In 2012, Ohio is a key state in the November election. In the last 6 Presidential elections, Ohio has gone with the winner each time. This year, it’s difficult to come up with a realistic scenario where Romney loses the state, and yet is victorious over Obama. Here, we’ll look at the issues that are likely to be important to voters there, concentrating on the economy, and we’ll present the latest polls for the Buckeye State.
Currently, the state has a Republican Governor, John Kasich. One Senator is a Republican, Rob Portman; the other, Democrat Sherrod Brown, is up for re-election in 2012. Of the 18 members of the House of Representatives, 13 are Republican, while 5 are Democrats.
As written earlier, a key issue in Ohio, as in most other states, is the economy and related issues. Because of the importance of manufacturing in the state, workers are likely to be opposed to globalization, but it’s unclear which of the two Presidential candidates could actually take a position opposing this trend in a believable manner. Obama is likely to make Romney’s tenure on Wall Street a factor, and emphasize the auto bailout in the western part of the state. Romney can be expected to capitalize on the high unemployment rate in the state and nation, and emphasize his business managerial background.
Healthcare, especially ObamaCare, will also be an important issue for some of the voters. If Romney is able to convince seniors that this plan threatens their Medicare, he may improve his chances measurably, since so many voters in the state, as in much of the Rust Belt, are elderly. As well, Ohio is over 80% white, which should improve Romney’s chances. On the other hand, it is a highly unionized state, which guarantees a lot of Democratic volunteers.
In recent elections, Ohio has been a bellwether state, with the winner here being elected President.
|Recent Ohio Presidential General Election Match-ups|
This year’s polls show an extremely competitive election in Ohio thus far. Generally, most polls have Obama with a slight lead, with a 2.6% lead, according to the latest RCP data.
|Presidential Polls, Ohio, General Election Match-ups|
|Polling Date||Polling Company||Mitt Romney (R)||Barack Obama (D)|
|6/19 – 6/25||Quinnipiac||38%||47%|
|6/21 – 6/24||PPP||44%||47%|
|5/31 – 6/5||Purple Strategies||48%||45%|
|5/17 – 5/20||NBC News/Marist||42%||48%|
Thus far, neither side has been able to develop traction. There will be a lot of money spent in Ohio since there are only a dozen or so states in which the winner isn’t already assumed. Both sides will have all of the funds that they need, so Ohioans will be engulfed with ads from Labor Day until Halloween. We’ll keep you updated here regularly, so stay tuned.