Poll: Palin making gains but most in GOP don't want her to run
September 21st, 2011
08:42 AM ET
10 years ago

Poll: Palin making gains but most in GOP don't want her to run

(CNN) - While she still hasn't made up her mind on a run for the White House, a new national poll suggests that former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is making gains against President Barack Obama in a hypothetical 2012 general election matchup.

According to a McClatchy-Marist survey, the GOP's 2008 vice presidential nominee trails Obama 49 to 44 percent in a hypothetical showdown, after trailing by 21 points in an August poll and 26 points in a June survey. The poll indicates that Palin now leads the president among crucial independent voters.

But while the survey, which was released Tuesday, indicates Palin may be closing the gap with the president, it also suggests that most Republicans are not enthusiastic about her launching a bid for the nomination. By a 72 to 24 percent margin, Republicans and independents who lean toward the GOP do not want Palin to run for the White House.

As for her plans for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, Palin says they’re still up in the air.

"I think people are still going to be coming and going because there is still time, and I'm still one of those still considering," she said Tuesday night in an interview on the Fox News Channel.

But Palin did acknowledge that the calendar will soon force a decision, as some of the early voting states in the primary and caucus season have November deadlines for candidates to appear on the ballot.

"You have to start getting your ducks lined up to have your names on these ballots," said Palin. "But I do think this is going to be such an unconventional election cycle … A lot is going to happen in these next fourteen months. Mark my word, it is going to be an unconventional type of election process."

According to the poll, 49 percent say they definitely plan to vote against the president next year, with 36 percent saying they definitely plan to support Obama. By a 53 to 28 percent margin, independents say they plan to vote against the president in November 2012.

The poll indicates that Texas Gov. Rick Perry leads the field in the race for the GOP presidential nomination, with the support of 30 percent of Republicans and independents who lean toward the GOP. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who's making his second run for the White House, received 22 percent support. Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota was at 12 percent, with everyone else in the single digits.

In hypothetical 2012 general election matchups, the survey shows Obama with a two point margin over Romney, 46 to 44 percent, and the president with a nine point advantage, 50 to 41 percent, over Perry.

The McClatchy-Marist poll was conducted September 13-14, after the CNN/Tea Party Republican debate in Tampa, Florida, with 1,042 adults questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

- Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PSteinhauserCNN.

Filed under: 2012 • Polls • Sarah Palin
soundoff (392 Responses)
  1. LacrosseMom(real one)

    @ "Founders 1791"....... So now YOU KNOW what the Founders would think and say about Palin??? YOU are delusional!

    September 21, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  2. Dave

    She thinks she can jump in late and avoid all the debates and questions. That way maybe she can sneak into the race despite being a know-nothing dullard.

    September 21, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  3. AlaskaPalin

    By gosh she hasn't even announced yet independents are going after her in droves! Wow! What will happen if she gets in. She was insulted and abused by so many on the left but she is not vengeful. The words 'the crucial independents' must be like a dagger in the hearts of the democrats.
    They have even now resorted to insulting and abusing these good americans. Betcha! Madam president!

    September 21, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  4. MaryM

    It's not going to happen people. To her supporters, SHE JUST WANTS YOUR MONEY STUPID!!

    September 21, 2011 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  5. bailoutsos

    She's a hoot.

    September 21, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  6. The Dude

    If Palin waits until the very last minute, less time for the media to expose her for the fool that she is. As for America's infatuation with these backward ingrates – Perry, Romney, Bachman, Palin... These folks are exactly what the dumbed-down elctorate wants.

    But it doesn't matter – the President of the US isn't any big deal – and certainly not the most important job in the world as we're continually told. Presidents only do what they are told to do. Look at Obama. Promising in the election, disapointing in the job. Keeps Bush's programs in place. Wake up people. This is gov*t OF the Corporations, BY the corporations and FOR the Corporations. Say goodbye to the middle-class. They make too much money that the Corps want to keep.

    September 21, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  7. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Be afraid Socialists Liberal Democrats......be very afraid of the next President Sarah Palin!"


    September 21, 2011 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  8. Well, well..

    Founders1971, LOL!!!! Sarah banks on idiots like you to pad her pockets. Can you see Russia from your house as well?? Give me a break.

    September 21, 2011 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  9. The Real Tom Paine


    When did she ever have 93% approval ratings across the board in AK? What poll was it? The only thing "center" about her 30-odd months in office was her willingness to use the office to settle personal scores, and her taking on of Big Oil resulted in a failed pipeline project that is generating jobs in Canada, not Alaska. Pipeline construction to the terminals in the US has screeched to a halt because Transcanada is years away from completing the project, and the companies in the Lower 48 that were involved with the project have focussed on maintenance of existing lines, not building new ones. What other problems did she solve? Did she lower rates of sexual assualt by making women pay for rape kits? How about education? How about economic opportunity? What did she accomplish in 30 months before quitting her elected job to go on her perpetual victim tour? Has her successor continued her policies, or did he dial back on them? You cannot make a mark in 30 months in an executive position, and she has clearly demonstrated a thin skin, vindictive temper, and a stunning lack of vision. Just mouthing platitudes is not enough: what did she try, and was it successful over the long term? Can you name any legacy of hers in Alaska that is not connected to sleaze and money?

    September 21, 2011 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  10. Whoosh

    Too much Ado about nothing.

    September 21, 2011 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  11. Founders1791

    @ "Founders 1791"....... So now YOU KNOW what the Founders would think and say about Palin??? YOU are delusional!

    Actually yes, I chose the handle because I actually have relatives that were "front and center" in our Founding, and my family tree has been very active ever since, in the Philadelphia, Michigan, Indiana, and now Florida regions.

    The key to a good candidate is this: Are they honest? Can they be bought? Are they affective in their duties?

    Sarah Palin can answer yes to all these and more....Obama has utterly failed in them all.

    The decision is easy for "objective people" to choose Sarah over all the others if they want "real change" that will "rock the boat".

    September 21, 2011 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  12. Ed Texas

    Palin is nothing but a self-serving, media hungry right-wing whacko. She was a failure as a governor who didn't finish her elected term. She has very little experience in government and has offered no strong suggestions on current issues or how to get people back to work. She does make a good resource for Comedians and others looking for a good laugh.

    September 21, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  13. Tony

    She won't run, but she won't admit that yet because keeping people guessing keeps her in the limelight.

    I do wish she would run though. Hilarity would ensue bringing me much laughter and smiles. 🙂

    September 21, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  14. Neil from TX

    If palin runs, its an insult to our nation, to our democracy. No one will ever vote for GOP. Its also time for Obama to move over and give hillary clinton a chance. To run a nation, you do not need a good guy but a smart and go getter. Not take permission from speaker Bonehead all the time. Hillary is correct choice. Or Perry is probably fit to run this nation. Anyone else its 10 more years of recession

    September 21, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  15. Buster Bloodvessel

    Palin/Bachmann for the Tea Party, Romney/Pawlenty for the GOP, and L.Ron Paul/Voldemort on the Creepy Old Men ticket. Obama for the win.

    September 21, 2011 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  16. Annie, Atlanta

    Does anyone else think that Palin or even Bachmann being considered as viable presidential candidates makes a mockery of the US, or is it just me? I realize anyone can run for president as long as they fulfill the requirements, but seriously? When did we start to admire ignorance and stupidity, divisiveness, and outright hate of anyone not like them, and when did we start to think that these are actual qualifications to run a country as diverse as ours? What did I miss, and when?

    September 21, 2011 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Sarah Palin you describe, whom I guess did all of that sutff you talk about, just simply does not exist anymore. Why do you think she quit being a Governer? The Sarah Palin you described was overcome by the dark side, the Republican National Committee. Palin changed into something that would never do the things that you described, which were used as talking points against her in 2008, BTW. Stop living in the past. She got rich quick, and likes it too much to ever run for elected office again, at leat not this year or next.

    September 21, 2011 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    Did anyone notice that this poll is from 2008?

    September 21, 2011 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  19. roscoe

    The two cops in the photo must have read the new book about Palin. They're hoping that they look enough like Glen Rice.....

    September 21, 2011 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  20. bailee

    YIKES!! Are you ready for AMERICA to become a BIG REALITY SHOW????? We have already shown the world we are working towards that end with the GOP and Tea Partiers showing us all of the "tricks" they have in their bag!! SARAH PALIN, 2012!!! BIG REALITY . . . BIG BUCKS . . . . AND THE END OF AMERICA!!

    September 21, 2011 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  21. Buster Bloodvessel

    "Governor Sarah Palin WALKS THE TALKS of CONSERVATIVE VALUES" Is that going to be on YouTube? Seeing her walk the talk of conservative values would be hilarious. Is Michael Palin involved as well, and is it like the Ministry of Funny Walks?

    September 21, 2011 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  22. Observer

    You go, girl!

    Good news for Democrats.

    September 21, 2011 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  23. JohnRJ08

    Palin will NEVER RUN FOR PRESIDENT. She's far too narcissistic and greedy. If elected she would have to take a huge pay cut. If she lost, she would become a two-time loser. Most important of all, she would NEVER willingly expose herself to the kind of scrutiny in the media which she has so successfully avoided over the last three years, but could NEVER avoid as a presidential candidate. So GET OFF this Palin for President delusion. She's toying with the press and the people who blindly support her for her own personal gain.

    September 21, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  24. SixDegrees

    This story is pointless, because Palin isn't going to run. She's not going to give up the Gadfly Gravytrain, and knows very well that any campaign, faced with questions in an uncontrolled, unfiltered environment, would implode within hours.

    What the poll actually indicates is that Obama's favorability has fallen, not that Palin's has risen.

    September 21, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  25. Jayne

    Any "independent" voter who says he'd vote for Palin isn't an independent voter at all, but a Tea Partier pretending to be independent. No true independent is stupid enough, IMO, to vote for this quitter.

    September 21, 2011 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
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