My bloleague Peter Fenn writes that Sarah Palin's post-Tucson performance has sunk her 2012 presidential hopes. Gallup released new poll numbers yesterday underscoring this point.
According to Gallup, Palin's approval numbers are at their worst level since she ascended to national prominence upon being named John McCain's running mate in 2008. Specifically 53 percent view Palin unfavorably, while only 38 percent view her favorably. That's the same desolate realm occupied by GOP punching bag Nancy Pelosi (33 percent approve, 54 percent disapprove).
By contrast, President Obama is back above water in terms of approval, with 53 percent viewing him favorably and 45 percent disapproving.
As Gallup understates:
...Palin and Obama, two potential opponents in the 2012 presidential election, are now viewed quite differently by Americans, with Palin generally viewed unfavorably and Obama favorably. Palin's increasingly negative image suggests she would be in a relatively weak position for winning a national election unless opinions of her shift in a more positive direction over the coming year.
Even newly installed Speaker John Boehner has a positive profile, 42 percent approving and 22 disapproving. And what do Obama, Boehner, and Palin have in common? Boehner gave a pitch perfect talk on the House floor last week paying tribute to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the other victims of Tucson attacks; on that same day President Obama gave one of the finest speeches of his career in Airzona. Both speeches were worthy of national leaders. [See a photo gallery of the aftermath of the Tucson shooting.]
Then there was Palin's bizarre "blood libel" video and subsequent defense of it. "Don't retreat, reload" is a catchy saying, but it's a bad idea when the public isn't buying what you're selling. [See editorial cartoons about Palin.]