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Goucher poll: Marylanders give high marks to Hogan but back some key Jealous plans

Marylanders continue to give Republican Gov. Larry Hogan high marks for his management of the state, but they also support several key initiatives of his Democratic challenger Ben Jealous, according to a new Goucher College poll.

In a survey the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center conducted Tuesday to Sunday, more Marylanders than not say they think the state is headed in the right direction and they’re doing better financially than in the past.

Nearly two-thirds of Marylanders — 64 percent — approve of Hogan’s job performance, while just 17 percent disapprove.

But they also say they support a $15 minimum wage and legalizing marijuana — key aspects of Jealous’ platform.

Mileah Kromer, director of the Hughes Center, said the results show that while Marylanders generally like progressive policies, they also care about the state of the economy and don’t want to be charged high taxes.

“Although Maryland voters like progressive policies, they also think Maryland has been taxed too much,” Kromer said. “They have a positive impression that those things are headed in the right direction.”

However, many Marylanders like key aspects of Jealous’ platform: 71 percent of Marylanders support a $15 minimum wage, while 62 percent want to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

A majority of Maryland voters are in favor of both the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare (60 percent approval) and a Jealous-backed proposal to convert the state to a Medicare-for-all system (54 percent approval).

But when Marylanders are forced to choose between the two plans, they prefer improving Obamacare over Medicare-for-all — 47 percent to 29 percent.

“Jealous is not wrong when he says ‘Medicare-for-all’ is popular in Maryland, but it’s less popular than improving the Affordable Care Act,” Kromer said.

The poll of 831 Marylanders had a margin of error of 3.4 percentage points.

On Wednesday, Goucher will release additional results from the poll, including who voters prefer to vote for in a head-to-head matchup between Hogan and Jealous.

luke.broadwater@baltsun.com

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