Poll: Bush Bests Gore in Rematch

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If the 2004 presidential election were held today, almost twice as many people say they would vote for President George W. Bush as for former Vice President Al Gore.

Over half of registered voters nationwide (54 percent) say they would vote for President Bush compared to 28 percent for Democrat Al Gore, according to the latest FOX News poll conducted by Opinion Dynamics Corporation.  If the presidential race were between Bush and New York Senator Hillary Clinton, the president captures 59 percent to Clinton's 24 percent.

Just over one-quarter of the public thinks Gore should run again for president, and less than half of self-described Democrats (45 percent) think he should run in 2004.  Even fewer think former first lady Hillary Clinton should run -- 20 percent overall and 34 percent of Democrats.

President Bush continues to receive strong job approval ratings.  Over two-thirds say they approve of the job Bush is doing and 20 percent disapprove.  The president's strongest approval ratings come from Republicans (93 percent), men (72 percent compared to 64 percent among women), independents (69 percent) and supporters of military action against Iraq (81 percent).

"It is interesting that despite these high approval ratings, only 44 percent of the public say that they will vote to re-elect Bush," comments Opinion Dynamics President John Gorman.  "While only 21 percent are definitely voting Democratic, fully 35 percent are waiting to see or are undecided.  Of course, whatever reservations people may have about re-electing him, the other questions indicate that the Democrats don't currently have a candidate capable of making the race competitive."

A slim majority (55 percent) thinks President Bush's positions on the issues are "about right," while 20 percent describe him as being "too conservative" and 11 percent say "not conservative enough."  The number today saying Bush's positions are "about right" is down from a high of 70 percent earlier this year, which may have been influenced by the post-9/11 rally effect, but the number is also up from a low of 45 percent during his first months in office.

Is this a job for your kid?  Less than a third of Americans say they would like their child to grow up to be president of the United States (30 percent yes, 60 percent no).  Republicans (29 percent yes) are less enthusiastic about the idea than are Democrats (36 percent yes), and slightly fewer women would want to see their child in the White House than would men (28 percent to 33 percent).

Polling was conducted by telephone November 19-20, 2002 in the evenings. The sample is 900 registered voters nationwide with a margin of error of ±3 percentage points. All results are of registered voters, unless otherwise noted. LV = likely voters

1. Do you approve or disapprove of the job George W. Bush is doing as president?

2. In this November's elections, did you vote for the Republican candidate in your district or the Democratic candidate in your district, or weren't you able to vote?

3. If the 2004 presidential election were held today, do you think you would be more likely to vote (to re-elect President Bush) or (for the Democratic candidate)? (ROTATE)
SCALE: 1. Re-elect Bush 2. Vote for Democrat 3. (Depends on Democrat/too soon to say) 4. (Not sure/undecided)

4. Do you think Former Vice President Al Gore should run for president again in 2004?
SCALE: 1. Yes, he should 2. No, he should not 3. (Up to him) 4. (Not sure)

5. Do you think New York Senator Hillary Clinton should run for president in 2004?

6. Do you think Florida Governor Jeb Bush should run for president in 2008?

7. Thinking about the 2004 presidential elections, if the elections were held today, for whom do you think you would vote if the candidates were: PROBE FOR LEANERS; PUSH FOR DECISIONS; ROTATE CHOICES (Republican George W. Bush) or (Democrat Al Gore)?

8. If the candidates were: (Rotate)
1. Republican George W. Bush 2. Democrat Hillary Clinton 3. (Someone else) 4. (Undecided) 5. (Would not vote)

9. Do you think President Bush's positions on the issues are:
SCALE: 1. Too conservative 2. Not conservative enough or 3. About right? 4. (Don't know)

10. Would you like your child to grow up to be president of the United States? (If no kids: Well, if you had children, would you . . . )