Palin Loves Alaska, But the Feeling Isn't Mutual

Only 33 percent of Alaskans have a favorable opinion of the ex-governor

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Alaska doesn't care for Sarah Palin. In fact, other than (predictably) Massachusetts, the ex-governor's home state has the "dimmest" view of the reality TV star in the entire nation. That's one of the takeaways in Public Policy's Polling's new report, which paints a discouraging portrait of the Sarah Palin's drooping favorability ratings across America and on her home turf. Only 33 percent of Alaskans have a favorable opinion of Palin, and only 60 percent of Alaskan Republicans have embraced her (as opposed to 80 percent of the GOP faithful in "most places" across the country). Needless to say, the "lamestream" media had a few pieces of advice for the still-undecided presidential hopeful.

  • 'She Shouldn't Have Quit After Half a Term' notes Washington Monthly's Steve Benen: "Some political figures weighing national bids enjoy considerable support from those who presumably know them best--their home state's voters. But as Republicans get set to announce, we see a field in which several prominent candidates--Palin, Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney--have effectively been told by their former constituents, 'Don't bother.'"
  • Alaska Poll Only Compounds 'Dour' Current Outlook  That said, at RealClearPolitics, Scott Conroy offers few words of encouragement for the ex-governor: "Palin demonstrated in the 2010 election her affinity for the underdog when she backed long-shot candidates from Joe Miller to Christine O'Donnell with mixed electoral success, and she has never been one to be dissuaded by discouraging polls."
  • A Symptom of a 'Much Wider Problem'  Doug Mataconis at Outside the Beltway points to PPP's discouraging favorability numbers nationwide: "There was a time when Sarah Palin had the highest approval ratings of any Governor in the U.S., upwards of 80% according to one poll taken before she was named John McCain’s running mate in August 2008, but those times are long, long gone."
  • Her Unpopularity in the State Was an 'Open Secret' writes Slate's David Weigel, who proceeds to dissect the psychology of the poll numbers. "People come to Alaska to strike out and get rich--in gold, on the oil pipeline, on fishing boats," he figures. "But Alaskans don't bail on the state to get rich elsewhere, and that's obviously what Palin did in July 2009. She kept her home base in the state while making money as a political pundit Outside. As she did this, Alaskans visiting other states, who were once asked about bears or Deadliest Catch, were asked some variation of the question "ooh, ooh, can you see Russia from your house?" So this is a very specific, provincial kind of popularity plunge."
  • 'Familiarity Breeds Contempt?' poses Business Insider's Glynnis MacNichol, noting that Gallup polling had once found her to be one of the most admired women. Even if Alaskans dislike her, "knowing Palin, she will somehow manage to turn this into a campaign platform," she quips.

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