Annapolis, MD—Despite spending more than $1M in blatantly false attacks ads against Ben Jealous, Larry Hogan and his Washington Republican allies have not been able to move his poll numbers. Today’s Gonzales poll shows that Hogan’s standing with Maryland voters is unchanged from the June Gonzales poll, where Hogan was leading Jealous 51 to 34. Today’s poll shows zero movement, with Hogan leading 52 to 36.
While comparisons of the two Gonzales polls shows little traction, it is likely that their poll is failing to take into account the record Democratic turnout coming in November. In a press briefing last week, the Maryland Democratic Party and Jealous campaign outlined their strategy for defeating Hogan, including projections for a record 2.1 million voter turnout in November. Today’s poll does not account for the Democratic enthusiasm that has swept elections nationwide and increased Democratic turnout in the primary by more than 25 percent, and shows that once people begin paying attention to the gubernatorial race in the coming weeks, Hogan will still struggle to pull together the 1 million-voter coalition he needs to win.
Internal polling conducted by the Jealous campaign shows that Marylanders are still unfamiliar with Jealous, but when they are asked to choose between Jealous’ bold vision for Maryland and Hogan’s piecemeal incrementalism, the race is a statistical tie. In fact, Hogan trailed by similar margins at this point in the 2014 race before his campaign had a chance to communicate with voters.
“The only thing this poll shows is that Larry Hogan and his Washington Republican allies’ strategy of littering the airwaves with more than $1 million in false and misleading attack ads is failing completely,” said Maryland Democratic Party chair Kathleen Matthews. “Data clearly shows that when Ben Jealous shares his bold agenda for Maryland, including improving schools and making healthcare more affordable, Hogan’s lead will disappear.”