Edwards' favorable ratings dropped 27 points between July 2004 and January 2008. The decline was the steepest in consecutive polls since Gallup began using its favorable/unfavorable format in 1992, the Gallup Poll said Friday.
The former U.S. senator from North Carolina was Sen. John Kerry's Democratic running mate in 2004 and ran for president early in the 2008 election cycle. He was rated favorably by 21 percent of respondents and unfavorably by 59 percent in the latest poll.
Edwards' favorable rating peaked at 59 percent in late July/early August 2004. Until January 2008, when he withdrew his presidential bid, he averaged a 50 percent favorable rating. The decline has been attributed in part to Edwards' admission of an extramarital affair during his presidential run.
Despite a decline in Palin's ratings, however, Gallup said her ability to stay in the news – particularly since her surprise resignation as Alaska's governor -- may allow her to move from being a vice presidential candidate in one election to being a presidential candidate in the next.
Palin went from a 53 percent rating right after her nomination as Arizona Sen. John McCain's running mate at the Republican National Convention to 42 percent at the time of the ticket's defeat at the polls in November. Her ratings have dropped an additional two percent since then, the poll indicted.
The poll results were based on telephone interviews conducted Oct. 1-4, 2009 with 1,013 national adults. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.