With less than a month to go until Election Day, Republican Gov. Larry Hogan continues to hold a commanding lead as he seeks a second term in charge of Maryland’s state government.
In a survey conducted by Gonzales Research & Marketing Strategies from Oct. 1 to Saturday, Hogan was ahead of his Democratic rival, Ben Jealous, by 18 percentage points with 54 percent of voters surveyed backing Hogan and 36 percent supporting Jealous.
“Free State voters are on the doorstep of reelecting a GOP governor for the first time since many liked Ike, and we all loved Lucy,” pollster Patrick Gonzales wrote, noting that the last two-term Republican governor of Maryland held office in the 1950s. “If the election were held today, incumbent Larry Hogan would win in a romp, trouncing his Democratic opponent by a solid double-digit margin.”
About 64 percent of those surveyed said they think Maryland is moving in the right direction, while 20 percent said the state is off track.
The poll found that Hogan leads among Republicans (91 percent to 6 percent), unaffiliated voters (52 percent to 25 percent), men (58 percent to 33 percent), women (49 percent to 38 percent) and white voters (65 percent to 26 percent).
Jealous leads among Democrats (55 percent to 35 percent) and black voters (70 percent to 21 percent).
Geographically, Hogan leads in 20 of the state’s 24 jurisdictions — with his support strongest in the rural parts of the state. Hogan led the swing jurisdictions of Baltimore County and Howard County by 37 points and 21 points, respectively.
Jealous leads in Prince George’s County (64 percent to 23 percent), Baltimore City (50 percent to 40 percent) and Charles County (44 percent to 39 percent).
The two men were tied in traditionally liberal Montgomery County.
The poll of 806 voters has a margin of error of 3.5 percent. The Gonzales poll was released a day after a survey by The Washington Post and University of Maryland found Hogan leading by 20 percentage points.
Gonzales’ poll also found what he called “unusual winds ... blowing against” incumbent Attorney General Brian Frosh.
Frosh, a Democrat, leads his Republican challenger Craig Wolf by 9 percentage points.
Frosh was favored by 43 percent of Maryland voters, with 34 percent backing Wolf and 23 percent undecided.
“Frosh’s margin today is significantly less than it was a couple of months ago and down 20 points from a public poll released in September,” Gonzales noted. “But this is still blue Maryland, and it is hard to imagine Democrat Frosh being defeated, an upset that would shake the walls of quaint Annapolis to their very foundation.”
The survey also found a “slight uptick” in support among Marylanders for President Donald Trump: Forty-one percent of Maryland voters approve of the job Trump is doing as president while 55 percent disapprove.
Additionally, the poll found that 64 percent of Marylanders support the Trump administration’s recently renegotiated trade deal between the United States, Mexico and Canada, while just 13 percent are in opposition.