Maryland treasurer asks Gov. Hogan to continue 'open opposition' to Donald Trump

Erin Cox
Contact ReporterThe Baltimore Sun
Democratic Treasurer Nancy Kopp hopes Republican Gov. Larry Hogan continues to oppose Donald Trump.

Maryland's Democratic treasurer called on Republican Gov. Larry Hogan on Wednesday to continue his "open opposition" to Donald Trump, whose surprise election last week sparked protests around the nation.

Treasurer Nancy Kopp said at the Board of Public Works meeting that she "appreciated" the way Hogan and Democratic Comptroller Peter Franchot did not support Trump, a Republican, during the election.

"I trust you will continue to speak out if and when the new regime reverts to the use of despicable language, threats and actions, and to also speak out now when this type of behavior appears in our communities," Kopp said.

Hogan was absent from the meeting. He was replaced by Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford, who said that "as far as the governor and I are concerned, we are focused, as we always have been, on Maryland."

Hogan had publicly disavowed Trump during the election. He skipped the Republican National Convention, then wrote in his father's name for president rather than voting for Trump.

The governor issued a statement after the election congratulating Trump and calling for unity. Hogan is attending the Republican Governors Association conference in Colorado this week.

Kopp also decried some of the anti-Semitic, racist and otherwise intolerant speech reported in Maryland over the past 10 days. On Monday, Maryland's attorney general linked the incidents to the atmosphere created by Trump's election.

"This is wrong," Kopp said. "It should have no place in Maryland. It should not be permitted in our communities."

The three-member Board of Public Works oversees billions in state spending each year and is made up of the governor, the treasurer and the comptroller. The three frequently use their meetings as an opportunity to comment on current events.

Franchot said "it's time to accept the outcome" of the election, but he added that Trump's recent political appointments give "room for pause."

The comptroller is the latest prominent Maryland Democrat to criticize specifically Trump's appointment of Steve Bannon to a senior White House job.

Opponents have sharply criticized Bannon, a Breitbart News executive, for courting the so-called "alt-right" and using racially charged headlines on the website. Among the examples cited by critics is a headline describing conservative commentator Bill Kristol as a "Republican spoiler, renegade Jew."

Establishment Republicans, including Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, have defended Bannon, saying he did not write those headlines and has not exhibited intolerant behavior. Priebus is Trump's incoming chief of staff.

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