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Larry Hogan, Anthony Brown
Republican Larry Hogan and Democratic Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown (AP Photo)

Poll suggests tight race between Brown and Hogan

A new poll by an independent political action committee suggests that the race for governor in Maryland maybe be tightening as the campaign enters its final month.

A poll conducted by Annapolis-based Gonzalez Research and Marketing Strategies for the Maryland, My Maryland PAC shows Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown leading Republican Larry Hogan 47 to 43 percent.

Retiring State Del. Robert A. “Bob” Costa, R-Anne Arundel and chairman of the super PAC, said the poll shows that Hogan’s message focusing on the economy and taxes is resonating with voters.

“We’re not hearing the same things from Brown,” Costa said. “He’s talking about his time with Martin O’Malley.”

The statewide poll of 805 likely voters took place Sept. 16-23. The margin of error on the poll is 3.5 percent.

According to the poll, both Democrats and Republicans share some common concerns about the election.

Democrats ranked economy and jobs as their top issue followed respectively by education.

Republicans ranked taxes as their number one concern followed by the economy and jobs.

The poll backs up reports of another survey taken prior to the Gonzalez poll that was reportedly paid for by a top state Democrat that found Brown held 6 point lead over Hogan and another poll paid for by the Maryland Republican Party that showed Hogan trailing by three points—within the margin of error.

A CBS-New York Times poll last month reported Brown leading by 14 points. That survey has been widely discredited because of it’s over-sampling of black voters and its use of internet click through ads to obtain results.

There have been other suggestions of a narrowing race including support Brown is receiving from the Democratic Governors Association, which is purchasing ads supporting Brown. Gov. Martin O’Malley also took time last week from his pre-presidential campaign rounds to assist his lieutenant governor.

Maryland My Maryland PAC is registered as an independent expenditure group and can raise unlimited amounts of money that can be spent on behalf of a candidate as long as there is no coordination. A similar entity called One State, One Future has raised and spent money on behalf of Brown.

Costa, who described himself as a long-time friend of Hogan, said the PAC ” is dedicated to the election of Larry Hogan in November.”

“The PAC will make data-driven decisions to determine how best to drive compelling messages to the most persuadable voters,” Costa said. “The primary efforts will be to inform voters of the important differences between Anthony Brown and Larry Hogan through TV ads and digital advertising.”

2 comments

  1. There are always so many polls around election day. But how can a paper, if they are accurately following their own ethics code of unbiased reporting write an article with such falsehoods? This “PAC” is run by a retiring Republican delegate! That doesn’t smell of skewed results to you? It does to me. This represents nothing for me. This is not an independent poll, not at all. We won’t know anything until Nov. 4th and with exit numbers from early voting.

  2. Matthew Weinstein

    According to the Washington Post at http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/md-politics/brown-holds-narrow-lead-over-hogan-in-md-governors-race-poll-says/2014/10/01/9d2b54e6-499a-11e4-b72e-d60a9229cc10_story.html, “The firm said it projected that 25 percent of voters will be African American… African Americans accounted for 28 percent of the electorate in 2010, the last year Maryland held a gubernatorial contest, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, and 27 percent of voters in 2006.” Is it really likely that the black share of the vote will decline by 10% compared to four years ago, especially with the prospect of electing Maryland’s first African-American governor?

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