Palin Leads the GOP Field; Obama Trails Romney

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Sarah Palin is, at this moment, the leading Republican presidential candidate, according to the latest nationwide polling from Quinnipiac University.

The top of the field is cluttered, with Palin, Mitt Romney, and Mike Huckabee all within two percentage points of each other.

While Palin trails President Obama quite significantly in a putative matchup, Romney is the only Republican candidate to poll ahead of the president, according to Quinnipiac's findings. Respondents said 49 - 43 percent that Obama does not deserve re-election--an improvement since July, when respondents answered the same by a margin of 48 - 40 percent.

Today's results are based on a sample of 2,424 registered voters, surveyed by phone Nov. 8-15, for a margin of error of +/- 2 percent. Quinnipiac surveyed 1,011 Republicans and Republican-leaning independents for the GOP primary question, yielding a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percent.

Here are the GOP primary results, from a sub-sample of Republican and Republican-leaning respondents:

Quinnipiac 2012 GOP results Nov 22.pngHere's how each fares against Obama in putative 2012 general elections:

  • Romney leads Obama 45 - 44 percent
  • Huckabee trails Obama 44 - 46 percent
  • Palin trails Obama 40 - 48 percent
  • Mitch Daniels (whose low name recognition, Quinnipiac figured, posits him as a generic Republican) trails Obama 36 - 45 percent

Find below a ranking of the major candidates, including Obama, in terms of differential between favorable and unfavorable ratings. Ratings are displayed in percents as favorable / unfavorable / haven't heard enough to know or refused to say.

  • Huckabee: 41 fav / 25 unfav/ 35 haven't heard or refused
  • Romney: 38 fav / 36 unfav / 37 haven't heard or refused
  • Obama: 48 fav/48 unfav / 4 haven't heard or refused
  • Gingrich: 30 fav / 43 unfav / 27 haven't heard or refused
  • Palin: 36 fav / 51 unfav / 13 haven't heard or refused

And find below the favorable ratings for lesser well-known candidates, whose name recognition appears to be far lower:

  • Tim Pawlenty: 13 fav / 10 unfav / 77 haven't heard or refused
  • Mitch Daniels: 10 fav / 8 unfav / 82 haven't heard or refused
  • John Thune: 7 fav / 5 unfav / 88 haven't heard or refused
  • Haley Barbour: 12 fav / 12 unfav / 76 haven't heard or refused
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Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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