That's the thought of Pollster.com's Mark Blumenthal, who writes that Gov. Sarah Palin's base "was big and in many ways comparable to where Obama
started." Thus, as of last week at least, she was the Republican best positioned
to emulate Obama's tactical model for seeking the nomination.
Blumenthal's point is that Palin, though having the highest negatives among adults among all potential 2012 candidates, had by far the best positive ratings among Republican activists, eclipsing by more than 20 points the favorability number attached to the second-place Mitt Romney. Extrapolating a bit, we can posit that Palin starts the race -- or would have started the race -- with a hard corps of true believers, perhaps even larger than Romney's -- and had the most room to grow, at the same time. Blumenthal writes: "The Pew numbers show that Palin's base as of June 2009 was as strong as Obama's
on the eve of the 2008 campaign. Consider two numbers: Palin's "very favorable"
rating last month on the Pew Research survey among all adults was 15%. Obama's
very favorable score among all adults on a Pew Research survey in August 2007
And then, of course, the similarities end. Put aside your views about
their inherent personal charisteristics: Obama's campaign attracted the
Democratic base because of his identity and because of his stand
against the Iraq war, but Obama's message was consistently forward-looking and targeted to independents who were watching the
Democratic primaries. Obama did not have to face the conviction that he
was not qualified -- something more than half of all Americans believe
about Sarah Palin. Indeed, Obama ran for Senate and stayed in the
Senate precisely because he knew he needed more experience; he did not
resign from office at the point when people were questioning his
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