Top of the Ticket

Political commentary from the LA Times

« Previous Post | Top of the Ticket Home | Next Post »

Poll postulates Palin popularity plunges precipitously

August 12, 2009 | 12:58 pm

Rep-ublican former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin, the wife of a popular Arctic snowmachine racer who also once served as Alaska's first female governor, seems to find her own popularity plummeting.

According to numbers atop a new poll by CNN/Opinion Research the popular hockey mom's favorable rating in a survey of at least 1,136 adult Americans has plunged seven points since May. A significant drop.

She went from 46% favorable down to 39% a few days after she experienced premature resignation and left office 17 months early to save Alaska from more partisan attacks on her. And, who knows, maybe plan some future political activity in other states.

Palin, who plucked Sen. John McCain from political obscurity in Arizona as her GOP presidential ticket running mate last summer, enjoyed her highest popularity right after a rousing speech at the Republican convention in early September. She was at 57% then, but much higher among Republicans and conservatives.

McCain's recent favorability high was 61% right after he lost in November, though he was close at 60% when he teamed up with Palin around Labor Day and 61% just before then. He's at 51% now, a standing that would win most elections.

CNN's Keating Holland reports Palin remains popular among Republicans but is no longer wildly popular among Republicans. An interesting image, wild Republicans.

Holland also notes that, according to his numbers, Palin's current popularity just about matches that of Dan Quayle when he left the vice presidency in 1993 after a similar unsuccessful VP campaign. Of course, Quayle didn't wear rimless glasses and red shoes or write an eagerly-awaited book.

Down near the end of the CNN poll story, we learn the margin of error for the entire poll is +/- 3 points. OK.

But wait one minute!

In the last sentence we also learn that the margin of error for the smaller Republican poll sample is +/- 6.5 points. Which means, statistically speaking, that Palin could actually be just about as popular right now as she was in May, despite all the ensuing ethics/resignation/quitting kerfluffle.

Oh, those sneaky medias, leaving such info till the end of the story like that. And this.

-- Andrew Malcolm

Do not find your popularity waning from political ignorance. Click here for Twitter alerts on each new Ticket item. Or follow us   @latimestot

Photo: Getty Images