Labor is poised for a big victory in Ohio next month- PPP's newest poll of the state finds that voters intend to reject Senate Bill 5 by a 56-36 margin. Although that margin is consistent with what we found in the state earlier this year, when we polled Ohio in August the support for repealing SB 5 had tightened to 50-39. These numbers suggest that momentum is back on the side of the groups trying to kill the bill.
The preferences of Republicans and independents on Senate Bill 5 are mostly unchanged from two months ago. Independents are evenly divided on the issue, 46/46. And Republicans want to uphold it 61/30. But Democrats have unified in their support for repealing SB 5. In August they were only planning to overturn it by a 69/21 margin. Now that figure is 80/13. That increase in Democratic support for repeal may be indicative of voters becoming increasingly aware what the implications of a 'yes' and 'no' vote are on this somewhat complicated referendum.
The rejection of Senate Bill 5 would be a huge defeat for John Kasich, and Kasich continues to be the most unpopular Governor PPP has polled on anywhere in the country in 2011. Just 37% of voters approve of the job he's doing to 54% who disapprove. He has an unusually high number of Republicans disenchanted with him- 23%- and he attracts little crossover support from Democrats to make up for that, with only 10% of them approving of him. Independents split against him by a 49/43 margin as well.
Given Kasich's unpopularity it's no surprise that Ohio voters continue to feel significant buyer's remorse about their choice for Governor last year. If they could do it over again 54% of voters say they would pick Ted Strickland to only 40% who would stick with Kasich.
The news for Republicans on this poll isn't all bad though. By a 55-24 margin voters say if the election was today that they would support Issue 3, which is basically meant to counteract Barack Obama's health care plan. Republicans unsurprisingly support it by a 70-12 margin and so do independents, 58-21. More striking is that Democrats say right now that they'd vote for it 41-35. That may be a reflection of the extremely innocuous sounding ballot language- I doubt Democrats would support Issue 3 if they really understood what it was but there's some serious voter education to be done in the final 3 weeks of the campaign if the folks trying to defeat the amendment are going to be successful.
Finally the proposed Congressional redistricting lines for Ohio are getting bad reviews from the voters in the state who have an opinion about them, and people would like a chance to go to the polls and have their say on the matter. 40% are opposed to the new maps while only 26% support them and 34% have no opinion on this decidedly insider baseball issue. Independents split against the maps by a 47/27 margin and while 56% of Democrats are against them, only 39% of Republicans stand up in favor of them.
36% of voters think there should be a referendum on the Congressional lines to 28% opposed, with 36% again expressing no opinion. Democrats and independents want the issue put to a vote of the people, Republicans are opposed.
Full results here