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Wicker In Solid Shape For Re-election

April 8, 2011

Earlier this week, we had some details on Sen. Roger Wicker’s first 2011 fundraiser as he preps for re-election in 2012. Almost as if this was planned, Public Policy Polling has some data on Wicker’s re-election. The short answer: Wicker is as safe as any incumbent in the country. Let’s look at some of the details.

Wicker has a +28 approval rating with 51 percent approving versus 23 percent disapproving. At 26 percent, his unknown numbers are still a little high. But throughout the crosstabs, he is in solid shape. Wicker is equally popular among men and women (there is usually a gender gap), has a 33-29 approval among Democrats, has a 46-36 approval among independents, and even has strong numbers for a Republican with African-Americans at 26 approving versus 31 disapproving.

When matched head-to-head with five of the most prominent Democrats in the state (none who have given any indication of running), Wicker beats them all by at least 10 points. Wicker would defeat Travis Childers 51-33, Jim Hood 50-36, Mike Moore 48-38, Ronnie Musgrove 52-35, and Gene Taylor 48-36. Moore has always been regarded as not just one of the most popular Democrats in the state, but one of the most popular politicians overall. I’d say his ship has sailed.

Among primary voters, 72 percent say Wicker’s ideological leanings are “about right.” Nine percent say Wicker is too liberal. That bodes well for Wicker who may be concerned with a Tea Party backed challenger, but against an unnamed “more conservative challenger,” Wicker leads just 40-39.

2012 presidential primary: As one would imagine, Haley Barbour would win his home state in the GOP primary should he run for president. He leads the field at 37 percent. Mike Huckabee, also very popular in the state, would capture 19 percent. Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin would each get 10 percent, while Mitt Romney was down at six percent. Mississippi is just one state, but I think this underscores Romney’s inability to win in the South, especially with someone like Barbour or Huckabee in the race.

Without Barbour in, Huckabee is at 35 percent, followed by Sarah Palin at 20 percent and Newt Gingrich at 18 percent. Romney doesn’t move much, just up to eight percent.

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