From the Dayton Daily News…
Poll: Sen. Brown could face tough 2012 challenge
By William Hershey
Thursday, December 16, 2010, 08:27 AM
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, a 12-point winner over Republican Mike DeWine in 2006, could face a tough re-election challenge in 2012, according to a Public Policy Polling survey released on Wednesday.
Although DeWine, just elected Ohio attorney general in November, isn’t expected to run for the Senate again, he and Brown are tied in a potential rematch, according to the poll.
Also, Brown has fairly narrow leads over three relatively unknown potential GOP candidates, Lt. Gov.-elect Mary Taylor, Secretary of State-elect Jon Husted and U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Urbana.
“Sherrod Brown won by a wide margin in 2006 because it was a strongly Democratic year,” Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling, said in a press release.
“But he hasn’t proven to have much appeal to Republicans and independents and that could make his quest for re-election a tough one.”
In the poll, Brown and DeWine are tied at 43 percent. The other matchups:
Brown leads Taylor, 40-38 percent.
Brown leads Husted, 43-38 percent.
Brown leads Jordan, 43-35 percent.
In the survey, 40 percent approve of Brown’s performance, while 37 percent disapprove. However, among independents, 48 percent disapprove and 28 percent approve.
A PPP analysis released with the poll says that Brown’s 2012 fate will be closely intertwined with Democratic President Barack Obama’s re-election chances. If Obama carries Ohio, Brown also is likely to be a winner, the analysis says.
Also, Brown’s potential vulnerability depends on whether the GOP nominates a “serviceable opponent.” The Republicans “blew their chances against some easier marks than Brown in 2010 by nominating candidates far outside the mainstream,” the analysis says.
PPP surveyed 510 voters statewide from Dec. 10 through Sunday, Dec., 12. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.3 percent.