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Posted at 12:21 PM ET, 02/ 9/2011

Webb, by the numbers

By Jon Cohen

Data tidbits about Democratic Sen. James Webb (VA), who just announced he won't seek re-election...

-Maintained consistently positive numbers, but never moved the approval needle very much over course of term. Late 2009 approval ratings were similar to those two years prior.

Among registered voters (Washington Post poll):

         Approve   Disapprove   No opinion
8/14/09    51          31           18 
9/21/08    54          24           21
10/8/07    52          28           20

-In a December 2010 Clarus poll, Webb and former senator George Allen were neck-and-neck among registered voters in a potential 2012 rematch, with Webb at 41 percent and Allen at 40.

-Webb's razor-thin 2006 victory was fueled by the same basic forces that propelled the Democratic takeover of Congress - broad dissatisfaction with President Bush and the Iraq war, and a big move among the state's independent voters.

From the 2006 Virginia exit poll:

54 percent disapproval of George W. Bush

53 percent disapproval of war in Iraq

Independents split 56 to 44 percent in Webb's favor, marking the first time in available data back to 1994 that a Democrat won this group. Also a major swing from 2004 presidential election. (President Obama and John S. McCain split independents about evenly in 2008; in the 2009 governor's election, Republican Gov. Robert McDonnell won the independents who voted by a whopping 2-1 margin.)

By Jon Cohen  | February 9, 2011; 12:21 PM ET
Categories:  2012 polls, Virginia  | Tags:  #VASEN, 2012 Senate polls, George Allen, James Webb, Jim Webb, Washington Post poll  
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The numbers don't matter. He is not running. The only thing that got him elected last time was George's "mucaca" moment.

Posted by: mortified469 | February 9, 2011 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Senator Webb is a more conservative than I am but his office is constituent friendly and informative. I will be sorry to see him go; not only because I don't want George Allen to be my Senator, but also because Jim Webb has worked hard for Virginia and for our military, and he's a smart, thoughtful public servant in the best sense of that word. This news is not unexpected but it is a loss for the Commonwealth.

Posted by: GreybirdK1 | February 9, 2011 2:12 PM | Report abuse

George Allen has shown himself to be just too, well let's say indiscrete to be trusted in such a position of responsibility. His tenure as governor of Virginia was undistinguished and there was none of the usual clamor to eliminate term limits as his term wound down. "Macacca" shot himself in the foot and you can't run with a limp and win

Posted by: NICKYNUNYA | February 9, 2011 6:51 PM | Report abuse

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