The recent debt deal has caused Ohioans to sour on John Boehner. When PPP polled the state in May, 37% both approved and disapproved of Speaker Boehner’s performance in office. Now, only 34% approve, and his disapproval is up to 47%. The main cause? A movement of 23 points in the wrong direction with independents, from 37-34 to 34-54. He has also declined with the two major parties. Now, more Republicans disapprove (16%) than Democrats approve (12%), the opposite of three months ago, when only 8% of Republicans disapproved and 14% of Democrats approved.
Boehner’s native state does still see him more positively than they do Nancy Pelosi, however, with 49% viewing Boehner more favorably and 34% Pelosi. 14% see them equally well--almost all Democrats and independents. Though Republicans are not terribly high on Boehner in isolation, when matched with his vile foe, the former speaker, 90% of them prefer Boehner. Still only 62% of Democrats have a higher opinion of Pelosi, and independents split 52-25 Boehner's way, a huge switch from their overall feelings on him. Pelosi should probably steer clear of Ohio when her vulnerable members are running in Ohio House races next year.
Speaking of those House races, Ohio voters narrowly prefer Democrats for Congress, 42-37, but that is down from 43-34 in May, mainly because Republicans are hardening, moving from 73-9 in favor of the GOP pick to 80-5, now equaling Democrats' 81-6, the same as three months ago. Still 45% of independents remain undecided, down from 53% in May, and they have moved slightly towards the Democrats, from 30-17 in favor of the GOP to only 32-23 now.
As bad as the economy has been in the Rust Belt, more Ohioans still blame George W. Bush for the state of the economy than President Obama. 51% say Bush has been more responsible for the recession, and 42% say Obama. Independents side 49-44 with Bush, and Democrats are just slightly more likely to blame Bush than Republicans blame Obama.
We also asked a number of questions on the debt ceiling deal. 45% of Ohio voters think it will be bad for the economy, and only 27% predict it will be a good thing. As in the other states we asked the question, Democrats narrowly think averting default was a positive, 37-30, and most of the negative sentiment comes from Republicans (18-51) and independents (19-65).
Ohioans are almost unanimously sure the deal will do nothing for the deficit. 5% think it will solve it, but 82% do not. Again, Republicans (2-88) and independents (3-91) are most pessimistic.
As the deficit supercommittee gears up its negotiations, Boehner and crew should be wary of pushing a solution that is too heavy on cuts. 54% of Ohioans think the deficit should be dealt with through a combination of cuts and tax increases, while only 37% think cuts alone will suffice. Republicans favor cuts (68-25), obviously, but less so than Democrats prefer a balanced approach (13-77). Independents also side with Obama and the Democrats, 37-55.
Ohio is generally not in favor of same-sex marriage. Only a third think it should be legal, and 53% say it should remain illegal. That is just slightly up from May (31-53), as Democrats have moved from 45-40 in favor to 50-33, and independents from 28-51 against to only 37-47. But when given the option of civil unions, 61% of Ohio voters favor equal legal rights for gay couples, including 73% of Democrats, 67% of independents, and even 44% of Republicans.
When recently confronted by hostile Iowa voters, Mitt Romney proclaimed that “corporations are people, my friends.” PPP asked whether Ohioans agreed. 36% do, but half do not. Democrats unsurprisingly are least likely to agree with Romney (26-60), but even Republicans only narrowly do (42-41), less than independents do (45-42).
Full results here.