Public Policy Polling said Kasich tied for fifth place when Ohioans were asked about nine potential Republican nominees. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie were the most popular, with 17 percent each, followed by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 10 percent, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., with nine, Kasich and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., tied at 8 percent, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, at 6 percent, and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., trailing with 4 percent each.
Asked who they would choose if Kasich was the Republican nominee and Hillary Clinton the Democrat, more than half, 53 percent, chose the former secretary of state and only 35 percent their governor. Clinton led all the Republicans mentioned in the poll, although Christie was a little ahead of the pack with 45 percent for Clinton and 36 percent Christie.
Republicans' conservative stance on social issues appears to be hurting them in Ohio. Forty percent of those polled said they do not like the restrictive abortion law Kasich signed recently while 34 percent approve.
Nearly seven of 10, including a majority of Republicans, say homosexual couples should at least get recognition through civil unions while 48 percent favor gay marriage and 42 percent oppose it, the first time gay marriage has shown plurality support.
The poll was conducted Aug. 16-19 with a sample of 551 Ohio voters. The margin of error is 4.2 percent.