Headline: "Blackwell poll shows he is pick of GOP"
December 15, 2004
Cleveland Plain Dealer
After high-profile crusades for tax cuts and against gay marriage, Secretary of State Ken Blackwell now leads the two other Republicans who want to be Ohio's next governor, according to a poll of GOP voters commissioned by Blackwell's campaign.
Of the 511 people surveyed, 36 percent supported Blackwell for the nomination, 21 percent favored Auditor Betty Montgomery and Attorney General Jim Petro trailed with 18 percent.
Blackwell released the poll one year after a Montgomery survey showed 32 percent of GOP voters favored her candidacy. Blackwell placed second with 23 percent; Petro finished last with 17 percent.
Since then, Blackwell has courted his party's conservative wing by leading efforts to add a gay-marriage ban to the Ohio Constitution and arguing for lower taxes.
His message resonated well, especially among voters in his home of Cincinnati and those in the upper-income brackets, according to the survey.
Pollster Fred Steeper said voters' growing concern over moral values puts Blackwell in a position to continue to gain support.
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Secretary of State Blackwell Addresses Group