With 17 electoral votes up for grabs, Michigan is an extremely important state in any presidential election. Public Policy Polling has a conducted a poll specifically in Michigan about Obama’s chances of winning that state in the 2012 election. What they found was unless Mitt Romney secures the Republican nomination in the 2012 primaries, Obama can expect to win that state with very little effort against other potential 2012 contenders such Sarah Palin or Mike Huckabee. Romney is the only potential Presidential 2012 candidate that can turn Michigan into a swing state in 2012:
“Compared to the Republican field Obama’s numbers look stratospheric. Only Romney is viewed favorably by a plurality of voters in the state, with 39% holding a favorable opinion to 37% with an unfavorable one. Beyond him the GOP field ranges from slightly unpopular (Mike Huckabee’s 37/40 favorability) to very unpopular (Newt Gingrich’s 28/50), to extremely unpopular (Sarah Palin’s 34/60). What might be most striking for the Republicans beyond Romney is their numbers with independents. Huckabee’s net favorability with them is -14 (29/43), Gingrich’s is -39 (20/59), and Palin’s is -40 (28/68).
At this point it looks like Michigan would be a swing state in 2012 only if Romney secured the nomination. He trails Obama 47-43 in a hypothetical contest. Obama crushes the rest of the Republican field by margins pretty comparable to what he received against John McCain in the state in 2008- it’s 12 points over Huckabee at 51-39, 15 over Gingrich at 52-37, and 21 over Palin at 56-35.
There’s not a lot of variability across the four match ups with Democratic voters- Obama gets 87-91% of his own party’s voter regardless of the Republican. There are major differences with independents though. Obama leads Romney by just a single point with them but that margin expands to 21 points over Huckabee, 27 over Gingrich, and 36 over Palin.”
As candidates ponder running against Obama, they cannot ignore Michigan nor can they afford to lose the 17 electoral votes. Yet, if the election were held today, Palin, Huckabee and Gingrich would have to concede the state to Obama and hope that they can pick up another state with a large electoral vote in order to win the Presidential election.
Republicans cannot afford to ignore Michigan nor can they afford to allow Obama to be in office for another four years. For conservatives, independents and TEA Party members desiring to make Obama a one term president, the only way to stop him is helping Mitt Romney secure the Republican nomination in 2012. He is the only person who can make Michigan become a competitive state against Obama. And knowing Mitt Romney, he wouldn’t easily concede the state to Obama.
Competing against Obama in Michigan works in Mitt Romney’s favor. He knows that state well; he was born in Detroit. At the age of five, the Romney family moved to Bloomfield Hills and he spent most of his childhood and teenage life there. George W. Romney, Mitt’s father, was also a well known and highly respected citizen of that state who worked as the CEO of a large car company you may have heard of – American Motors Corporation. Furthermore, when Romney announced his decision to run in the 2008 election, he chose to make his announcement in the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. Finally, Romney captured the state during the Republican primaries.
Given that Governor Romney can put Michigan into play 2012 while other potential Republican candidates would lose by double digit margins, he becomes an attractive candidate for Americans looking to put Obama in the unemployment line in 2012.
~ Jared A.
Hat tip to Crystal, a MRC fan, for notifying us about this poll.