While Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald solidifies his frontrunner status for the Democratic nomination, he trails Gov. John Kasich in a potential general election matchup, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday.
Kasich owns a 46-percent-to-37-percent edge over FitzGerald, according to the poll, though FitzGerald is not well-known in the state. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray -- who as a former state attorney general is better known than FitzGerald -- trails Kasich, 45 percent to 38 percent, the poll shows. Cordray has been renominated and is awaiting confirmation to his post, but some operatives say he might consider a gubernatorial bid if Senate Republicans make good on their vow to block him.
The results of both matchups are similar to those in the previous Quinnipiac poll, conducted in late February.
Much of Kasich's lead in the poll comes from his margins among men -- he leads FitzGerald, 51 percent to 32 percent, and Cordray, 52 percent to 34 percent. His approval rating stands at 52 percent, the poll also shows.
Ohio Democrats say they hope to avoid a primary, and FitzGerald has all but made his candidacy official. He's been actively politicking at local party affairs and introducing himself to Democrats throughout the state. While he'd start with less name recognition than Cordray, Democrats say they are enthused about his potential and clear desire to join the race.
The Quinnipiac poll was conducted April 10-15, surveying 1,138 registered voters. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 2.9 percentage points.