U.S. voters had mixed view of Ross Perot, review shows

By Clyde Hughes

July 10 (UPI) -- The U.S. electorate held a mixed view of Texas billionaire and former presidential contender Ross Perot, who died Tuesday after a years-long fight with cancer, pollster Gallup said in an analysis Wednesday.

Perot became the most successful independent presidential candidate in modern history during his 1992 run, when he received nearly a fifth of the national popular vote. His family said Perot died of leukemia Tuesday at the age of 89.


In a retrospective of survey figures during the campaign, Gallup said its first poll on Perot showed 32 percent of voters held a favorable view, compared to just 10 percent who saw him unfavorably. Nearly 60 percent had no opinion, or didn't even know who he was.

Favorability climbed to 52 percent within three months, at which time Perot dropped out of the race. When he returned weeks later, his support had dwindled to 20 percent.

When he ran again in 1996, initial positive views on Perot polled at 38 percent before they fluctuated and landed again at the same figure by election day, Gallup said. At that time, nearly half of all respondents held a negative view of the Texan.


"The percentage of registered voters who viewed Perot favorably declined after the election, and in Gallup's last reading on him, in March 2000, 28 percent viewed him favorably, while 62 percent had an unfavorable opinion," Gallup wrote.

Though he ran as an independent, the Boston Globe reported Wednesday Perot donated twice this year to President Donald Trump's re-election campaign.

Forbes estimated Perot's net worth at $4.1 billion at the time of his death Tuesday.

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