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Battleground Ohio: Biden, Trump Locked In Tight Race, Quinnipiac University Ohio Poll Finds; Gov. DeWine Approval Surges To Record High

In a state that has picked the eventual presidential winner since 1964, former Vice President Joe Biden receives 46 percent of the vote, while President Donald Trump receives 45 percent in a general election matchup, according to a Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh- pea-ack) University poll of Ohio registered voters released today. Among Republicans, Trump wins 92 - 5 percent, while Democrats go for Biden 93 - 3 percent. Independents are divided with Trump receiving 44 percent and Biden getting 40 percent.

There are wide gender, race, and education gaps. Women go to Biden by 16 points, 53 - 37 percent, while men go to Trump also by 16 points, 54 - 38 percent. Biden leads among Black voters 81 - 8 percent, while Trump leads among white voters 50 - 42 percent. Biden leads among white voters with a college degree by 21 points, 57 - 36 percent, while Trump also leads by the same 21-point margin among white voters without a college degree, 56 - 35 percent.

Biden gets a mixed favorability rating as 42 percent of voters have a favorable opinion of him, while 45 percent have an unfavorable one. Trump's favorability rating is underwater, as 43 percent have a favorable opinion of him and 53 percent have an unfavorable one.

"You have to go back 60 years to find an election where Ohio was NOT a lynchpin or a pathway to the presidency. That is why this very close horse race is so deeply consequential. The mantra in the backrooms of GOP and Democratic campaign headquarters has to be... 'Don't lose Ohio!'" said Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Tim Malloy.


When asked who would do a better job handling various issues, Trump does best on the economy, while Biden does best on race relations:

  • On the economy, Trump leads 53 - 43 percent;
  • On handling a crisis, Biden has a slight lead 50 - 46 percent;
  • On the coronavirus response, Biden has a slight lead 50 - 45 percent;
  • On health care, Biden leads 51 - 43 percent;
  • On race relations, Biden leads 54 - 38 percent.


President Trump receives a negative job approval rating, as 44 percent approve of the job he is doing, while 53 percent disapprove. It's essentially unchanged from July of 2019 when 43 percent approved while 52 percent disapproved. While 47 percent of voters approve of the job Senator Sherrod Brown is doing, 34 percent disapprove. Senator Rob Portman gets a split job approval rating, as 37 percent of voters approve of the job he is doing, while 38 percent disapprove.


An overwhelming majority of voters, 75 - 19 percent, approve of the job Ohio Governor Mike DeWine is doing. That marks a spike of 31 percentage points since July of 2019, when DeWine had a 44 - 33 percent job approval rating. It's also an all-time high for any Ohio governor in all of Quinnipiac University's polls of registered voters since 2007. DeWine receives a very high approval rating among all partisan groups. His approval among his fellow Republicans is 76 percent, among independents it's 74 percent, and among Democrats it's 81 percent.

"A Republican governor is far more popular than the Republican president in a state the country will have laser focus on when the polls start shutting down on election night, November the 3rd," Malloy added.

Governor DeWine also receives high marks for his handling of the response to the coronavirus; voters approve 77 - 20 percent. Voters give President Trump much lower marks for his handling of the response to the coronavirus. While 43 percent approve of President Trump's response to the coronavirus, 54 percent disapprove.


A majority of voters, 60 percent, say Governor DeWine's lifting of restrictions because of the coronavirus outbreak is "about right," while 19 percent say it is "too fast" and 19 percent say it is "not quickly enough."

Slightly more than 4 in 10 (42 percent) voters in Ohio say they personally know someone who's been diagnosed with the coronavirus.

Seventy percent of voters think it's "very" or "somewhat" likely that there will be another wave of coronavirus infections that will cause businesses in the state to close again. Voters say 52 - 39 percent that they think it will be safe to send students to college in the fall. Forty-nine percent think it will be safe to send students to elementary, middle, and high schools in the fall, while 42 percent think it will be unsafe. Among public school parents, 53 percent think it will be safe, while 41 percent think it will be unsafe.


Fifty-two percent of voters support banning Confederate flags from public places in Ohio, while 44 percent oppose. However, when asked about removing Confederate statues from public places around the country, voters oppose 51 - 44 percent. They also oppose 54 - 42 percent renaming military bases that were named after Confederate generals.


More than 8 in 10 (82 percent) voters approve of the way police in their community are doing their job, while 16 percent disapprove. Seventy-two percent of voters approve of the way police in Ohio are doing their job, while 24 percent disapprove. When asked whether police officers are generally held accountable for misconduct, voters are divided, with 46 percent saying "yes" and 50 percent saying "no."

Asked whether being a victim of police violence is something they personally worry about, 82 percent of voters say "no," while 18 percent say "yes." There are stark differences when broken down by race. Sixty percent of Black voters say they personally worry about being the victim of police violence compared to only 9 percent of white voters.

A majority (57 percent) oppose cutting some funding for police departments in their community and shifting it to social services, while 39 percent support it. Voters say 82 - 15 percent that they oppose eliminating their community's current police department and replacing it with a new one.

1,139 self-identified registered voters in Ohio were surveyed from June 18 - 22 with a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts gold standard surveys using random digit dialing with live interviewers calling landlines and cell phones. The Quinnipiac University Poll conducts nationwide surveys and polls in more than a dozen states on national and statewide elections, as well as public policy issues.

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