Ohio Gov. John Kasich got some good news Friday. Gallup released a poll today showing the crusty, term-limited leader isn’t the least liked Republican candidate anymore. That honor goes to Jeb! Bush, who sits atop—or at the bottom, depending on your point of view—the long list of Republicans who by varying degrees have ruffled feathers on a variety of subjects.
Gallup reported that former two-term Florida Governor Jeb! Bush’s image among Republicans has steadily worsened over the past 5 ½ months, earning him a current net favorable rating of -1 (44% favorable, 45% unfavorable). Just six months ago, in mid-July his numbers were quite different at +27 (54% favorable, 27% unfavorable).
“On a relative basis, Bush’s current -1 net favorable rating among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents is the worst of any major GOP candidate—lower than John Kasich’s +5, and well below seven other GOP candidates Gallup is tracking,” Gallup pollsters reported.
Meanwhile, Mr. Kasich isn’t making new friends fast, especially in Iowa, the first caucus state that votes on February 1. “For reasons that are presumably known only to himself, John Kasich is still running for President,” read an article at RedState.com, a self-described conservative blog and conservative news source. “It’s something of a mystery as to why he even jumped in the race. His poll numbers have never been good, and he’s frankly uninspiring as a speaker. What’s more, he just doesn’t seem to like talking to potential voters. It’s something of a running theme in his appearances, and Iowans are now finding this out as the state’s caucus nears.”
Public Policy Polling published its latest New Hampshire poll, and to no one’s surprise, PPP finds Donald Trump leading all GOP contenders there by 14 points. “Trump’s position in the state has been steady over the last three months, PPP notes. “We found him [Trump] at 28% in mid-October, 27% in early December, and we find him at 29% this month. 5 other candidates are in double digits but pretty closely clustered and all well behind Trump- Marco Rubio at 15%, Chris Christie and John Kasich at 11%, and Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz at 10%. Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina at 4%, Rand Paul at 3%, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum at 1%, and Jim Gilmore with less than 1% round out the field.”
RedState.com has fun with Gov. Kasich candid and blunt style, which his PR handlers are forced to recast as “straight talk,” but everyone knows is just his grating, self-basting, I’m-right-and-you’re-wrong attitude that shines through to his embarrassment. “One of the necessities of politicking and running for office is that you either like the people who will vote for you or can fake it effectively. John Kasich apparently fails at doing both, and it looks like Iowans understand it as well as people across the country do. If this is how he treats ordinary Americans, then it’s just another signal, if his lackluster–to be charitable–poll numbers weren’t enough of one, that he needs to drop out of the race,” the article notes.
In another attempt to profile Ohio’s 69th Governor, the view that emerges is one of daunting smugness. “If you talk to Ohioans—and Ohio is my home state, so I do—you’ll find that most people don’t really like Kasich, not even Republicans. They might like his stance on spending, or taxes, or abortion, but Kasich himself? “Arrogant.Condescending. Manipulative.”