“Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin remains a top favorite of Republican voters, but she’s also the front-runner they least want to see get the GOP’s 2012 presidential nomination

“These findings include 44% with Very Favorable opinions of Palin and Huckabee and 38% who feel that way about Romney…

“Still, one-in-three likely primary voters (33%) say Palin is the frontrunner they would least like to see nominated. Twenty-three percent (23%) feel that way about former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Fifteen percent (15%) say Romney is their least favorite of the leading candidates and 13% say the same of Huckabee.”

“Different men are made for different moments in life, and Chris Christie’s moment is here. Or, rather, it will be here a year from now, when he gives in to public demand and to destiny and decides to, yes, run for president.

“He wants to run in 2016, when he will be seasoned, but if he is born to run (like somebody else from New Jersey), there are four reasons his moment is now: The nominee must be a new face, formed and shaped by the post-Lehman era; he must be someone who can unite the Tea Party and the GOP establishment; someone who can defuse the race bomb as much as is possible; and someone who can also emerge as the anti-Obama; a creature of deeds, not of appearance; somebody less talk than act.

“People love who Obama is, what he looks and sounds like, but what he does — tripling the debt, and giving us Obamacare — leaves them unsettled. On the other hand, few want to look like Christie, but what he has done — cutting spending, and dissing the unions — looks to be irresistible.

“As such, his theme song is already written: ‘My pudgy Valentine/ Sweet pudgy Valentine/ You make me smile with my heart. …'”

“Barack Obama has an incredibly devout base, made up of a handful of super-loyal constituencies. This includes the roughly 20-23 percent of Americans who are genuine liberals. Alas, that’s another frustration: Conservatives occasionally claim that Obama’s angry left-wing base has turned on him. Nonsense. Sure, liberals fume at Obama now and then, but they’re usually angry. In the end, those liberals will never vote for a Republican as president and against Obama. The left is too disciplined.

“In short, Obama can do practically anything, including worsen an already awful economy, generate unimaginable debts, and retain a lock on a significant portion of the electorate. Beyond that portion, it’s simply a matter of Obama again duping enough of the oblivious — who pay attention to presidential politics only about four weeks every four years — and enough of our nation’s exalted ‘moderates’ and ‘independents.’ These folks are incredibly fickle, often not making up their mind for president until they’re in that voting booth, as they did in November 2008…

“If Americans were willing to elect a man as far to the left as Obama in November 2008 — despite his background, his remarkably radical associations, and his highly troubling and still mysterious background — enough of them will again.”

“We’re looking at different dates for making that decision.”