Nearly one-in-three voters don’t like the way the 2012 presidential race is shaping up for now in the two major political parties.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 30% of Likely U.S. Voters, given a choice between President Obama and one of the potential Republican presidential candidates, thinks 2012 would be a good year to consider electing a third-party candidate. Fifty-three percent (53%) disagree and say electing a third-party candidate would not be a good option with the current likely candidates. Another 18% aren’t sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
A plurality (46%) of voters not affiliated with either major political party favor the idea of electing a third-party candidate if faced with a match-up of Obama and one of the likely GOP candidates.
Fifty-one percent (51%) of Republicans and 69% of Democrats, on the other hand, don’t think 2012 is shaping up as a good year to consider electing a third-party nominee.
Fifty-four percent (54%) of voters view Obama as qualified to be president, but former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is the only Republican 2012 hopeful that a sizable number of voters considers qualified for the White House. Forty-nine percent (49%) say Romney is qualified to be president.
In weekly surveys since the beginning of May, however, support for both the president and a generic Republican have remained in the narrow range of 42% to 45% in hypothetical 2012 election matchups. Last week was the second week in a row where the generic Republican edged ahead of the president.
“This data reminds us that Election 2012 is first and foremost going to be a referendum on President Obama,” noted Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports. “His record and the state of the economy will overshadow just about anything the Republicans do.”
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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on June 9, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
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