Poll: With Five Weeks to Go, Dems Hold Slim Lead Over GOP in Ohio Congressional Races

A poll conducted for The Ohio Star indicates the GOP still has work to do in conveying its message about Ohio’s positive economic progress under President Trump and the Republican Congress.

The poll, released September 21 of likely Ohio voters by Triton Polling and Research, which shows Mike DeWine with a 4 point lead over Richard Cordray in the governor’s race and Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) with a 10 point lead over Rep. Jim Renacci (R-OH-16) in the U.S. Senate race, also shows 38.4 percent believe they’ve been impacted “for the better” by Trump’s tax cuts. Only 22.5 percent said the tax cuts impacted them “for the worse” while 7.1 percent weren’t sure how they’ve been affected.

Given those numbers, one would think Republicans would hold a clear advantage among those going to the polls to vote in the Nov. 6 congressional races. But they don’t.

If the election were held today, 48 percent said they’d vote Democrat compared to 46 percent Republican.

Ohio has several hotly contested congressional races that Democrats have targeted as winnable. These races are attracting heavy donations from out-of-state liberals.

They break down as follows:

  • District 1: Democrat Aftab Pureval vs. incumbent Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH-1).
  • District 10: Democrat Theresa Gasper vs. incumbent Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH-10)
  • District 12: Democrat Danny O’Connor vs. incumbent Rep. Troy Balderson (R-OH-12)
  • District 14: Democrat Betsy Rader vs. incumbent Rep. David Joyce (R-OH-14).

Trump carried Ohio by 8 percentage points in November 2016. But history shows that the party of a victorious president typically has a harder time motivating voters to get to the polls two years later in midterms. So, the fact that a late-September poll is showing Democrats with only a two-point lead could be a positive sign for Ohio Republicans. That leaves the GOP with five weeks to try to make up the difference.

Here are some other revelations in the poll:

  • On trade, President Trump’s policies again prove popular. A majority of respondents, 51 percent, said they agree with his policy of slapping higher tariffs on the goods of foreign countries if they don’t agree to fair trade deals. Only 38 percent oppose Trump’s threat of tariffs while 11 percent weren’t sure.
  • On the issue of Trump’s appointment of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, the numbers again favor the president. A solid 47 percent said they favor Kavanaugh’s confirmation and 40 percent opposed.
  • When asked if Trump’s endorsement of a candidate would make them more or less likely to vote for that candidate, 29 percent said they would be “more likely” and 46 percent said “less likely.”
  • Mike DeWine has a 4-point lead over Richard Cordray for governor and incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown with a 10-point lead over Republican Jim Renacci for U.S. Senate.

Overall, the poll reflects a strange dichotomy in which many Ohio voters don’t seem to be in love with Trump even though they like his policies.

The remaining statewide races showed Democrats with narrow leads but within the poll’s 3-percent margin of error. Those races include attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer and state auditor.

You can see the topline summary of the poll results here:

[pdf-embedder url=”https://theohiostar.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/180920-Triton-Ohio-Star-Statewide-Ohio-Survey-Topline-Results.pdf” title=”180920 Triton – Ohio Star Statewide Ohio Survey – Topline Results”]

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Anthony Accardi is a writer and reporter for The Ohio Star.






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