Maryland loves Larry Hogan more than Martin O'Malley - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Maryland loves Larry Hogan more than Martin O’Malley

By Len Lazarick

Two-thirds of all voters (67%) in a new poll taken last week approve of the job Gov. Larry Hogan is doing and only 19% disapprove, a higher approval rating than ever achieved by either of his two predecessors.

Three out of five voters (60%) believe Maryland is headed in the right direction, while 22% say the state is headed on the wrong track, with 18% giving no answer. (Full poll results here.)

Hogan approve disapprove chartVeteran pollster Patrick Gonzales called the rating “extremely impressive.” He compared it with Republican Gov. Bob Ehrlich’s “high-water mark” during his four-year term of 57% approval in August 2003, with 30% disapproving.

Gov. Martin O’Malley highest rating in his eight years in office was 58% in January 2011, shortly after his re-election in a rematch with Ehrlich, and 30% disapproved.

Hogan gets particularly high marks from Republicans (94%) and independents (78%). Almost half of Democrats (49%) approve of the job he is doing.

Hogan also does well with men, women and whites. Only among African Americans does he fall short, with 40% of blacks approving of the job he’s doing, and 38% disapproving.

Hogan job approval Gonzales graph

Slightly higher than previous polling

In previous polling, Hogan had 58% approval in an October Goucher College poll, a Washington Post-University of Maryland poll in October had him at 61%, and a November Baltimore Sun poll gave him 63% approval.

The latest poll numbers confirm the general impression at the State House that the new governor is very popular as he celebrates his first year in office and a successful battle with cancer. This could give him leverage with the legislature.

However, the high numbers also show Democrats that they need to do a more effective job driving his approval rating down, since their persistent attacks of his withholding $68 million in education funding have not worked.

The poll was taken Jan. 11-16, contacting 819 registered voters by both landline and cell phone. The margin of error is 3.5%, meaning that there is a 95% probability that the figures would fall within this range if all voters were surveyed.

About the author

Maryland Reporter is a daily news website produced by journalists committed to making state government as open, transparent, accountable and responsive as possible – in deed, not just in promise. We believe the people who pay for this government are entitled to have their money spent in an efficient and effective way, and that they are entitled to keep as much of their hard-earned dollars as they possibly can. Contact the author.

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