FOLLOWING MONEY IN 2016 PRESIDENTIAL POLITICS

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Pollster Dubs Arizona Senator John McCain "Least Popular Senator In Country"

(Please view this accompanying sidebar article that explains the "Least Popular" moniker, and includes response from PPP.)

A new poll of Arizona voters finds that only 30% approve of Arizona Senator John McCain's job performance, leading Public Policy Polling ("PPP") to call him the "Least Popular Senator In Country".

Only 35% of Republicans polled gave the longtime Senator - and, the party's 2008 Pesidential nominee - a thumbs up, slightly ahead of Democrats (29%) and independents (25%).  Overall, 54% disapprove of McCain's job performance.

Arizona's other Senator, Jeff Flake, has a smaller approval number than McCain's (27%), but also has fewer people disapproving of his performance (47%).

PPP does not make it entirely clear, but their "Least Popular" tag probably does not mean that they polled McCain's - or, other Senators - numbers nationally, but that no other Senator has higher disapproval numbers among their state's voters.

McCain has upset large numbers of active Arizona Republicans, as evidenced by the censure votes at the state party level and among local party organizations.  He has likely angered Democrats and independents with his steady criticism of President Obama's foreign policy.

In October, 2012, McCain's popularity was strong among Arizonans, as reported by PPP.  51% of all voters approved of his job performance, including 2/3 of Republicans, 41% of independents and 32% of Democrats.  (Overall approval/disapproval was 51%-39%.)

The pollsters also questioned Arizonans about a few possible 2016 Presidential matchups.  Though Texas Senator Ted Cruz polled the most support among GOP respondents for the nomination (16%), the poll did not pose a hypothetical matchup between Cruz and Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush was the only Republican who out-polled Clinton, 45%-44%.  Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee all trailed Clinton by three to six percentage points.

The poll - which released some of their numbers yesterday - was conducted between February 28 and March 2, and was an automated phone poll with 20% questioned via the internet if they do not have landline phones.


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