Obama Visits Storm-Ravaged Alabama

Add to Briefcase
April 29, 2011, 9:53 a.m.

Con­duc­ted 10/7-10 by Selzer & Co.; sur­veyed 721 LVs; mar­gin of er­ror +/- 3.7% (re­lease, 10/12).

Obama As POTUS

- RVs RVs RVs RVs - Now 7/12 3/22 12/7 9/14 Ap­prove 47% 52% 50% 54% 56% Dis­ap­prove 48 44 45 41 37

Fav/Un­fav (IDed By Title)

- RVs RVs - Now 7/12 3/22 H. Clin­ton 64%/31% n/a n/a M. Obama 62 /25 n/a n/a B. Obama 53 /44 55%/40% 53%/42% G. Bush 42 /55 n/a n/a S. Pal­in 38 /54 33 /55 n/a N. Pelosi 34 /52 n/a 31 /48 J. Boehner 29 /32 n/a n/a

House Gen­er­al Elec­tion Match­up

- Now 7/12 Gen­er­ic Dem 42% 40% Gen­er­ic GOP­er 40 48 Oth­er 12 5 Un­dec 6 7

Dir­ec­tion Of U.S.

- RVs RVs RVs RVs - Now 7/12 3/22 12/7 9/14 Right dir. 31% 31% 34% 32% 40% Wrong dir. 64 63 58 59 52

Which Do You See As The Most Im­port­ant Is­sue Fa­cing The U.S. Right Now?

Un­em­ploy­ment/jobs 49% Fed­er­al de­fi­cit/gov’t spend­ing 27 Health care 10 War in Afgh­anistan 7 Im­mig­ra­tion 5 Oth­er 1

Would ___ Make You More/Less Likely To Sup­port A Par­tic­u­lar Can­did­ate?

- Mo­re­Likely Less­Likely Wouldn’tMat­ter Has worked co­oper­at­ively with the oth­er party 67% 12% 19% Sup­ports gov’t spend­ing to cre­ate jobs and stim­u­late the eco­nomy 59 30 10 Sup­ports with­draw­ing U.S. troops from Afgh­anistan, re­gard­less of wheth­er con­di­tions are get­ting bet­ter on the ground 48 34 15 Voted for the health care law 45 40 14 Sup­ports chan­ging the Con­sti­tu­tion to pre­vent chil­dren of non-cit­izens born in the U.S. from auto- mat­ic­ally be­com­ing cit­izens 34 48 15 Has the en­dorse­ment of the Tea Party 30 36 29 Voted to give fin­an­cial as­sist­ance to the auto in­dustry when it was in crisis 28 45 26 Voted to give fin­an­cial as­sist­ance to the bank­ing in­dustry when it was in crisis 22 51 25 Has been an in­cum­bent for many years 16 35 43 Cam­paign was aided by ads paid for by anon. busi­ness groups 9 47 41

If GOP­ers Win Con­trol Of Con­gress In The Nov. Elec­tions, Do You Think Things Would Get Bet­ter/Worse For ___?

- Bet­ter Worse NoChange The wealthy 69% 11% 16% Large cor­por­a­tions 69 13 13 Banks 57 18 18 Small busi­nesses 54 33 10 The U.S. eco­nomy 50 36 12 The middle class 46 40 12 Un­em­ploy­ment 45 35 16 The fed­er­al budget de­fi­cit 44 38 15 For you per­son­ally 41 29 27 Co­oper­a­tion bt­wn parties in Con­gress 30 45 20

Obama Hand­ling ___

- Ap­prove Dis­ap­prove Re­la­tions with oth­er coun­tries 55% 38% Health care 49 40 Eco­nomy 43 53 Cre­at­ing jobs 42 53 Budget de­fi­cit 35 60 Policies on trade with China 28 39

Do You Think The U.S. Can Win The War In Afgh­anistan, Or Do You Think It Is A Lost Cause?

- Now 7/12(RVs) Can win the war 31% 36% Is a lost cause 60 58

Should The Health Care Law Passed Earli­er This Year Be Re­pealed Or Not?

Re­pealed 47% Not re­pealed 42

(For more from this poll, please see today’s BLOOMBERG WH ‘12 story.)

Throughout this year’s elec­tion, I will pose and an­swer key ques­tions at crit­ic­al mo­ments dur­ing the cam­paign. On New Hamp­shire primary elec­tion day, I shared the five things I was watch­ing for.

Here is how it all shook out.

GOP Can­did­ate Mitt Rom­ney after the New Hamp­shire Primary (CNN).

1. What was the mar­gin of vic­tory?

Four years ago, Mitt Rom­ney snagged 32.6 per­cent of the vote, but lost the New Hamp­shire primary — even though he had gov­erned a neigh­bor­ing state — to Sen. John Mc­Cain. This time he ar­rived with Mc­Cain at his side, and with a threshold to meet: Ec­lipse his 2008 second-place fin­ish or fall short of ex­pect­a­tions.

By the time the votes were coun­ted on Tues­day night, Rom­ney had scored nearly 40 per­cent of the vote, even with four oth­er Re­pub­lic­ans act­ively cam­paign­ing in the state, and an­oth­er in­act­ive but still on the bal­lot.

Run­ner-up Rep. Ron Paul clocked a dis­tant 23 per­cent. And former Utah Gov. Jon Hunts­man, who staged a minor comeback in the cam­paign’s clos­ing days, scored al­most 17 per­cent to come in third.

These mar­gins mat­ter be­cause, head­ing in­to South Car­o­lina’s Jan. 21 primary, Rom­ney’s most vig­or­ous com­pet­it­ors ap­pear to be the guys who landed in the dis­tant single di­gits — Newt Gin­grich, Rick San­tor­um, and Rick Perry.

Ex­pect those three to make a vig­or­ous next — and per­haps last — stand in the Pal­metto State.

Mo­mentum is tough to stop once it be­gins. And in a year when voters say what they want most is to de­feat Barack Obama, Rom­ney’s goal is to be­come a con­sensus can­did­ate as quickly as pos­sible. Gal­lup re­ports he has gained 10 points na­tion­ally since Christ­mas.

2. Can Jon Hunts­man sur­vive?

An­swer: Kind of.

Hunts­man began lower­ing his defin­i­tion of suc­cess days be­fore the New Hamp­shire primary, telling me he only had to ex­ceed “mar­ket ex­pect­a­tions.” Well, since the mar­ket had largely coun­ted him out, that was not hard to do.

He did re­bound a bit, but it re­mains un­clear how Hunts­man — per­ceived as mod­er­ate at best and an Obama par­tis­an at worst — can make his mark with a more con­ser­vat­ive elect­or­ate. Plus, since Rom­ney began flaunt­ing his dom­in­ance with­in days of the New Hamp­shire win (mul­tiple en­dorse­ments, $19 mil­lion in the bank), Hunts­man is go­ing to have to start match­ing that right away if he is to be taken ser­i­ously in Flor­ida on Jan. 31.

3. Does Ron Paul have a path for­ward?

Sure. It’s hard to see if that path takes him to the ac­tu­al White House, but Paul draws crowds, changes minds, and of­ten man­ages to cut through the muck.

Wit­ness his de­fense of Rom­ney against at­tacks from Gin­grich and Perry this week over his back­ground as a ven­ture cap­it­al­ist.

GOP can­did­ate Rep. Ron Paul ad­dress­ing sup­port­ers in Hol­lis, N.H. (Flick­r­CC/Gage Skid­more)

Shouldn’t Re­pub­lic­ans be ap­plaud­ing busi­ness, not tak­ing after someone who did well at it? Rush Limbaugh and Sean Han­nity agreed, and sud­denly Paul was in the Re­pub­lic­an main­stream again. With one caveat.

Exit polls show Paul did as well as he did in New Hamp­shire be­cause he ap­pealed, not to re­gistered Re­pub­lic­ans, but to new voters who did not have to de­clare a party. These people were of­ten Demo­crats who chose to vote in the GOP primary. It will be in­ter­est­ing to see how well he fares in a closed primary that does not al­low such cros­sov­er vot­ing.

4. Was Rick San­tor­um’s Iowa break­through an an­om­aly?

Maybe. But he nev­er had much of a chance to score an up­set in a state like New Hamp­shire, where Re­pub­lic­ans think of them­selves more as fisc­al con­ser­vat­ives than so­cial con­ser­vat­ives.

However, in a year where great chunks of money are ar­riv­ing in the form of su­per PACs seem­ingly every day, and in a state like South Car­o­lina, where ad­vert­ising is so much cheap­er to buy, he may yet be able to gain some trac­tion.

5. How low will Newt go?

He can’t seem to make up his mind. Al­though Gin­grich def­in­itely has Rom­ney in his sights, he ap­pears to shift the in­tens­ity of his at­tack from day to day. The Gin­grich ads take on Rom­ney for chan­ging his mind on abor­tion, and he has also faul­ted Rom­ney for his private sec­tor back­ground. Gin­grich also seems to real­ize he has to give voters someone to vote for — not just against.

But at what point does Gin­grich be­gin to real­ize how much am­muni­tion he is hand­ing Demo­crats? Rom­ney sup­port­ers are anxious to re­mind oth­er Re­pub­lic­ans of that fact, in part with a non-subtle su­per PAC-fun­ded ad that says in part that, “Newt at­tacks be­cause he has more bag­gage than the air­lines.”

All of the at­tacks, coun­ter­at­tacks, and bag­gage will be on dis­play between now and the South Car­o­lina primary. I’ll be on the ground for the PBS News­Hour and Wash­ing­ton Week next week to pose five more ques­tions.

What We're Following See More »
House Plans to Recess on Friday
2 hours ago
Manafort Subpoenaed by Judiciary Committee
2 hours ago

"The Senate Judiciary Committee has subpoenaed Paul Manafort to appear publicly before the committee on Wednesday. Committee leaders Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) announced Tuesday that they had subpoenaed Manafort on Monday night."

US Navy Ship Fired Warning Shots at Iranian Boat
2 hours ago

"A US Navy ship fired warning shots at an armed Iranian patrol boat Tuesday in the northern end of the Persian Gulf, according to two US defense officials. The Iranian boat is believed to have been operated by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, according to a defense official familiar with details of the incident. The officials said the Iranian boat approached and came within 150 yards of the US ship." The Iranian boat didn't respond to warnings. Fearing collision, the Navy ship fired warning shots into the water and then the Iranian ship stopped, but lingered in the area.

Trump Floats Cruz for AG
2 hours ago

"President Trump and his advisers are privately discussing the possibility of replacing Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and some confidants are floating prospects who could take his place were he to resign or be fired, according to people familiar with the talks." Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) is one prospect. But "in a statement released late Monday, Cruz said he is 'deeply gratified that we have a principled conservative like Jeff Sessions serving as Attorney General. The stories being reported in the media tonight are false. My focus is and will remain on fighting every day to defend 28 million Texans in the U.S. Senate.'"

Shutdown Odds Grow with Wall Funding
3 hours ago

"House Republicans this week are increasing the possibility of a government shutdown in October by moving forward with a $788 billion spending bill that complies with President Donald Trump’s demands to boost the military, reduce clean-energy programs and fund a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Those priorities, especially $1.6 billion in wall funding, guarantee House and Senate Democratic leaders will oppose the bill. Trump has urged his Republican supporters in Congress to fight, saying in May that a 'good' shutdown may be needed to advance his agenda."


Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.