September 16, 2010 - Kasich Has Double-Digit Lead In Ohio Gov Race, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Independent Voters Back Republican 2-1

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Republican challenger John Kasich has a 54 - 37 percent lead over Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland in the race to be Ohio's next chief state executive, with much of his lead due to overwhelming support among independent voters, according to a Quinnipiac University poll of likely voters released today.

Kasich, a former congressman and Fox News host, holds even larger leads over Gov. Strickland when voters are asked which candidate would be better rebuilding the state's ailing economy and handling the state budget, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University survey, conducted by live interviewers, finds. This first general election measure of likely voters in Ohio for this election cycle can not be compared to earlier surveys of registered voters.

Kasich leads among men 60 - 31 percent and gets 47 percent of women voters to Strickland's 45 percent. Kasich leads among Republicans 91 - 4 percent and 55 - 32 percent among independent voters. Strickland leads 84 - 8 percent among Democrats.

"Independent voters often decide elections in Ohio and Kasich leads among the unaffiliated by 23 points. Not only that, but John Kasich does slightly better among Democrats than Strickland does among Republicans," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"There are almost seven weeks until Election Day, but Gov. Ted Strickland has his work cut out for him. One reason for the size of Kasich's lead is that Republicans and anti-Obama independents and Democrats seem more enthusiastic about voting this year."

"Ohio is not an island. Clearly Kasich is benefitting from the national anti-incumbent, anti- Democratic wave which seems to be sweeping the country," said Brown. "Ohio, which is the most important swing state in the country come presidential elections, is also a good marker for the off- year balloting. If Kasich were to lead a Republican sweep in Ohio, it would be a good indication that the Republican landslide many are predicting nationally might come to fruition."

The vast majority, 85 percent, of likely voters who choose a candidate say their mind is made up, while 14 percent say they might change their mind. Strickland support is a little softer as 19 percent of his backers might change their minds, compared to 11 percent of Kasich supporters.

Likely voters disapprove 59 - 34 percent of the job Strickland is doing and give him a negative 52 - 36 percent favorability rating. Kasich is viewed favorably by 47 percent and unfavorably by 27 percent with 24 percent who don't know enough about him to form an opinion.

Voters say 55 - 32 percent that Kasich would do a better job than Strickland rebuilding the state's economy and 54 - 32 percent that he would do a better job handling the state budget.

"Kasich even has a 53 - 35 percent lead over Strickland when voters are asked who most shares their values, a measurement that tends to favor Democrats," said Brown. "Often Republicans win because voters see them as the more competent, but at this point Kasich is seen not only better able to do the job, but also more in tune with voters' values."

Ohio voters are among the most pessimistic in the country. Only 2 percent say they are "very satisfied" with the way things are going in Ohio and another 21 percent say they are "somewhat satisfied." A total of 77 percent are "somewhat dissatisfied" or "very dissatisfied."

"With more than three out of four voters unsatisfied with the way things are going in Ohio, it's no surprise that Gov. Strickland trails so badly. In bad times, governors and presidents pay the political price and since Barack Obama is not on the ballot this year, Ted Strickland is the focus of unhappy Ohioans," said Brown.

From September 9 - 14, Quinnipiac University surveyed 730 Ohio likely voters, with a margin of error of +/- 3.6 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Ohio and the nation as a public service and for research. For more data or RSS feed- http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling.xml, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter.
1. If the election for Governor were being held today and the candidates were Ted Strickland the Democrat and John Kasich the Republican, for whom would you vote? (If undecided q1) If you had to choose today, would you vote for Strickland or Kasich? This table includes "Leaners".
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Strickland           37%     4%    84%    32%    31%    45%    20%
Kasich               54     91      8     55     60     47     72
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       2      2      1      3      2      1      -
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      -      -      -      -      -      -      -
DK/NA                 7      4      6     10      7      7      7
 
 
1a. (If express choice q1) Is your mind made up, or do you think you might change your mind before the election?
                     LIKELY VOTERS........
                            CAND CHOICE Q1
                     Tot    TS     JK
 
Made up              85%    80%    88%
Might change         14     19     11
DK/NA                 1      1      1
 
 
2. (If voting for Strickland) Is your vote for Governor mainly for Strickland or against Kasich? (*subgroup not large enough to report)
                     LIKELY STRICKLAND VOTERS..........................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep*   Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl*
 
For Strickland       62%           67%    52%    60%    64%
Against Kasich       28            23     42     32     24
DK/NA                10            10      6      7     12
 
 
3. (If voting for Kasich) Is your vote for Governor mainly for Kasich or against Strickland? (*subgroup not large enough to report)
                     LIKELY KASICH VOTERS..............................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem*   Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
For Kasich           53%    61%           49%    51%    57%    52%
Against Strickland   42     35            48     44     40     41
DK/NA                 4      5             3      5      3      7
       
 
4. Is your opinion of - Ted Strickland favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Favorable            36%     9%    73%    32%    34%    39%    20%
Unfavorable          52     81     12     57     59     44     68
Hvn't hrd enough      9      8     11      9      6     12     10
REFUSED               3      2      3      2      1      4      2
 
 
5. Is your opinion of - John Kasich favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Favorable            47%    78%    12%    46%    55%    37%    59%
Unfavorable          27      5     53     26     24     31     17
Hvn't hrd enough     24     15     33     26     20     29     22
REFUSED               2      2      2      2      1      3      2
 
 
16. Which one of these four qualities matter most in deciding how you vote for Governor? The candidate is honest and trustworthy, has the right experience, can bring about needed change to Columbus or shares your values?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Trustworthy          24%    16%    35%    22%    19%    31%    29%
Experience           10      5     18      8      9     11      3
Change               27     34     20     27     27     27     23
Shares values        36     43     25     38     42     28     43
DK/NA                 3      2      3      6      3      3      3
 
 
17. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Strickland           32%     2%    73%    28%    28%    37%    16%
Kasich               55     90     13     55     60     48     70
NO DIFF(VOL)          3      1      3      6      4      3      2
DK/NA                10      7     12     11      8     13     12
 
 
18. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you think would do a better job - handling Ohio's state budget Ted Strickland or John Kasich?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Strickland           32%     3%    67%    31%    27%    38%    18%
Kasich               54     84     20     53     61     46     68
NO DIFF(VOL)          3      1      4      4      4      2      2
DK/NA                11     12      9     11      9     13     12
 
 
19. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you - trust more to do in office what they say they will do during the campaign Ted Strickland or John Kasich?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Strickland           33%     2%    72%    31%    29%    37%    17%
Kasich               51     85     14     50     57     45     69
NO DIFF(VOL)          5      2      4      9      6      4      2
DK/NA                10     10     10     10      8     13     11
 
 
20. Regardless of how you intend to vote, who do you - believe most shares your values Ted Strickland or John Kasich?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Strickland           35%     3%    78%    29%    31%    39%    16%
Kasich               53     88     13     53     60     46     70
NO DIFF(VOL)          3      1      3      4      3      3      2
DK/NA                 9      8      6     14      6     12     12
 
 
21. When Barack Obama campaigns for Ted Strickland does that make you more likely to vote for Strickland, less likely to vote for Strickland, or doesn't it make a difference?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
More likely          11%     1%    28%     7%    11%    11%     4%
Less likely          36     63      6     36     36     36     55
Doesn't make diff    52     35     64     57     52     52     41
DK/NA                 1      -      1      -      1      1      1
 
 
22. Which type of candidate would you prefer to see as governor, someone with years of government experience or a government outsider?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Experience           47%    36%    76%    35%    43%    51%    42%
Outsider             41     50     16     51     47     34     49
DK/NA                12     15      8     14     10     14      9
 
 
23. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Ted Strickland is handling his job as Governor?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Approve              34%     4%    74%    32%    31%    38%    16%
Disapprove           59     91     16     64     64     53     80
DK/NA                 6      5     10      5      4      9      4
 
 
26. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in Ohio today? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Very satisfied        2%     0%     4%     1%     2%     2%     0%
Smwht satisfied      21      4     49     14     17     25     13
Smwht dissatisfied   32     34     31     32     40     24     24
Very dissatisfied    45     62     16     52     41     49     62
DK/NA                 1      -      1      -      1      1      -
 
 
27. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Ted Strickland is handling the economy?
                     LIKELY VOTERS.....................................
                                                               WtBrnAgn
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Evnglcl
 
Approve              31%     2%    71%    25%    29%    33%    12%
Disapprove           63     93     20     69     67     59     83
DK/NA                 6      4      8      6      4      9      5