THE REAL STATE OF HOGAN’S STATE: Scandals, COVID Mismanagement, Funding For Schools & Safety Slashed
As Larry Hogan prepares to give his State of the State address, here are the facts about his real record: his time as governor has been marred by his continual mismanagement of the COVID pandemic, efforts to slash funding for schools and public safety – and a series of ongoing scandals.
From Maryland Democratic Party Chair Yvette Lewis: “Here are the facts Marylanders won’t hear at his State of the State: Hogan has badly mismanaged the response to the COVID pandemic, proposed slashing funding for schools and public safety, and is facing a series of escalating scandals. At every turn, Hogan has used his position to try and benefit himself and push the agenda of his Republican Party. Marylanders deserve better.”
See Hogan’s record for yourself:
Hogan Mismanaged the COVID-19 Pandemic
Under Hogan Maryland was the “slowest in the nation” to distribute vaccines, he suffered a major scandal for touting “flawed, never used,” COVID tests from South Korea – and now his Health Department is facing new scrutiny for delays in notifying patients about spoiled vaccines.
- Baltimore Sun: State Senate’s only physician questions Maryland health secretary over delay alerting patients of possibly spoiled vaccines. “The state Senate’s sole physician pressed the head of the state health department Wednesday over a months long delay in notifying patients who may have received spoiled vaccines — and said he is worried issues are prevalent among other vaccine providers.”
- Baltimore Sun Editorial Board: Gov. Hogan’s vetoes: all about political self-interest. “There’s something awfully peculiar when a governor vetoes legislation that passed the General Assembly with just a handful of dissenting votes, as did the bill to provide more transparency in emergency procurements […] His opposition to procurement transparency or even legislation mandating local and state planning for the next pandemic may well stem more from how such reforms might validate criticism of his own stewardship of the crisis than his alleged concerns about cost or red tape.”
- The Washington Post: Hogan’s first batch of coronavirus tests from South Korea were flawed, never used. “Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) spent $9.46 million in state funding to import 500,000 coronavirus tests from South Korea that turned out to be flawed and weren’t used, emails, documents and interviews show…Hogan heralded the initial purchase as ‘an exponential, game-changing step forward’ and featured it as the climax of his political memoir.”
- Baltimore Sun Editorial Board: Korean COVID-19 test kits: Why can’t Maryland’s governor admit mistakes? “For months and months, officials either stonewalled or offered conflicting information about what happened.”
- WJLA: Md. is slowest state at distributing vaccine. “There’s concern about the speed of COVID-19 vaccine distribution nationwide right now, but especially in some states. According to a new Bloomberg analysis, Maryland is the slowest in the nation.”
Hogan Proposed Slashing Funding For Schools & Education Programs
Hogan’s past budgets have proposed cutting funding for Maryland schools and education programs.
- WAMU: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Faces Pushback To Proposed $1.45B Budget Cuts. “Advocates with the Maryland State Education Association, the state’s teachers union, called the proposed cut in public school funding “unconscionable and endangering the health of educators and students.”
- The Diamondback: Hogan’s proposed education budget cuts would harm minorities and educators. “The largest chunk of the budget cuts is a proposed $201 million cut in statewide K-12 school funding aid. All districts, regardless of wealth and diversity, would feel the strain of this decreased funding…Hogan’s 2023 budget proposed cutting $139 million in Blueprint for Education funding – despite a $4 billion surplus.”
Hogan Has Made Maryland Less Safe.
Hogan has cut funding for violence protection programs, he vetoed gun safety bills and under his leadership the state Department of Public Safety released from supervision dangerous individuals.
- Baltimore Sun: “Governor Would Not Spend $80 Million…For Violence Prevention.” “Around 50 community members, city officials and Safe Streets employees gathered in Sandtown-Winchester Thursday afternoon to voice concerns about a proposed budget cut to a city violence prevention program. The rally formed the day after Gov. Larry Hogan’s budget chief said the governor would not spend $80 million authorized by the General Assembly for violence prevention, school renovation and other programs.”
- Baltimore Sun: “37% of victims and suspects in city murders and non-fatal shootings were under DPP supervision at the time.” “The Maryland General Assembly’s Department of Legislative Services took a close look at the state agency’s Division of Parole and Probation and found a variety of shortcomings. In a two-month period in early 2020, investigators found that 37% of victims and suspects in city murders and non-fatal shootings were under DPP supervision at the time.”
- NBC Washington: Maryland Senate Overrides Veto of Long Gun Background Checks. “The Maryland Senate voted Tuesday to override Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of a measure requiring background checks on rifle and shotgun sales in the state.
Hogan Is Embroiled In A Series of Scandals
Hogan is facing multiple scandals: he’s hid his political communications while in office, his former chief of staff is on trial for wire fraud and theft charges – stemming from a payout he claims Hogan approved – and he’s advanced state transportation projects that benefit his own properties.
- Washington Post: Opinion: Larry Hogan skirts disclosure requirements one self-destructing message at a time. “In at least one instance uncovered by The Post, Mr. Hogan took to Wickr in an effort at political damage control arising from his own misstep early in the pandemic, when 500,000 coronavirus tests he arranged to purchase from South Korea turned out to be useless, a fact the governor tried to hush up.”
- Baltimore Sun: New Hogan chief of staff got six-figure payout as he left Maryland Environmental Service to work for governor. “When Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan’s new chief of staff left his job running an independent state agency to work at the State House, he walked away with a six-figure severance package that included a year’s salary. The Maryland Environmental Service’s board of directors approved the payout for Roy McGrath’s voluntary departure in a private online meeting May 28, according to the meeting minutes posted on its website. The salary amount is not in the minutes, and the minutes don’t offer a reason for the payment.”
- Washington Post: Hogan expressed support of hefty severance package, says former chief of staff Roy McGrath. “Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) had sent a private message to Roy McGrath, his longtime ally and former chief of staff, indicating his support of a large payout that McGrath received from the quasi-public agency he led before becoming the governor’s top aide, according to a document McGrath provided to The Washington Post […] McGrath provided The Post a screenshot of the message Hogan sent him and a copy of a memo dated May 18, 2020 — two weeks before McGrath was to start as Hogan’s top aide — that broadly spells out what McGrath says was a confidential agreement between himself and Hogan.”
- Baltimore Sun: Maryland Gov. Hogan raises concern that ex-chief of staff will release recordings. “Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is attempting to block the release of conversations that were recorded secretly by his one-time chief of staff, who is awaiting criminal trials on wiretapping and other charges in both state and federal court…McGrath provided the same documents to The Baltimore Sun, which he claimed proved the governor knew about and supported his efforts to get a generous severance payout from the Maryland Environmental Service when he left a position there to become chief of staff.”
- Washington Monthly: Who Does Maryland’s Governor Really Work For? “Hogan has advanced a number of major state transportation projects that are near properties his company owns, a development that can boost the value of those properties… Multiple legislators said they were not informed of the governor’s nearby real-estate interests before voting on his transportation budget.”