So Kasich’s astroturfing blogger, Third Base Politics, is trumpeting the latest Rasmussen poll showing Kasich ahead by nine points.  The idiot actually thinks its noteworthy that 70 some Kasich supporters tweeted about it.  (That’s remarkable, how?)

Yes, Rasmussen, the favorite pollster of the GOP (since everyone realized that John Zogby was simply unreliable) says Kasich is up nine points, but there are fault lines that show Kasich’s support is incredibly soft:

1) Strickland’s favorability ratings are just fine and exceed Kasich.  So, it means that Ohioans like Strickland personally.

2) Kasich has no name recognition.  He’s benefiting more as an anti-Strickland vote than a pro-Kasich vote.  This, of course, is by the Kasich’s campaign design because they realize that the earlier folks learn about Kasich’s platform the quicker he’ll lose that soft support.

3) Democrats aren’t engaged in the race yet.  Strickland gets lukewarm support from Democratic primary voters.  With an actual Senate primary (in which Strickland is backing one of the candidates) pending, it’s not surprised that Democrats aren’t yet engaged in supporting Strickland, who has no primary challenger and isn’t on the ballot for eleven months.

4) African-American voters aren’t engaged.  Same as above.  Furthermore, Rasmussen has been notorious for underreporting Strickland’s support in the African-American communities.  I recall during 2005-2006 that conservative bloggers cited similar numbers as evidence of how Ken Blackwell was going to mop the floor with Strickland.  It didn’t happen.  Exit polls and data from African-American majority precincts showed no evidence of Strickland underperforming.

5) Strickland still has decent approval ratings.  Nearly 50% of Ohioans still approve of the job Strickland is doing.  26% only “somewhat disapprove.  That last class of voters may being leaning Kasich today, but are still for the taking by Strickland.  Strickland’s job approval rating actually exceeds the President’s.

Here’s the funniest thing TBP said:

Despite the constant negativity and attacks coming from the Ohio Dems, Kasich only became stronger among Republicans and Independents.

What constant attacks?  I’ve seen very little from the Ohio Democratic Party attacking Kasich.  Sure, they’ve issued press releases attacking Kasich, but not a single one of them seems to have been picked up by any media outlet.  It’s hard for the ODP’s attacks to affect the polling if the only people who hear them are visitors to the ODP’s website.  Therefore, Kasick’s resiliency is hardly remarkable as it is expected.  

Regardless, the wrong attack is being used.  The guilty by association reference to Lehman Brothers just isn’t going to move Democrats and independents back into the Strickland campaign.  However, mentioning Kasich rubbing elbows with Glenn Beck (“Obama is a racist”) at Fox News will.

Mentioning that the only positions Kasich has publicly announced calls for the end of public education and the most radical tax giveaway to the richest Ohioans will.

Time and time again, when Kasich has been asked what his plan is to solve Ohio’s problems, he’s said:

“These specifics will be answered when I’m ready to answer them, not when the questions are asked.”

Columbus Dispatch, 3/29/09

When that hits a paid TV ad, Kasich’s numbers will collapse.  Because leadership means being able to answer the call when asked.