Almost half of voters say President Barack Obama doesn’t deserve a second term, and he is in a statistical tie with two top possible Republican challengers, a Quinnipiac University poll shows.
By 49 percent to 43 percent, poll respondents say Obama shouldn’t be re-elected in 2012. If a contest were held today with Republican rival Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, Obama is supported by 44 percent of those surveyed and Romney by 45 percent.
In a race with former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Obama garners 46 percent to Huckabee’s 44 percent. Obama does the best in a race against former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, winning 48 percent to 40 percent. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
Palin “is very unpopular among independents, and although she recently said she thought she could defeat Obama, the data does not now necessarily support that assertion,” Peter Brown, assistant director of the Hamden, Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement.
Palin responded “I believe so” when asked in an interview with Barbara Walters of ABC News whether she could defeat Obama in 2012. ABC has released portions of the interview, which is scheduled for broadcast Dec. 9.
Democrats, by 64 percent to 27 percent, say they don’t want another member of the party to challenge Obama in a primary race.
Men Less Supportive
Obama’s support lags among men, with 39 percent saying he should get a second term. Independents also disapprove, with only 35 percent saying the president should be re-elected.
“His weakness among independent voters at this point makes his 2012 election prospects uncertain,” Brown said.
Among the possible Republican contenders, Palin is viewed most negatively, with more than 50 percent of voters saying they have an unfavorable opinion of her. By comparison, 25 percent have an unfavorable opinion of Huckabee and 26 percent of Romney. Newt Gingrich of Georgia, the former Republican speaker of the House, is viewed unfavorably by 43 percent.
Obama’s approval rating is split at 48 percent favorable and 48 percent unfavorable.
The telephone poll, conducted Nov. 8-15, surveyed 2,424 registered voters nationwide.
© Copyright 2013 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.