How much chance does health care reform have in Arkansas if Arkansans trust Rush Limbaugh more than Barack Obama?
The new survey of Arkansas from Public Policy Polling (D) finds the state to be very conservative, very Birtherist, and very much opposed to President Obama on health care -- despite the fact that the state's Democrats are typically dominant and hold all major offices right now.
Only 40% approve of President Obama's job performance, with 56% disapproving -- matching up pretty closely with John McCain's 59%-39% victory here in 2008. In addition, only 45% say Obama was born in the United States, with a strong 31% saying he was not, and 24% unsure. Among Republicans in Arkansas, the Birther question comes up as 23%-49%-28%.
On health care, only 29% support Obama's plan, with 60% against it. In addition, respondents were asked whether Rush Limbaugh or Barack Obama has the better vision for America: Limbaugh 55%, Obama 45%. And keep in mind that this is a state where Dems have both Senate seats and three out of four House members
Statistics like this can have a real impact on politics. From the pollster's analysis: "These numbers, taken together, show why Blanche Lincoln's Senate seat is becoming an enticing target for Republicans in spite of their candidate recruitment issues," said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. "There are few states that have an electorate more conservative than Arkansas' and if the GOP can effectively nationalize the race it'll be close."