Polls mean absolutely nothing EXCEPT to:
- Determine moods at a particular moment, or,
- Determine a benchmark for trends or future challenges.
NEW INFORMATION repeated over and over again, will impact long term views. We loved Herman until he made 5 foreign policy mistakes. We loved Rick until he kept flubbing debates and then oops-ed. The BENCHMARK of 25% for Romney and 10% (approximately) for both shows us they aren’t EASILY embraced regardless of the new information presented. Polls are good for understanding how support holds up (or not) over time.
With that being said, PolitiJim had a commenter who claimed that Gingrich was “unacceptable” to the majority of Americans which is clearly wrong. Look at Hillary. (Or I should say – her poll numbers.) She could go from an unfavorable rating 9 points higher than her favorable rating, to a reverse of 25 points favorable over unfavorable – anything can happen. Frankly, most people REALLY don’t know these candidates or aren’t paying attention.
The wild swings from one candidate to another was due as much to MORE people becoming informed as it was from people jumping from one candidate to another:
At first i thought 45% NEVER changing candidates was impossible with all the different leaders like Bachmann up 22%, Perry up 34%, Cain up 38%, etc. But it makes sense. Romney has a base of 25% that has never gone away, Paul about 12% and surely there is another 10% between Santorum and Gingrich who have been with them all the way.
The above poll shows the majority that DID switch were Tea Party candidates. And that makes sense. We are the most in search of REAL change not 2 candidates who have run for 8 years.
MOST PEOPLE in the general electorate are still not even paying attention. For instance, on Santorum’s Obama snob slam (about college education), only 42% of all voters were even aware of the comment. Although political news addicts like you and I are aware of nearly every tiny bit of election intrigue, most Americans are still not tuned into this election, nor will they be until late in the summer at earliest. Barely half of Americans knew that Obama called Sandra Fluke:
GOP voters may be more plugged into the GOP race and for now – Gingrich and Santorum are BOTH thought to be equally electable.
But all of that can change in a heartbeat.
Sarah Palin started with a 22% favorable, 11% unfavorable and a 53% “who the hell is she,” rating. As the media and left began fiercely attacking her, those numbers radically shifted eventually reaching 19% favorable and 53% unfavorable at the beginning of the GOP Primary season. Look what happened to Palin’s poll numbers without (virtually) ANY real substance to ANY of the attacks.
No one even knows who Rick Santorum is. To me this is clearly why Palin hasn’t endorsed him and likely won’t. If she with a successful Governorship and an 80% approval rating in her home state had to go through such a shrill and violent “introduction” by the MSM, what will they do to Santorum? Even conservatives haven’t really done their research on Rick in my opinion. But certainly even the tiny bit of coverage he is getting isn’t helping him going from 44% who didn’t have an opinion to a minus 8 point deficit in unfavorable over favorable.
It has been my contention since I started deeply researching each of the candidates since last fall, that Santorum will be unelectable once his history of lies, hypocrisy and financial failings are queued up into the mainstream media’s PA system. The liberal homosexual movement truly is a mafia like structure as Hollywood Producer Brett Ratner and funny man (well some think he is) Tracey Morgan experienced. If the DNC really does have a “campaign ending” bombshell on Rick Santorum, these polls means nothing.
But already GOP voters are less enthusiastic for ANY candidate than they were for John McCain, if you can believe that.
Gallup makes the point that at this point BOTH Hillary and Barack had support of over 50% of Democrats. Democrats certainly don’t have the same standards for their candidates that we do, but infighting must count account for most of that. And with the enormous weight of negative ads (primarily) against Gingrich should we be surprised? It is also no coincidence that voter turnout was down in EVERY state accept those where Gingrich won.
Our OWN conservative media is tremendously at fault here including incidents of:
- George Will declaring the only remaining leader of the Reagan Revolution as a Marxist.
- Drudge promoting false poll results to drive down turnout
- Malkin outright lying about Newt’s record
- Malkin outright ignoring or hiding Santorum’s bad one.
- Limbaugh falsely attacking Gingrich
- Conservative bloggers defending indefensible corporatism
- Major/Minor conservative outlets outright promoting false history about Gingrich Reagan credentials
- Glenn Beck dishonesty on Gingrich, then Santorum.
This entire primary season has truly disheartened me to lack of objectivity and intelligence I thought conservatives had an edge in – if not a corner on the market. Worse, we’ve shown to be every bit as hypocritical and lacking fact based decision making as the liberals we make fun of.
I’ve been ranting since 2008 that Rush Limbaugh personally gave us John McCain by showing his obvious displeasure for Mike Huckabee. And Limbaugh wants it both ways. He self-promotes himself to be the center of the conservative universe and to disavow it at the same time. (Carbonite’s stock plummet gave objective perspective that yes Virginia, Limbaugh influences actions.) And he’s never called on it with many of you rushing to his aid after his “slut” comment you would have castigated a liberal for doing.
I once had a pastor who said that Christians were the only army that attacked their own brethren. You can add conservatives to that list and square it. But I am all for getting the CORRECT information out. We should be honest brokers of THE TRUTH not PR shills for a PERSONALITY.
I just commented on (the wonderful) Maggie’s Notebook the following:
PolitiJim (@politiJim) on March 17, 2012 at 9:41 am
How does a NUMBER 3 placed GOP candidate be the guy shaping the national debate with the President and GOPers think either Santorum or Romney have ANY chance against Obama in a real campaign???
WAKE UP GOP!! You’ve got an All-Star Hall of Fame Conservative loaded and ready for bear. don’t pick the boy scout who hasn’t even gotten his slingshot merit badge or the guy who said he wants gays in the boy scouts!!
I argued back in July that the supposed “skeletons” of Gingrich were non-existent and indeed, even the Marianne attacks not only ended up never registering, truth eventually wins out. (If you missed the PolitiJim comparison of Romney, Santorum and Gingrich electability you can find it here.)
Every Republican will go through intense, unfair scrutiny including Romney. Only Gingrich has gone through the intense “Palinization” and it only set him back temporarily. As he said this week, you can’t pull the same tricks on Georgians who have known him for over 30 years. Anything and everything has been tried there and he is effectively media “immunized.”
Can Romney withstand Bain in Obama’s hands? If he’s so electable as a moderate why haven’t any other GOP moderates won against Democrats? McCain had way more enthusiastic support than Romney among BOTH conservatives who appreciated his pro-life and military service and more support from the media even Democrats like Joe Lieberman. If he’s so good at financial issues and electable among “blue states” how did he end up ranked as 47 out of 50 Governors in job creation and poll numbers in the low 30’s IN A GOOD ECONOMIC CLIMATE?
What’s Albert Einstein quote about insanity? Repeating the same mistake over and over expecting different results?
These polls are proving one thing for certain.
Conservatives sure are no ‘Einsteins.’