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Conservative Preferences

The following comes from PPP Crosstabs, which contains useful crosstab data, and measures Conservative Favorables of potential 2012 GOP candidates. Brief analysis at the end.

Conservative Voters Favorability ratings


Palin +48 (70-22)

Huckabee +47 (67-20)

Romney +29 (57-28)

Gingrich +29 (57-28)

South Dakota

Palin +35 (63-28)

Huckabee +41 (60-19)

Romney +23 (47-24)

Gingrich +29 (53-24)


Palin +33 (63-27)

Huckabee +28 (56-28)

Romney +22 (52-30)

Gingrich +20 (49-29)


Palin +62 (77-15)

Huckabee +59 (71-12)

Romney +44 (64-20)

Gingrich +52 (67-15)


Palin +55 (72-17)

Huckabee +54 (69-15)

Romney +34 (55-21)

Gingrich +44 (60-16)

South Carolina

Palin +24 (57-33)

Huckabee +56 (73-17)

Romney +23 (50-27)

Gingrich +33 (56-23)

West Virginia

Palin +63 (75-12)

Huckabee +78 (84-6)

Romney +44 (60-16)

Gingrich +59 (69-10)

New Jersey

Palin +51 (72-21)

Huckabee +58 (70-12)

Romney +45 (64-19)

Gingrich +53 (68-15)

North Carolina

Palin +43 (67-24)

Huckabee +51 (64-13)

Romney +24 (45-21)

Gingrich +31 (54-23)


Palin +41 (67-26)

Huckabee +58 (71-13)

Romney +19 (49-30)

Gingrich +23 (53-30)


Palin +34 (60-26)

Huckabee +49 (67-18)

Romney +29 (54-25)

Gingrich +35 (57-22)


Candidate-by-Candidate Analysis


The Good News: Not surprisingly, conservatives love Sarah Palin. Out of the 11 states polled, she has the highest favorability in 7 of the states, and has the second highest favorables in the other 4 (trailing Huckabee). The other good news for Palin, of the four candidates polled, her biggest competitor for conservative voters, Huckabee, is also the least likely to run of the candidates (with Romney and Gingrich near definite candidates). Conservatives are also the most likely to vote in primaries, and are statistically the most politically knowledgeable, and more likely to be political junkies than Republicans who do not identify as conservative. Translation: She is regarded highly by those interested in politics, which makes their minds hardest to be changed in the long run.

The Bad News: Conservatives like Palin, but will they vote for someone deemed “unelectable”? If Huckabee runs, they would split many conservative voters. While she placed first or second in overall favorables among conservatives, her net favorable/unfavorable gave her 4 #1 rankings, 4 #2 rankings, and 3 #3 rankings, meaning she also had a bump in conservatives who give her higher unfavorables than Huckabee and Gingrich


The Good News: Ranks #1 in 7 States in Net Favorable/Unfavorable, and ranks #1 in 4 States in Overall Favorable (Second to Palin in the rest). He is clearly the second most favorable candidate after Palin, and thus most of “The Good News” for Palin equally applies here.

The Bad News: He occupies much of the same space as Sarah Palin. The good money says the Huckabee is waiting for Palin to announce if she is running or not. If Palin runs, her cash flow and crowds will be hard impossible to beat. Huckabee had financing issues in 2008, falling well behind McCain, Romney, Paul, Giuliani, and even Fred Thompson (who waited until the general election was over to announce he was waiting) in funds raised. If Palin announces, she probably nets more money in a day than Huckabee can in a month.


The Good News: Conservatives have short memories? That can only explain Gingrich’s decent numbers among conservatives. Gingrich has had a few good years. By that, I mean he hasn’t been “The Gingrich Who Stole Christmas” for quite sometime, and hasn’t really been attacked as a monster by the media for years anyway.

The Bad News: He is already unpopular with moderates, and among conservatives he is either 3rd or dead last in almost every state in favorables and net favorables. Plus, when Gingrich’s past resurfaces (affairs, dumping wives’ with cancer) plus his Green and Amnesty problems…. well, let’s just say we have a candidate for first to leave the primary process.


The Good News: Not much. Romney’s strength lies with moderates, liberal Republicans, and conservatives who think he “has the best chance”

The Bad News: Conservatives like Romney the least of everyone…. even Newt Gingrich. Conservatives are the most active, vocal, and reliable grassroots voting bloc in the GOP. Despite continuing his 2007 conversion attempt to become the “ideal” conservative, Romney has not caught on with conservatives. In 4 states, Romney couldn’t even get good marks from more than 50% of conservatives. He scored best in new Jersey, with 67% of Conservatives liking him. By compairson, 7 States gave Palin at least 67% Favorability ratings, making Romney’s ceiling Palin’s floor. Obviously, Romney’s strength rests with moderates. The question is how many moderates will be in the race.

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