Thursday, October 20, 2011

Unsurprising News

File this AP report under "Well, duh!".

Americans have yet to find a Republican they'd clearly prefer over President Barack Obama, although half say the president does not deserve re-election.

First of all, it's no secret that President Obama is not the most popular of men after nearly three years in office. The GOP has been relentless in its refusal to cooperate on even the most basic of issues, including the usually routine raising of the debt limit when necessary, with the man they promised would serve only one term. Additionally, the president himself has done nothing more than extend all of the worst programs of the last administration, thereby alienating the liberal base which played a large part in his election. And, of course, the economy is still in the toilet for most of us.

Second of all, and perhaps more important, the 2012 election is still more than a year away. We haven't had anything but a couple of non-binding, pay-to-vote straw polls to date for Republican candidates, all of whom are still trying to formulate their policies after seven very curious debates. It's simply too early to tell what the electorate has in mind. But the press needs a horse race to cover, so many of them are commissioning these polls to keep the narrative going.

At any rate, here are the numbers as of the day before Tuesday's debate in Nevada, which means the numbers might very well be already out of date:

In the poll, Romney was the choice of 30 percent of Republicans, with Cain about even at 26 percent. Perry was preferred by 13 percent, and Rep. Ron Paul of Texas topped the list of those in single digits. ...

Among all adults, regardless of party identification, 21 percent say they'd like the GOP to nominate Romney. Eighteen percent name Cain, 13 percent Perry and 11 percent Paul.

The first real test, that is, a primary or binding caucus vote, will come no earlier than December. If Nevada backs down from its threatened date, the first test will be the New Hampshire primary sometime in early January, 2012. Even then, there still would be eight months to the conventions and eleven months to the election. There's still plenty of time for the electorate to make up its mind.

I guess it would be too much to ask the media to cover more important issues at this point, like the 112th Congress and its failure to get things done which would actually help define the issues for the election.

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