POLITICAL observations & opinions

* latest polls show huge decline in voters’ view of Palin’s qualifications

Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 26, 2008

Jon Cohen and Jennifer Agiesta write in the Washington Post …

  • public perceptions of Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin have fallen dramatically since she emerged on the national political scene at the GOP convention.
  • A majority of likely voters in a new Washington PostABC News national poll now have unfavorable views of the Alaska governor, most still doubt her presidential qualifications and there is an even split on whether she “gets it,” a perception that had been a key component of her initial appeal.
  • Palin’s addition to the GOP ticket initially helped McCain narrow the gap with Obama on the question of which presidential hopeful “better understands the problems of people like you,” but at 18 percentage points, the Democrat’s margin on that question is now as big as it has been all fall.
  • Nor has Palin attracted female voters to McCain, as his campaign had hoped. Obama is up by a large margin among women, 57 to 41 percent in the new Post-ABC tracking poll.
  • the intensity of negative feelings about Palin is also notable: Forty percent of voters have “strongly unfavorable” views, more than double the post-convention number. Nearly half of independent women now see her in a very negative light, a nearly threefold increase.
  • The shift in Palin’s ratings come with a pronounced spike in the percentage of voters who see her as lacking the experience it takes to be a good president.
  • Voters were about evenly divided on that question a month and a half ago, but toward the end of September a clear majority said she was not qualified. In the new poll, 58 percent said she is insufficiently experienced.

Read the entire article at … http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/10/24/AR2008102402698.html

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