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GOP watch: Palin's standing plummets

The Washington Post says Sarah Palin's "potential as a presidential hopeful takes a severe hit" in a new Post/ABC poll. "Fifty-five percent of Americans have unfavorable views of her, while the percentage holding favorable views has dipped to 37, a new low in Post-ABC polling. There is a growing sense that the former Alaska governor is not qualified to serve as president, with more than seven in 10 Americans now saying she is unqualified, up from 60 percent in a November survey. Even among Republicans, a majority now say Palin lacks the qualifications necessary for the White House."

That said, Time's Joe Klein writes, "The Obama presidency certainly hasn't ushered in an era of comity and prosperity. In the end, though, Palin is offering the opposite of hope and change: despair and stasis. The despair is histrionic and purposefully distorted; the stasis proved disastrous during the Bush Administration. But is Sarah Palin the favorite to win the Republican presidential nomination and therefore someone to be taken absolutely seriously? You betcha."

A day after the RNC fired off an email criticizing DNC Chairman Tim Kaine ("the DNC Dud," it called him), the DNC is now blasting RNC Chairman Michael Steele. In an email to supporters, Kaine says, "'A million dollars is not a lot of money.' That's what RNC Chairman Michael Steele thinks, anyway. To most Americans, that's crazy talk. But it's no surprise coming from the head of a party that prefers favors for Wall Street to jobs on Main Street."

A DNC official tells First Read, "We see it as a defining moment as Americans look at the choice between the parties and which will fight for them. When the head of the GOP bemoans that a million dollars isn't a lot of money it reveals how dangerously out of touch Republicans are with everyday families. It crystallizes, in a very real way, the argument we've been making that Republicans are on the side of the banks, the special interests and well heeled rather than middle class families."