Poll: Obama not vulnerable to 2012 primary challenge

Despite a near-rebellion on the left over President Obama's tax-cut deal with congressional Republicans, he doesn't appear to be in much danger of a serious primary challenge in 2012, at least in the key early state of New Hampshire.

A new Magellan poll commissioned by the New Hampshire Journal found Obama would easily best his 2008 Democratic rival, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. In a hypothetical Obama-Clinton primary match in the Granite State, Obama leads 59 percent to 28. 

The poll also found the president easily besting former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, 78 percent to 10. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) polled at just 8 percent against Obama. 

Over the past couple of weeks, some on the left have hinted at a 2012 primary challenge to Obama, but if one were to emerge, it appears unlikely any of the three rivals mentioned in the Magellan survey would be the candidate to take on Obama.

At least one Democrat has said publicly that he's considering a primary challenge — former Sen. Mike Gravel (D-Alaska), who ran for president in 2008.

Despite the rumblings among some liberals, most top Democrats have dismissed the potential for a serious primary challenge in 2012 out of hand.