Poll: Michelle Obama would be Hillary’s strongest Dem rival in 2016
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If Michelle ObamaMichelle ObamaKim Kardashian says she and Kanye once sang karaoke with Obama Obama talked trash, won money from 3 celebs over golf game Former Michelle Obama aide enters Maryland governor's race MORE decided to run for president in 2016, she would pose the most significant threat, among likely contenders, to Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonAssange meets U.S. congressman, vows to prove Russia did not leak him documents High-ranking FBI official leaves Russia probe OPINION | Steve Bannon is Trump's indispensable man — don't sacrifice him to the critics MORE's chances of winning the Democratic nomination, according to a new Rasmussen poll.

A telephone survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted by the polling company found that in a hypothetical match-up between the current first lady and the former secretary of State, Clinton would best Obama 56 percent to 22 percent.

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That may seem like a significant margin, but according to the most recent RealClearPolitics polling average, Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren: Education Dept lawyer may have violated conflict-of-interest laws Congress should think twice on the Israel Anti-Boycott Act Sanders plans to introduce single-payer bill in September MORE, a popular hypothetical challenger to Clinton, receives only 12.5 percent to Clinton's 64 percent.

Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersThe media couldn't be more blatant in distorting Trump's words on Charlottesville Road to renewable energy is filled with potholes of ‘magic thinking’ Bernie Sanders: Trump’s Charlottesville comments ‘embarrassing’ MORE (I-Vt.), the only other major Democratic candidate in the race for president, is even further behind, with 7.4 percent. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who is expected to announce his bid on May 30, fares the worst against Clinton, with 1.2 percent of support from likely voters.

The first lady is highly unlikely to mount a presidential campaign, however. In fact, of the people surveyed by Rasmussen, just 14 percent thought she should run.

Still, 40 percent of black voters welcomed the idea of her running, and she bests Clinton among those voters, with 44 percent support among African-Americans compared with 36 percent for Clinton.

Obama herself recently joked about a possible October surprise, hinting to "Late Show" host David Letterman that the thought had crossed her mind.