2016: In Alaska, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul top Sarah Palin, who loses to Hillary Clinton

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Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,Marco Rubio,Paul Ryan,Alaska,Polls,2016 Elections,Rand Paul,Ted Cruz,Campaigns,Chris Christie,John McCain,Sarah Palin,Jeb Bush,Mike Huckabee

In Alaska, the torch has been passed.

Six years after then-popular Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was plucked by Sen. John McCain to fill out the 2008 GOP presidential ticket, she has been eclipsed by the Tea Party generation’s Sens. Ted Cruz and Rand Paul in a 2016 presidential preference poll.

And even worse for Palin: She’d lose to Hillary Clinton in the general election, the only Republican named in the PPP poll who the likely Democratic nominee beats.

“It’s been more than five years since Sarah Palin quit as governor of Alaska, and there’s no evidence that her Image is getting any better,” said Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling.

More proof: Only 21 percent of Alaskans think she should run for president, and they view her unfavorably, by a 55 percent to 36 percent margin

As for the new faces, Cruz and Paul top the list of those Alaskans want to run for president in 2016. And in a matchup against Clinton, Paul won with the biggest margin, 50 percent to 36 percent. Palin would lose to Clinton, 40 percent to 46 percent.

Alaska’s pick for 2016 GOP nominee:

Sen. Ted Cruz: 16 percent

Sen. Rand Paul: 15 percent

Mike Huckabee: 14 percent

Jeb Bush: 12 percent

Gov. Chris Christie: 12 percent

Sarah Palin: 11 percent

Gov. Scott Walker: 7 percent

Rep. Paul Ryan: 6 percent

Sen. Marco Rubio: 5 percent

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at