Public's First Reaction to Ryan Worse Than Palin

But polls conflict somewhat
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 13, 2012 2:21 PM CDT
Public's First Reaction to Ryan Worse Than Palin
Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan greet the crowd during a campaign event at the Waukesha County Expo Center, Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Mitt Romney didn't exactly wow the public by picking Paul Ryan as his VP—at least according to one poll. Just 39% think Ryan is an "excellent" or "pretty good" pick, compared to 42% who think he's a "fair" or "poor" one, according to a new USA Today/Gallup poll. To put that in perspective, that's worse than both Sarah Palin (who got a thumbs-up from 46% of respondents) and Dick Cheney (55%).

Indeed, Ryan is the least-popular pick from either party since Dan Quayle, the Washington Post points out. Of course, the Romney campaign has been quick to downplay the result. "All these numbers indicate is … that Rep. Paul Ryan was not a nationally known figure," says a campaign pollster. And there is some good news: Polls from last week show that, prior to being named VP, more people had a favorable view of Ryan than an unfavorable one. For more poll fun, check out Nate Silver's piece calculating how likely it is Ryan will be, as Mitt Romney accidentally dubbed him, the next president. (More poll numbers stories.)

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