The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

In Ohio, Mediocre Numbers for Obama, Tough Numbers for Kasich


This morning, Quinnipiac’s survey suggests that the OBL-kill impact on President Obama’s poll numbers in Ohio were small or nonexistent:

A new poll shows President Barack Obama’s approval rating in Ohio is little changed following the killing of Osama bin Laden.

The Quinnipiac University survey released Thursday shows 49 percent of Ohio voters like the job the president is doing, while 45 percent disapprove. Obama’s approval was 47 percent in a similar poll two months ago.

Quinnipiac’s Peter Brown says in a statement that Ohio has answered the question of whether there’s a “bin Laden bounce” for the president. He says the White House can’t be happy with the answer.

The state’s voters split 47 percent to 47 percent on whether Obama deserves a second term.

But there’s also some ominous news for Gov. John Kasich, who is encountering staunch opposition to his major labor-reform bill:

Ohio voters disapprove 49 – 38 percent of the job Gov. John Kasich is doing, compared to 46 – 30 disapproval in March, while by 54 – 36 percent they say that SB 5 should be repealed,according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today . . .

“Gov. John Kasich’s job approval has ticked up slightly, but he still has a long way to goto get back even to parity among voters,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of theQuinnipiac University Polling Institute. “Most of his increase has come among independents and women voters who have turned slightly less negative on him . . . Although it is a long way until November when opponents of SB 5 hope to ask voters tooverturn it, at this point there is strong support for repealing Gov. Kasich’s signature plan.”

The text of SB5 can be found here; among other provisions, the bill eliminates automatic pay increases for longevity and replaces it with a merit-pay system for all public workers, and it also says that layoffs no longer can be based solely on seniority.

Fans of Kasich look at the Quinnipiac numbers and note that Ohio voters actually like some provisions by wide margins: By 59–34, they approve of requiring workers to pay at least 15 percent towards their health care, as the law provides. By 58–34, they approve of requiring workers to pay at least 10 percent towards their pensions, as the law provides. Merit pay for government workers, as the law provides, is supported 57–35.

The bill’s least popular provision? A ban on strikes by state employees. The survey found 58 percent oppose the ban, 35 percent support it.

Tags: Barack Obama , John Kasich


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