OH-Gov: Teddy Ballgame Down 10

Public Policy Polling (8/27-29, likely voters, 6/26-27 in parens):

Ted Strickland (D-inc): 40 (41)

John Kasich (R): 50 (43)

Undecided: 10 (16)

(MoE: ±4.5%)

This does not bode well:

The race has pretty much shaped up as a referendum on Strickland and that is not to the incumbent’s advantage. Only 34% of voters in the state approve of the job he’s doing while 52% disapprove. Republicans are now almost universal in their disapproval of him at 83% while Democrats are a little more divided in their support of his work at 67%. Independents go against him by a 59/26 margin as well.

The biggest change since PPP’s last poll of this race, before they had shifted over to a likely voter model, is that Kasich went from a 73-12 lead among Republicans in June to an 89-5 advantage now. All this while Strickland claims the support of 78% of Democrats and the sample went from voting for Obama by 50-44 to having pulled the lever for McCain by 48-45.

Ted Strickland has run a good campaign, but he can’t make the weather.

90 thoughts on “OH-Gov: Teddy Ballgame Down 10”

  1. This is even worse than the Rasmussen poll today of 47-39 Kasich. I do expect this to come a bit closer as Strickland goes on a ferocious last ditch offensive against Kasich in the final weeks of the campaign.

    Hopefully he can get it close enough to where Fisher has a fighting chance against Portman, although I’m starting to lose hope in that race as well.

  2. I had this race as a tossup, but it appears to be slipping away.  It is now on the lean Republican column.  

  3. a good enough governor. If voters perceived him as good they would be more inclined to vote for him over a flawed Republican candidate. It’s not just the economy; part of political talent lies in giving off an air of competence and doing the right thing, enough so that even when things are great people feel like you’re doing everything possible. Strickland appears to not have that sentiment, based on the overwhelming disaprovals.  

  4. Yeah that will improve the economy.  Portman the Bush outsourcer and budget man running up deficits and Kasich the Wall Street bankster.

    People get the government they deserve.  Ohio will probably vote Republican in 2012 Presidential election as well.  


  5. Ohio will never get its economy back… not without massive tariffs, which will never happen, so every governor in the last decade has left with abysmal approval ratings and has been rocked in elections.

    This election will be a real test of the Strickland machine, which performed so admirably the last few cycles.  If he can get 75% of that performance, he will still be competitive.

  6. Kasich and some 527 ads have dominated the airwaves all summer, although Strickland had a nice ad out back in May.

    Is every Dem taking the Sestak strategy this year?

  7. If Ohio votes for the very people that bankrupted their state and cost them all their jobs, then (i) Dems suck at politics, and (ii) Ohio gets what it deserves.

  8. Ohio’s polling has been a bit volatile this year.  It wasn’t all that long ago when Strickland was ahead.  I’m not ready to write him, or Fisher, off yet.  Let’s see what the post-labor day polls say.

  9. And saw Portman: Bush Administration Job Outsourcer, and some how tried to connect that to our recession and job loss today, Fisher would easily win.  Same goes for Kasich: Wall street banker, people like him caused the bailout, this race should be over for indies.  What the hell is in the water in Ohio?!

    These two morons are such horrible fits for Ohio, that fact that they are leading in the polls is sickening too me, but you know what, Ohio will just crash and burn if that happens, so maybe they will learn their lesson.

  10. As with North Carolina, this poll shows Strickland performing better than previous polls.

    Last poll had a sample of Obama+6.  This sample is Mccain+3.  That is 9% shift.  Strickland was losing by 2% last time.  Making the sample 9% more Mccain-friendly only caused Strickland to lose 8 points.

    The Obama voter no-show rate (relative to McCain voter turnout rate) PPP projects is 15%, which is less than NC, PA, WI, DE and about the same as WA.

    So while this poll is slightly more favorable for Strickland, it just shows again that the main issue for his reelection comes down to what the actual Obama no-show rate is.  

    He still does underperform Obama though by 7 points, and Obama only won by 4 points, so he’ll lose even with a 0% Obama no-show rate, unless he changes of at least 2% of the voters between now an election day.  2% is certainly doable, but unlike Elain Marshall who has already taken some net Mccain voters, Strickland is still losing net Obama voters.

  11. It’s been pretty obvious for a while now. I’ve been expecting it to end up a lot like 2002, when 20 governor’s mansions changed parties.

  12. Ohio was roughly +3 Bush in 2004 though.  Nobody should expect the 2008 electorate will remain forever.

  13. should continue to trend Democratic steadily in the most parts of the country, or at least trend more progressive. Unless Obama’s unpopularity sinks or quagmires the entire progressive movement.  

  14. For instance, Rasmussen’s most recent IA-Gov poll was bad for Culver but had his approval at 37 percent. PPP had Culver’s approval at 28 percent–several other midwestern governors also have approval ratings in the 20s, according to PPP.

  15. Ohio has an aging and largely white working-class population that is exactly the group hat has been trending against the Democrats everywhere else except in 2006.

    In fact, Obama barely improved here on Kerry at all. He only won here because McCain lost more Bush voters than Obama lost Kerry voters.

    If you look at history, the embrace of the “inevitability” argument almost always prefaces disaster for the movement doing so. Democrats embraced it post-2000 with books like the Emerging Democratic Majority only to be swamped in 2002 and 2004, and the GOP talked of permanent majority after Bush’s second election. The argument attempts to use demographics as a substitute for effective policy or messaging, and its always a sign that the group pushing it is in trouble

  16. is not obliged to do anything. It’s not obliged neither to become more Democratic, nor is it onliged to become more progressive. According to my observation – electorate became substantially more conservative since November 2008. May be the reason is an exaggerated expectations of that time (and disenchantment with Obama and his politics which followed), but that’s literally palpable

  17. and only in certain states, based primarily on immigration (assuming one accepts the premise of Ruy Texiera’s “Emerging Democratic Majority”)

    I do not see any evidence that immigration is having an impact in OH, certainly not to the levels of other major states like CA, NY, etc.

    Even if immigration were having a significant impact on OH, it is being slowed by the recession — and the nature of the year (I suspect) is overwhelming such slower trends.

    Bottom line — I expect a relatively more R electorate in OH than ’04.

    (Proviso — where the heck is OfA? They’re the one group that may have the tools to change the game in places like OH.)

  18. I think the evidence actually points in a direction that neither party really wants.  The polling points to the country becoming more socially liberal, but it is also pointing to a strong aversion to higher taxes, more spending, and government in general.  

    This trend will continue as long as the country continues to become more college educated and less blue collar.

  19. in parts of Ohio–I haven’t looked at the county breakdown, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s highest in the Democratic areas.

  20. People’s perceptions of politicians as ineffectual is going to generally come from exogenous factors rather than some sort of innate character or messaging.

  21. These numbers make little sense from that standpoint… This has to be purely a result of the national environment.  Strickland’s biggest problem has been his base, and national trends make it impossible for him to get the crossover appeal he enjoyed for so long.

    Strickland’s not finished yet, but he’s not an “exciting” candidate, which makes it harder for him to come from behind.

    I also question PPP’s “likely voter” model… their non likely model was stingy enough… they seem to be overdoing it now.

  22. It seems for the last 2 weeks there have been polls in a few states where Ras is the most favorable to the Dems.  

  23. Not in others. Rothenberg has a piece basically saying how marvellous he is and people (Dems) were foolish to doubt him when PPP are showing similar numbers. No mention of the polls that don’t match. Namely in NC, LA, CO, MO and CA.  

  24. Majority turned out to be more accurate than you give it credit for, and it would have been accurate in 2002 and 2004, only Republicans were riding a national security wave. But once that was over, the electorate ended up looking exactly like those guys predicted it would.

  25. Ohio dem house districts are located in the more blue parts of the state, and will be contested heavily by OFA, unions, etc. as a part of holding onto house seats.

    Strickland’s #1 problem is turnout… if that can be improved, the Ohio house can be saved.

  26. It takes decades for such changes to take effect. If we talk about year 2050 here – yes, of course…

  27. …but definitely possible… If the national dems abandon Ohio completely, though, which is possible, then forget it.

  28. falls right in line with Rasmussen. Their last poll, LordMike, showed an Obama +5 electorate in an Obama +4 state. Their last poll was obviously an extreme outlier.

    And Strickland is likeable? Is that why his approval is 34/52??

  29. I read that article yesterday, he mentions exactly 3 races which Rasmussen is not an absurd outlier in comparison to other polls, and he thinks that makes his point.  It’s really embarrassing that someone like Rothenberg now writes articles which are designed to appeal solely to the (1) uninformed, and (2) Fox viewer.

    If you want to see something funny, check out Rothenberg’s articles in the summer of 2006 about how Democrats were DOOOMED.

  30. Yes, he is likeable… I know many independents and (sane) republicans, and they all speak well of him.  

    He lost his crossover appeal when Obama won the election and his previous conservative supporters decided to get more partisan as a result.

  31. I think it was off the mark, as I expect Obama turnout to be relatively less than Mccain turnout.. but what percentage of Obama do you think will not turnout in Ohio?

    Put another way, in 2008 there were 102 Obama voters for every 94 McCain voters.  

    In 2010, for every 100 Mccain voters who turn out, in your opinion what amount of Obama voters will turn out?

  32. that with Japan’s lack of immigration and low birth rate, there will only be 500 people left at the end of the millenium?

    In effect trends almost never pan out completely the way you expect them to.

  33. has been ahead in every poll since June. Quinnipiac constantly has Strickland up, and they polled RV.

    Besides that, there hasn’t been much pro-Strickland.

  34. He’s getting minimal DSCC moneys…

    I know that the DCCC won’t abandon the state, which is the main thing that can keep Ohio in the race against one party GOP rule.

  35. We might be nearing the point where being tied to Bush is less toxic than being tied to Obama.  The Bush v. Obama poll is interesting in that regard.  It shows at least that people are warming to Bush and souring on Obama.  

  36. Like Pennsylvania, they cannot abandon the Senate or Governor’s races in Ohio or it could easily cost the House.  Even if Portman and Toomey are up by double digits, the Democrats simply cannot let the entire ticket fall of the face of the Earth in either state or they could easily lose 8 House seats in Pennsylvania and Ohio combined.  If they could pull of that feat, the Republicans would only need to win 32 more seats in the rest of the country to win.  Considering Pennsylvania and Ohio combined count for only 8.5% of the seats in the House, things would be bound to be ugly.

  37. I’ve read that they’ve abandoned Marshall, Fisher, Lincoln and aren’t supporting McAdams. The DSCC has tons of money and Schumer/Gilibrand are both sitting on tons of money they can give to the DSCC as well. Why aren’t they supporting these candidates? The money can’t all be going to KY and MO.

  38. I do think that it would have some effect if used correctly, and it is the best attack that Fisher has right now so he might as well use it.

  39. Rile up the union vote by tying words such as “CAFTA” and “outsourcing” to Fisher.

    Still, the ‘Blame Bush’ mantra is accurate.  I mean, the Republicans used Jimmy Carter as a scapegoat for 12 years.

  40. I’ve seen exactly one ad buy from Portman so far, an introductory positive ad that he ran in early August.  He has most definitely NOT been blitzing the airwaves, at least not on radio or television, unless he is doing so totally outside of NE Ohio.  

    No, the scary thing is that he has built a bit of a lead without much advertising.  

    The governor’s race on the other hand, man, the RGA, 527 groups, and Kasich are all HAMMERING Strickland day and night.  The man is under siege, and the unfortunate thing is that he’s had to go negative already, which I think is a huge mistake.  No positivity at all from the Strickland campaign at the moment, which is what voters are looking for, a reason to feel good about the future.  If he’s going to go the John Corzine route and go exclusively negative, then he’d better hope to hell it works, if it backfires he’s looking at a 20+ point loss.

  41. True, the best off counties are in R-leaning suburban/exurban areas, but the liberal bastions are generally doing fine.  Here are some really blue counties and where they stack up to the statewide average:

    Franklin county (Columbus) – 9.0%

    Erie county (Sandusky) – 9.2%

    Cuyahoga county (Cleveland) – 9.6%

    Lorain county (Elyria) – 9.7%

    Athens county (Athens) – 9.8%

    Summit county (Akron) – 10.2%

    Ohio statewide average – 10.3%

    Mahoning county (Youngstown) – 11.7%

    Lucas county (Toledo) – 12.1%

    9 of the top 10 counties in unemployment went for McCain in 2008, as did 17 of the top 20.

    disclaimer – all of the following data is as of July 2010

  42. I love John Kasich; he’s one of the few people to balance the budget at the federal level.  He’ll be a great governor and I’m glad he chose the right year to run in.  Even better if he gets both state houses GOP to work with; Ohio needs someone like Kasich – I wish I could vote for him, but I’m in FL and our choices are lousy.

  43. a McCain +1 to McCain +3 electorate is appropriate in Ohio.

    I know you like to criticize PPP’s polls where they have a lot of Obama supporters not showing up, but don’t forget, Obama ran a great campaign in Ohio in 2008, and there is going to be a higher no show rate here, because of all the first time voters that aren’t coming back. We should see a 2004 Ohio Bush/Kerry electorate this time around.

  44. Since in most states at least 80% of Dems who vote will vote Democratic and at least 90% of Republicans will vote Republican. Independents look to be going Republican by about 60-40. In other words the most important number is self-reported party ID and that is likely to move at least 6 points towards the GOP since 2008.

  45. has tended to show that highly educated people, outside the south, tend to accept and be open to the role government plays in economics.  

  46. and self-identified party affiliation is completely different.

    Once again, there are two ways for the electorate to shift: some voters not showing up, some voters changing their minds.  Self-identified party affiliation does not comment at all on changed votes, Obama versus McCain does.

    In other words, many people who did not vote in 2008 will vote in 2010 (most obviously 18-19 year olds).  These apathetic-in-2008 voters may break heavily for the Republicans, but they are not accounted for in the Obama/Mccain numbers, because they didn’t vote for either.  The universe of Obama/McCain voters is set.  There aren’t any current 18 year olds who voted for Obama or McCain.

    PPP does a service reporting Obama/McCain numbers because they show precisely the Obama no show rate relative to the Mccain turnout, and the relative change between those 2008 numbers and their polls… so we can see Marshall net winning some Mccain voters while Strickland is net losing some Obama voters.

    When you say “In other words the most important number is self-reported party ID and that is likely to move at least 6 points towards the GOP since 2008”, you are talking about a totally different measure.  A 6 point move can occur because some Obama voters change to say they are Republicans… they can not change who they voted for in 2008.  These are completely different ways to look at the electorate.  And I personally am willing to accept any sort of change of mind, but assertions of massive no-showing are a very different kettle of fish.

  47. People say with regard to their 2008 vote for president. They do not weight for what actually occured hence the reason the measure sometimes looks odd. That happens in a random sample.

  48. but will be lower than the biggest relative no show states… South Carolina (partly because of Greene), Virginia, North Carolina.  

    The relative Obama to Mccain no show rate will be different in every state… and PPP just projected a Mccain no-show rate of 10% relative to Obama turnout in Alaska.

    I think Mccain +1 is certainly plausible… that represents about a 10% Obama no-show rate relative to Mccain turnout.  +3 might be possible too, but 14% no shows starts to get very implausible as exit polls showed a dip in AA voter percentage in 2008 compared to 2004 and 2006.  Unlike NC or Virginia, there was no huge spike in AA turnout in Ohio.

  49. I thought you knew.  

    If these were random samples, then variations were just a failure of them to get a random sample.  But they do not produce random samples.  They deliberately weight the samples, and they have moved that weighting drastically.

  50. I think that is the key and the Democrats have been very bad at using the Bush Blame card so far.  Attempting to tie everything to Bush simply does not work.  It has to be used wisely.  I suspect that it will not work especially if its used in every race for everything.  Right now, I think too many Democrats think blaming Bush is the answer to their problems.  Blaming Bush will get old at a certain point.

  51. The reason we have so many open seats this time is term limits, which I am very opposed to.  I think the electorate should be able to select the same idiot as many times as they please.  I am not sure if eliminating term limits would really help the Democrats here though.  Most incumbents are polling very poorly.

    In terms of timing of races, most states have set their gubernatorial and other statewide races on a different timetable from federal elections so they are not buried by the Presidential race.  Other states its because they amended their Constitution at a certain time that made such a yearly schedule logical.

  52. It’s just another question. No lying required.

    And as documented earlier, ’09’s results shows that the numbers of Obama voters who actually show up is not relevant to the result.

  53. “One final note: we do not weight our polls for party or 2008 vote or anything like that- just fixed demographics of gender, race, and age. So the level of Democratic dropoff we show is not determined by our guesses, but by who says they’re going to vote this fall and answers our polls.”

    When I first read that I thought it might even have been intended for you.

  54. The polling is pretty consistent that people with professional or terminal degrees lean left, but they are actually a small subset of what I consider individuals with higher education.  Individuals with some college or a college education tend to lean right on economic issues.  Professionals tend to lean closer to the center than those with PhDs too.

  55. …It’s going to be absolutely awful for education…

    This will be the first teabagger ever elected in Ohio and it’s going to be very ugly, especially if it’s one party rule.  

  56. But how do they vote in state elections???  This is an important distinction.  The areas with the highest unemployment in Pennsylvania almost universally went for McCain in 2008, but almost universally vote Democratic in state office elections (Governor, State Senate, State House).  I would assume many of the areas in southern Ohio that have high unemployment send a ton of Democrats to Columbus.

  57. Those RGA ads are absolutely terrible, the fact that they are pushing Kasich over the top is unreal.

    In the one, a bunch of people are sittiong around an office while a phone rings in the background chit-chatting about how “Strickland lost 400,000 jobs”. I want to shout at these d-bags that if don’t get back to work, they’ll be next! What terrible optics, yet its working.

  58. Actually he has a pretty moderate stance on education by focusing on cutting administrative costs, which are absolutely out of control in many states.  From working in local government and now working for a law firm that has some school district solicitorships, I have never seen a district without this problem.

    This is a real issue that the Democrats should be all over.  If I was a teachers union leader, I would be more focused on cutting administrators and spending the money on the kids and teachers.  Such an agenda would be popular with teachers, who generally hate administrators breathing down their necks, and parents.  It is an electoral winner and I do not understand why Democrats have exploited it at all.

  59. Quite a stretch to call Kaisch a teabagger.  He’s been fairly consistent in his positions from when he was first in congress.  He was even awarded recognition by the GOP class of 1994 as being an honorary one of them for his (ultimately successful) efforts to balance the budget.

  60. …at a Tea Party rally, he identified himself as the first ever teabagger–way before tebaggers were cool.

  61. You must be the only one on the planet who thinks a poll of 100 MCcain voters will show the same results as 50 Obama voters and 50 Mccain voters.  And there is a difference between 2 Obama voters not showing up, and one Obama voter changing his mind.

    And “likely voters” is not an on/off switch, 100% or nothing.  For once, click the link and see what they asked.  There is no likely voter methodology shown there.

  62. He will do well.  Ohio likes moderate governors… but Kasich has never been a moderate… the prospect of him running the state is frightening.

  63. Reid, Schumer, Gilibrand, Boxer, Murray, and Lincoln all have plenty of money. The only incumbent who might need some cash is Feingold. The DSCC can’t blow all that money on Feingold’s race.  

  64. Its kind of hard to gauge this because the last 2 gubernatorial elections were blowouts for one side or the other.

    Strickland won all but 1 county east of I-71 and Taft in 2002 may have gotten an 88 county sweep, IIRC.  

  65. The data presented suggests in one case an –inverse– relationship. In the other case, it shows an essentially –0– relationship.

    The only way to — statistically — discount the NJ and VA results as outliers is to have 8 or 10 actual elections that show otherwise (depending on the statistical method chosen).

    And you have yet to present evidence of even –one– election that shows otherwise.

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