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Poll: If She Runs, Palin Faces Doubts from Public

If Sarah Palin is resigning her position as Alaska's Governor to run for president, she faces doubts – even from Republicans – about her ability to be an effective one, according to a new CBS News poll.

Less than one in four Americans, 22 percent in particular, say she does have the ability to be an effective president. Only 33 percent of Republicans say she does.

Sixty five percent of all Americans, and 51 percent of Republicans say she does not.

In this CBS News Poll, conducted one week after Palin announced she would resign, these assessments are even more negative than they were among registered voters before last year's presidential election. Then, 37 percent of all registered voters thought Palin could be effective if it became necessary for her to take on the job, and 53 percent did not.

But many Americans agree with Palin's criticisms about news media coverage of her. Forty-six percent say the media has been harder on her than they are on other political figures. And that percentage rises to 66 percent among Republicans. Only 7% say the media has been comparatively easier on Palin. Forty-four percent of all Americans, and 29 percent of Republicans, say the media treats Palin the same.

During the campaign, a majority of voters agreed that the media had been harder on Palin than they had been on the other candidates.

And assessment of the media's coverage of the other 2008 female candidate, Hillary Clinton, was much the same as assessment of Palin's coverage: in May 2008, 45 percent of registered voters thought the media had been harder on Clinton than it had been on other candidates.

Read the Complete Poll (PDF)>

This poll was conducted among a random sample of 944 adults nationwide, interviewed by telephone July 9-12, 2009. Phone numbers were dialed from samples of both standard land-line and cell phones. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups is higher. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.
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