COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — A poll released Tuesday gives an early picture of where voters stand on the slate of candidates for the U.S. Senate election in Ohio and the presidential election, with 15 months and at least two elections preceding it. 

Suffolk University and USA Today conducted the poll between July 9 and 12, interviewing 500 voters in Ohio, according to a news release. The poll’s margin of error was plus or minus 4.4 percentage points. 

Presidential: Ohio could mimic its 2020 numbers

Former President Donald Trump led the pack when it came to the presidential election. Trump beat out President Joe Biden 44% to 38% — a 6% difference, within the poll’s margin of error and not far off from his 8% win in the state in 2020. 

Six percent of Ohioans polled were undecided between the two, with 9% opting for an independent candidate and 2% opting for Green Party candidate Cornel West, according to the poll.

If Florida Governor Ron DeSantis were the nominee over Trump, however, the lead over Biden in the state plunged to 39% for DeSantis versus 37% for Biden, which also falls within the margin of error. Ten percent of Ohioans polled were undecided in that circumstantial match, another 10% would vote for an independent candidate and 2% would vote for West. 

Of note, the only declared GOP candidate who calls Ohio home — Vivek Ramaswamy — did not command name recognition among the Ohioans surveyed. Just under two-thirds, or 62%, said they had never heard of him, according to the poll. 

U.S. Senate: No clear favorite for GOP nominee

More than half of registered Republicans, or 57% in this poll, said they were undecided about their preferred candidate in the primary — with no clear frontrunner months out from the May 2024 election. 

But against incumbent Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, Secretary of State Frank LaRose performed slightly better than the other two declared candidates, state Sen. Matt Dolan (R-Cleveland) and businessman Bernie Moreno. Dolan and Moreno have been in the race since January and April, while LaRose officially announced his campaign Monday after hinting at it for months. 

Brown and LaRose were locked in a 45% to 45% dead heat in this poll, while Brown inched ahead of Dolan 46% to 43% and led Moreno 48% to 41%. All fell within the poll’s margin of error.