Even though Sarah Palin hopped on a bus, released a movie, and flirted with a 2012 run, a new poll from Alaska shows a dark political future.
A new poll by Ivan Moore Research shows that Sarah Palin’s popularity continues to decline in her home state of Alaska. The poll found that only 39% of Alaskans approve of Palin, and 49% of those who know her best disapprove of her. There was an additional 12% who had neutral feelings about the former governor. The Moore Research poll has Palin’s negatives holding steadily between 49% and 51% since March of 2010.
The Dittman Research Alaska Poll taken in March measured Palin’s negatives to be at 61%, but it is telling for a figure to have such low approval ratings in her home state. Part of the Alaskan disapproval is likely related to the fact that half way through her first term Sarah Palin quit on the state in order to go get rich in the lower 48, but mostly we often hear from Alaskans who are willing to speak up about the damage that Palin has done to the reputation of their state. For many Alaskans, having a national punch line as the most well-known figure from their state is particularly galling.
Sarah Palin’s lack of support in her home state is telling omen for her future political prospects. Since polling began, no candidate has ever been elected president without being popular in their home state. Palin is under mounting pressure from her supporters to run for president in 2012. Her entire brand is based on selling herself as the savior of conservative politics who will ride into Washington on her white horse and reclaim the presidency for the GOP. The people who spend money on her books, speaking engagements, and other merchandise do so with the expectation that she is going to run for president.
If she doesn’t run her brand will be seriously damaged, but as the Alaska poll numbers illustrate, Sarah Palin lacks the basic popularity expected of a political figure in her home state. If Palin can’t win in Alaska, she won’t be able to win anywhere else. (This includes the Arizona Senate race or any other fantasy that gets concocted to keep her politically relevant. People forget that if Sarah Palin wanted to be a senator, her best shot would have been to stay in Alaska).
Sarah Palin believes that she is a star. She left Alaska to go national, being liked and being electable are two different things. Sarah Palin is liked within the GOP, but she is not electable. The only way that Sarah Palin stays relevant both as a brand and as a politician is running for president, but a candidacy for any office is destined to fail. Sure if the GOP is fractured badly enough she could win the nomination, but she would be destroyed by Obama in the General Election.
No matter what path is projected for Palin it all leads to the same place, defeat. The second that Sarah Palin quit on Alaska she killed her chance at a successful political career, and by marketing herself as the GOP’s literal Great White Hope, she has also painted herself into a corner. Sarah Palin is on the path to becoming the Alaskan Alan Keyes. Running for president or any other office would be a business decision based on a need to keep the believers spending and supporting her.
The business of Sarah Palin requires her to run and maintain the illusion of relevancy, but as this new poll from Alaska highlights, the political future for Sarah Palin is a dead end street.