Gallup: Mike Huckabee, Hillary Clinton Most Favored for 2016

Image: Gallup: Mike Huckabee, Hillary Clinton Most Favored for 2016 Former Arkansas GOP Gov. Mike Huckabee, left, and Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Thursday, 17 Jul 2014 10:19 AM

By Melanie Batley

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Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former Arkansas GOP Gov. Mike Huckabee are the best liked of a wide field of possible 2016 presidential candidates, a new poll has found.

According to a Gallup poll conducted July 7-10 of 1,013 adults, 55 percent of Americans have a favorable view of Clinton, compared to 36 percent who have an unfavorable view, the highest favorability rating among the 16 candidates tested.

"Clinton's image has lost some of its luster as she has moved from a less overtly political role as secretary of state to her current role as a book author and potential presidential candidate, she is in an arguably stronger position with the public now than she was before her 2008 presidential campaign," Gallup said in a statement.

Huckabee, meanwhile, is the best-liked among possible GOP contenders with a favorability rating of 33 percent, compared to 21 percent who view him unfavorably. He ranks just 1 point higher than Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and Texas Gov. Rick Perry, though his net favorability rating is several points higher.

The survey also tested name recognition, an important factor in a candidate's success. On that score, Clinton also topped the list of all candidates, with 91 percent of respondents saying they are familiar with her.

Vice President Joe Biden comes in second place with a name recognition of 80 percent, though the lowest favorability rating among all Democrats with a negative 4 percent.

Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren has just 38 percent name recognition, falling behind nine of the GOP candidates who were assessed on that measure.

On the Republican side, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush are the best known among voters, with 65 percent saying they are familiar with them. Texas Gov. Rick Perry comes in third with 58 percent name recognition.

"The viability of a candidate's chances depends both on voters knowing who the candidate is, but also on voters having a positive impression of the candidate. Candidates usually become better known over the course of a campaign, but those who are better known at the outset have an advantage in that they don't have to work as hard to attract attention to, or raise money for, their campaigns," Gallup said.

"On the other hand, those who are well-known may have more difficulty improving their image during a campaign."

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