Poll: Democrats Split Over 2012 Primary

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So reports Marist: Democrats are split almost evenly on whether or not they want someone to challenge President Obama for the party's nomination in 2012.

46 percent don't want a primary; 45 percent do; nine percent are unsure.

Other polls have shown less desire for a primary challenge to the president, and the slim margin of support for the president is a bit surprising. Obama's approval rating among Democrats sits at 81 percent, according to a Quinnipiac poll released last week.

Of Marist's entire respondent pool (Democrats, Republicans, and independents alike), 48 percent say they will "definitely" vote against President Obama in 2012, while 36 percent say they'll "definitely" vote for him and 16 percent were undecided.

Marist also finds that Obama would win a three-way race against Sarah Palin and Michael Bloomberg. Obama would collect 45 percent, Palin would collect 31 percent, and Bloomberg would collect 15 percent, Marist finds.

This follows a Quinnipiac poll earlier this week, in which 49 percent said Obama does not deserve to be re-elected,while 43 percent said he does.

Marist's results come from a national survey of 810 registered voters on November 23, with a total margin of error of +/- 3.5 percent. The Obama-primary findings come from 371 Democrats, with a margin of error of +/- 5.5 percent.

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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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