Vice President Biden would be as strong as Hillary Clinton, or even stronger, in hypothetical races against Republicans Donald Trump and Jeb Bush in the battleground states of Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, according to a Quinnipiac University opinion survey released Thursday.

The hints of a political opening for the vice president come as he considers whether to run for the Democratic presidential nomination amid stumbles by Clinton, the long-time frontrunner. Biden, who is consulting with advisers and family members, is expected to announce a decision next month.

Clinton, the former first lady and secretary of state, remains the top choice – by a wide margin – of Democrats who are asked their preferences for the party's nomination. But her share of the primary vote was below 50 percent for the first time this year in the latest Quinnipiac Poll of the three swing states.

"Hillary Clinton's poll numbers are likely a leaky faucet: drip, drip, drip," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

Clinton's unfavorable ratings were between 54 percent and 55 percent in all three states, compared to between 42 percent and 43 percent for Biden.

Clinton would narrowly win in two out of the three states against Trump, the GOP frontrunner, with leads in Ohio and Pennsylvania of 5 percentage points each (43-38) and (45-40). She would trail the real-estate magnate by 2 percentage points in Florida (41-43).

Biden would lead Trump 10 points in Ohio (48-38); eight points in Pennsylvania (48-40); and three percentage points in Florida (45-42).

Against Bush, the Republican with the biggest campaign war chest, Clinton would trail by 11 percentage points in Florida (38-49) and 3 in Pennsylvania (40-43 percent); she leads Bush by 2 percentage points in Ohio (41-39).

Biden trails Bush by 13 percentage points in Florida (38-51) and 1 in Pennsylvania (42-43); Biden leads Bush by 3 in Ohio (42-39).

Americans are looking for a President who tells it like it is, and one who has a history of backing up those words with action," said Joshua Alcorn, Senior Advisor to Draft Biden. "This is why Americans are strongly considering Joe Biden, a guy who has spent the last 40 years listening to them and working hard to address their concerns."