The Washington Times - May 13, 2013, 02:10PM

The Lower 48 may not have seen the last of Sarah Palin.

The controversial ex-Alaska governor and former Republican vice presidential candidate is her party’s top choice in the upcoming race for the U.S. Senate, according to a new Harper Polling survey.

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The poll found that, among likely Republican primary voters in the state, Mrs. Palin would take 32 percent of the vote. Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell is right on her heels with 30 percent, while former Senate candidate and tea party favorite Joe Miller comes in third with 24 percent the vote.

But 14 percent of the Republican primary electorate remains undecided, the poll says, meaning the contest could turn out dramatically different than the Harper survey now suggests.

Mrs. Palin’s favorability rating also is the highest of the three potential candidates. More than 60 percent of Alaska Republicans have a favorable opinion of her, while 30 percent harbor unfavorable feelings toward her.
Mr. Miller and Mr. Treadwell have favorability ratings of 49 percent and 54 percent, respectively.

The winner of next year’s Republican primary will square off in November 2014 against first-term Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who replaced the late Sen. Ted Stevens. Mr. Begich is considered a top target by GOP strategists in the midterm elections.