There's been some perturbation in Sarah Palin's orbit since the end of the presidential campaign. The new NBC News / Wall Street Journal poll finds a statistically significant drop in her favorability numbers since July; only 26% of Americans have a positive response to her versus 42% who regard her with suspicion. CNN's version of the same question lumps together the "mostlies" and pushes respondents to make an assessment. Palin's favorability rating rises to 42%; her unfavorability rating rises to 52%.
CNN's new numbers dig into her personal characteristics. A majority of Americans view Palin as honesty and trustworthy, two thirds believe she is a good role model for women, but more than 70% believe she is not qualified to be president.
Former AR Gov. Mike Huckabee's numbers are very solid. His favorables are at 42%, but he's viewed unfavorably by 26%, which means that he has room to build on his support. Not surprisingly, he's the plurality choice for the GOP nomination, garnering 36%. In February, Palin took 29% in the same poll as compared to Huckabee's 26%.
These numbers reflect footprints based news coverage and popularity right now. Assessments can and do change, rapidly. But unfavorable ratings are hard to dislodge. Since Palin's is based on her perceived lack of experience, one presumes that she would do well to gain experience if she wants to run for president.
Marc Ambinder is a senior fellow at the USC Annenberg Center on Communication Leadership and Policy.