GOP Polls: Hogan Has Huge Lead Over Jealous in Miller and Busch’s Districts

Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R) is wildly popular in the legislative districts of the General Assembly’s presiding officers, according to Republican-funded polls released Thursday. The polls, commissioned by the Maryland Republican Party, were made public to coincide with the lawmakers’ public endorsement Thursday of Benjamin T. Jealous, the Democratic nominee for governor. In District 27, where Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D) is seeking a 12th term, Hogan led Jealous 57 percent to 28 percent in the GOP poll. The survey of 300 likely voters was taken Aug. 2-5 by Targeted Creative Communications. It had a 5.5-point margin of error.  Jesse Peed, Republican challenger to Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr.  The 27th District, which takes in parts of Calvert, Charles and Prince George’s counties, was one of nine districts with Democratic senators that Hogan carried in 2014. That year, he took 52 percent in the district compared to 46 percent for then-Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown (D). Similarly, in the Annapolis-based District 30A, where House Speaker Michael E. Busch (D) is seeking a ninth term, Hogan led Jealous 71 percent to 21 percent. He carried that district over Brown 58 percent to 40 percent in 2014. This survey of 300 likely voters was conducted July 25 and 26 by Red Maverick Media/Communication Concepts and also carried a 5.5-point error margin.   “The Maryland Republican Party believes that Governor Hogan’s strength in Miller and Busch’s districts provide substantial opportunities and both the Senate President and Speaker should be concerned about their re-election bids,” the party said in a statement. According to the GOP news release, Miller polled below 50 percent in a head-to-head contest with his Republican challenger, businessman Jesse Peed, and “also showed considerable weakness in his name identification test.” The GOP also suggested that Hogan’s popularity in the district could imperil Del. Michael A. Jackson (D), a former Prince George’s County sheriff who is seeking a second term in Annapolis. In Busch’s Anne Arundel County district, “Hogan’s substantial improvement in the district will likely drive coattails that will put Speaker Busch and [Democratic Senate nominee] Sarah Elfreth at-risk,” the Republican release said. The Senate district is a top Republican target this fall, as the GOP aims to pick up five seats to prevent the Democrats from having a veto-proof majority in the upper chamber next term, assuming Hogan is reelected. Elfreth, a Democratic and community activist who is closely aligned with Busch, is squaring off against former Del. Ronald A. George (R). Asked by Maryland Matters, Patrick O’Keefe, executive director of the Maryland Republican Party, refused to release any of the down-ballot results from the GOP polls. [email protected]

Josh Kurtz
Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.

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