Poll: GOP candidates top Obama in hypothetical 2012 race - CNN.com
In a hypothetical 2012 matchup, Huckabee leads Obama 52 - 44 percent, while Romney has a 50-45 point advantage, which is within the poll's sampling error. Obama holds a 49-47 percent margin over Gingrich.
The poll indicates that four in 10 have a favorable opinion of Palin, with nearly half saying they have an unfavorable view.
Romney has a 36 percent favorable rating and a 29 percent unfavorable rating, with 35 percent unsure.
Forty-two percent say they see Huckabee in a positive light, with 26 percent saying they hold a negative view and just over three in 10 are unsure.
Gingrich has 32 percent favorable rating, with four in 10 saying they have an unfavorable view, and 28 percent unsure.Nominating Palin would just about guarantee Obama a second term.CNN also conducted exit polls on Election Day in some of the states that vote first in the presidential primary calendar.
In Iowa, 21 percent of Republicans questioned as they exited the voting booth said that Romney was their likely choice in the 2012 Iowa caucuses, with Huckabee also at 21 percent, Palin at 18 percent, Gingrich at 7 percent and one in five saying they would support another possible candidate.
In New Hampshire, 39 percent of Republicans said that Romney is their likely choice in the state's primary, with Palin at 18 percent, Huckabee at 11 percent, Gingrich at eight percent and 19 percent saying they would back another possible contender.
Twenty-five percent of South Carolina Republicans say Palin would be their likely primary choice, followed by Huckabee at 24 percent, Romney at 21 percent and Gingrich at 10 percent.