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Published: Friday, 2/21/2014

Ohio poll picks Hillary Clinton over GOP

No leading Republican presidential contenders approach ex-secretary of state


Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton holds a commanding lead among Ohio voters against any of the leading potential Republican nominees, including Ohio Gov. John Kasich, in an early look at the 2016 presidential race in Ohio, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday.

Mrs. Clinton tops New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie by 49 percent to 36 percent in the poll. In a Nov. 27 survey, before Mr. Christie’s bridge scandal, Mrs. Clinton led by 42 percent to 41 percent.

She also would defeat Mr. Kasich, according to the independent poll by the Connecticut university polling center, by 51 percent to 39 percent.

The poll showed Ohio voters saying, by 55 percent to 39 percent, that Mrs. Clinton would make a good president.

No Republican listed gets a positive score on the question. Governor Kasich got a negative score — 34 percent to 47 percent.

“The George Washington Bridge is not in Ohio, but voters there seem very aware of its traffic problems — and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s traffic problems,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

Mr. Christie’s political stock has plummeted since revelations that his staff created a bridge-access traffic jam in a New Jersey city to inflict political punishment on the mayor.

Mrs. Clinton easily outpolls the entire GOP field, according to Quinnipiac, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

“Of Republicans tested, Wisconsin’s Paul Ryan runs best in Ohio against the former Secretary of State and Gov. John Kasich runs relatively well. But Mrs. Clinton remains far and away the leader at this point in Ohio,” Mr. Brown said.

Mr. Ryan, who graduated from Miami University of Ohio, would get 40 points to Mrs. Clinton’s 49 points.

Ohio voters give President Obama a negative 40 percent to 55 percent job approval rating, up from a negative 34 percent to 61 percent in November.

Voters approve 48 percent to 34 percent of the job Democratic U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown is doing and give Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman a 38 percent to 32 percent approval rating.

Quinnipiac surveyed 1,370 registered voters Feb. 12-17.

The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.7 percentage points.

Contact Tom Troy: tomtroy@theblade.com or 419--724-6058 or an Twitter @TomFTroy.

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