A new McClatchy-Marist poll shows that former vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin is behind President Obama by five points and that Mitt Romney is even closer, results that come at a time of record low presidential approval.
Sept. poll results show that if registered voters had to choose that day between Obama and Palin, 49 percent would vote for the president and 44 percent would vote for Palin.
This was a far cry from the organization's Aug. poll numbers, which showed that if Obama and Palin were to run against each other, 56 percent of voters would vote for Obama while 35 percent would vote for Palin.
Poll results show that if Obama ran against Romney, he would get 46 percent of votes to Romney's 44 percent.
But whether Palin could win the 2012 presidential election remains to be seen, as she has not even announced a bid to run.
And the voting public has yet to see a consistently solid Republican candidate emerge from the current pool.
On the one hand, President Obama's re-election numbers are very low, Marist College Institute for Public Opinion director Lee Miringoff said. On the other hand, no GOP potential opponent has stepped up to the plate and demonstrated sufficient electoral power to beat him.
So what are the profiles of Obama supporters if he were to run against Palin?
Eighty-four percent of Democrats said they would vote for the President, as did 15 percent of Republicans, and 43 percent of Independents.
Those with moderate and liberal political ideologies were more likely to vote for the President.
Women were also more likely to vote for Obama than men, as were non-white voters.
In addition to Romney, voters were also asked to choose between other confirmed Republican presidential contenders and the President.
Sept. poll results show that if voters had to choose between Obama and Michele Bachmann, 53 percent would vote for the president and 40 percent would vote for the latter.
If voters had to choose between Obama and Rick Perry, 50 percent would vote for the former and 41 percent would vote for the latter.
Republicans and Republican leaning independents were asked who they would vote for if the party's primary was held that day.
Thirty percent said they would vote for Perry, followed by 22 percent who would vote for Romney and 12 percent who would vote for Bachmann.
The rest of the Republican contenders listed had less than 10 percent of the votes, and 15 percent of voters were undecided.
Polls were conducted on Sept. 13 and 14.