With the midterm election now only two months away, here’s a quick snapshot where the big races stand in the Buckeye State:
The big news is John Kasich seems to be pulling away from the Democratic incumbent Ted Strickland. Rasmussen has Kasich up by 12 points, 52-40, when leaners are added (47-39 when they’re not). Corroborating this is Public Policy Polling (a Democratic outfit) who finds Strickland down by 10 points, a healthy cushion for the challenger. The economy is obviously helping to drive voters away from Strickland, who hasn’t been extremely successful at making a dent in Ohio’s high unemployment rate.
The Senate race is a little tighter but still leaning toward the Republican candidate Rob Portman over the Democrat Lee Fisher. Rasmussen has Portman up by 6 with leaners, 47-41 (44-39 without), and PPP has Portman up by 7, 45-38. It’s a decent lead for Portman but one that he shouldn’t be comfortable about.
Some key House races, all courtesy of RealClearPolitics (might get a bit technical):
- Mary Jo Kilroy (incumbent Dem) trails Republican Steve Stivers by 5 in the 15th CD
- Steve Driehaus (incumbent Dem) trails Republican Steve Chabot by anywhere from 2 to 17 points in the 1st CD (the margins vary in these local polls)
- The 18th CD seat of Zach Space (incumbent Dem) is ranked as Toss Up against Bob Gibbs (no numbers provided here)
- John Boccieri (incumbent Dem in the 16th) trails Jim Renacci by 14 in the lone poll provided
- Tom Ganley (GOP challenger and one-time Senate candidate) trails incumbent Dem Mary Sutton by only 2 in the 13th CD
- Sadly, no poll number for my own district, the 3rd CD, with incumbent Republican Mike Turner facing a Democrat whose name I can’t seem to find at the moment (Update: Joe Roberts! Sorry, Mr. Roberts)
Obviously, we’re getting into the heart of campaign season, and the ads will start up in force after Labor Day. Ohio is a microcosm of the nation as a whole, with Republicans in favorable positions going into September. Anything can still happen, but in Ohio it seems Republicans seems poised to make significant gains (not surprising since Ohio now prefers Bush over Obama 50-42).