Poll: Michelle Obama would be Hillary’s strongest Dem rival in 2016
© Getty Images

If Michelle ObamaMichelle ObamaMichael Reagan: Trump's fighting words rattle Washington Michelle Obama inauguration reactions become Twitter meme Hillary Clinton holds head high as Trump takes office MORE decided to run for president in 2016, she would pose the most significant threat, among likely contenders, to Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonEx-Clinton aide calls Trump spokesman a 'failure' Madonna to critics of women's march: 'F--k you' Women's march takes over DC 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.

ADVERTISEMENT
That may seem like a significant margin, but according to the most recent RealClearPolitics polling average, Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWomen's marches draw huge crowds as Trump takes office Warren: 'I'm here to fight back' Women's march takes over DC MORE, a popular hypothetical challenger to Clinton, receives only 12.5 percent to Clinton's 64 percent.

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders on women's march: Trump 'made a big mistake' Trump speaks with top Dem about high drug prices Sanders supports women marchers with tweet 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.