No. 1: Larry Hogan
GOVERNOR, STATE OF MARYLAND
Success can be daunting for Republican politicians in Maryland. But Gov. Larry Hogan has enjoyed immense popularity in a heavily Democratic state, becoming just the second Republication governor to win reelection and the first since 1954.
Hogan cited his father and namesake, Larry Hogan Sr., who represented Maryland in Congress from 1969 to 1975 and served as Prince George’s County executive from 1978-1982, as his most important mentor.
“My dad has always been my biggest inspiration and the person I am most proud of,” said Hogan, 64. “When he was in Congress, his vote to impeach President Nixon cost him his party’s nomination for governor, but history proved that it was the right thing to do. That courageous action is what he is most remembered and admired for today.
“When I was elected governor, nobody was more excited than him,” Hogan added. “I said, ‘Dad, it may have taken 40 years, but we are finally going to have a Larry Hogan as the governor of Maryland.’ I would not be where I am today without him.”
Hogan Sr. died in 2007.
Hogan Jr., who served as chairman of the National Governors Association from 2019-2020, has positioned himself as a centrist. He flirted with the idea of challenging Donald Trump for the GOP nomination for president last year and has laid the groundwork for a possible run for the White House in 2024.
Entering the final two years of his stint as governor, Hogan said his biggest hope this year is for the state’s health and economic re-covery. “I’m looking forward to when we can finally take off our masks, get our kids back into school, and go to our favorite crowded restaurant with family and friends,” he said.
Hogan said he does his best to occasionally turn off his phone and his iPad to walk his dogs, Anna and Chessie, and catch up on Netflix with his wife, Yumi.
He added: “There is nothing I love more than spending time with my four grandkids, and I’m looking forward to finally being able to spend time with them in person.”