I saw it quickly yesterday and dismissed it, since it was commissioned by World Net Daily and "Wenzel Strategies," whoever they are. After seeing a bunch of other people get all jazzed up as the day went on, though, I decided to give it a closer look. It's not Gallup, but for the time being, it's the only poll that provides a general election prediction by voter affiliation, so it'll have to do.
The number that jumps out the most is that 20.2% of Republicans say they'd vote for Obama over Mitt Romney
, with most of those (11.9%) saying they'd definitely vote for him. The poll says there's a margin of error of 3.44% here, but even if it's twice that and 12 or 13% end up supporting the President, that's a large rebuke of the GOP's message and their overall strategy this election season.
In my view, the reason this number might be so high is because Obama hasn't turned out to be the bogeyman many expected. Yes, most Republicans still don't like the guy and many are still convinced he's the devil incarnate, sent by Saul Alinsky and Joseph Stalin's love child to turn the U.S. into Sweden. Many quiet, well-meaning Republicans are probably also impressed that the President has fought an aggressive and balanced war against Islamic extremists, and has presided over a slowly-improving economy. The 9% of Republicans who supported Obama in 2008 probably feel that they got what they bargained for. A handful of others would have voted for him then if they knew Obama would turn out to be the centrist he claimed to be.
Sure enough, 19.1% of Republicans polled said that Obama has exceeded their expectations
, and 17.3% say he has performed as expected. A conservative interpretation of those numbers seems to say that almost 1 in 5 Republicans are impressed with how the President has done, in spite of the wars and significant economic challenges he's faced.