Rasmussen: Perry's favorable rating now at ... 25/61

Nice big sample of 1,000 likely voters. To put this in perspective, Palin’s favorable numbers have been cited for the past two years as proof that she couldn’t get elected — and Perry’s numbers here are worse than hers were in nearly every poll that’s ever been taken on her. Among independents (whom Rasmussen polls as “others” when asking about party), he’s at 22/63. I’m mystified. He’s been dreadful in the debates and he messed up badly with his crack about the heartlessness of denying in-state tuition to illegals, but he’s a likable enough guy. Even Ron Paul manages 35/50 in this poll and he has tons of detractors in the mainstream of both parties. And the worst part for Perry is that Ras’s poll was taken on Wednesday and Thursday of this week, after a full day of the brain fart heard ’round the world airing nonstop on cable news. If there was going to be a sympathy bump for him, we’d be seeing it here. Instead, the guy’s radioactive. What happened?

Matt Bai thinks his vapor lock was killer not because it made him look dumb but because it made him look inauthentic:

There’s nothing more central to Mr. Perry’s campaign than the idea of scaling back the government in Washington — that’s pretty much the whole tamale right there — and what he proved last night, in 60 or so agonizing seconds, is that he hasn’t thought deeply enough about it to even master the basics of his own agenda.

What’s really missing from Mr. Perry’s campaign — the vacuum that was exposed in the debate — isn’t smoothness or intellect, but a sense that the man is clear on what the moment demands. It underlies the lingering sense that Mr. Perry is running chiefly because he saw an opening he could exploit, rather than having spent much time thinking about what ails the country and what to do about it.

His money’s starting to dry up too, even as he launches a desperate $1 million ad buy on Fox to try to stop the bleeding:

Fundraising for Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry, who has raised millions since declaring his candidacy in August, has slowed significantly, exacerbated by poor debate performances, sources close to his campaign said on Friday…

“Their fund-raising has ground to a halt. It ground to a halt before the debate this week,”,” said a prominent Republican source familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified…

“I think they are not going to have any money coming in for the next month,” said the Perry fundraiser, who did not want to be named due to the sensitive nature of the situation.

The big winner in Rasmussen’s favorable survey was Romney, the only one of the candidates polled who was above water at 48/42. (Cain clocked in at 37/51 and Gingrich at 38/50.) Romney also leads big in CBS’s new poll on which candidate is most electable, taking 40 percent versus 20 for Cain and just six each for Gingrich and Perry. Old theory: The primary will be a long war of attrition between Romney and Perry. New theory: Romney wins Iowa and then New Hampshire and the nomination is decided by the evening of January 10th. Cain could still complicate that by pulling a Huckabee-an upset in Iowa, but a new poll out today from Insider Advantage shows his lead over Romney there having dropped from 30/15 to 23/19 in just five days. The earlier poll was probably just an outlier — see Karl’s explanation here for why — but given the national trends, I wonder. Exit question: Second look at Gary Johnson?

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John Sexton 1:00 PM on December 05, 2022