathan Singer 2009-05-21 04:18PM | 0 recs
It seems very much like a statement

you should qualify. The "overall trend" of party ID is not nearly enough support for your claim, IMO.

by andgarden 2009-05-21 04:43PM | 0 recs
Re: It seems very much like a statement

I'm no polling expert, but party ID strikes me as more of a trailing indicator than a leading one.  Also, it strikes me as a methodological error to adjust for one cherry-picked variable without taking anything else into account.  I mean, maybe this poll dramatically oversampled women and we should be adjusting for that too.

Having said that, it's a blog post and the guy wants to write something more than just "here's a link to the poll"!

by Steve M 2009-05-21 05:03PM | 0 recs
There's a certain amount of

"special sauce"  in any given poll, because you have to make educated guesses about the universe you expect to eventually show up on election day. But what I think PPP usually does, and what the pollsters I most respect tend to do, is weight to the census for a given geography and let the interviewed tell you the rest. Everything else is a step above dart throwing.

Weighting by party ID is highly controversial  because party ID is an attitude and not a demographic category. People can and do change their minds about what party they identify with.

by andgarden 2009-05-21 05:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Some 2012 Polling

Before evaluating Obama vs. potential GOP candidates....doesn't Obama have to win the Democratic primary first?   In the past two Dem primaries over 8 candidates have participated in the primaries at some point.    

by newmexicodem 2009-05-21 06:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Some 2012 Polling
In each of those primaries, there was no incumbent. Do you really think there are going to be sevn other Dems going after Obama in 2012?
Oh I forgot, this is the liberal blogosphere and here in Blog Birch Land, if you're not for Dennis Kucinich,you're a corporate tool and Harry Truman in full give 'em you-know-where mode would get his head photoshopped on a burned-put ballerina at Bartcop.
by spirowasright 2009-05-21 07:28PM | 0 recs

but since no incumbent President in modern history has lost a primary for his second term, it would be pretty amazing if Obama were the first.

by West of the Fields 2009-05-21 08:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Some 2012 Polling

Wow, the past two!  That's quite a trend - that's a whole 1 more than a single incident!

Those two elections have something else in common too.  It's on the tip of my tongue... I'll get it eventually.

by Jess81 2009-05-21 10:01PM | 0 recs


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