Will Obama’s Endorsements Matter in Maryland?

Former President Barack Obama decided to enter Maryland Politics by endorsing Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Ben Jealous, Speaker of the House Michael Busch and 9B District Democratic House candidate Courtney Watson in Howard County.

Obama’s endorsement of Jealous is bigger than most people want to admit. Jealous must do well in the big three jurisdictions of Baltimore City, Montgomery and Prince George’s County to defeat Gov. Larry Hogan. Polls show him winning in those three areas, but he needs to win all three with a wide margin to beat Hogan. Obama had a lot of support in those areas and that might be able to help Jealous gain some votes.

His endorsement of Watson is a little surprising. There are a few Democrats that have a slim chance of beating any Republican House incumbent. Although it will be close, I think the Hogan-Kittleman combination should be more than enough to help Del. Robert Flanigan defeat Watson.

Is Michael Busch in trouble? A poll back in August showed Gov. Hogan winning Busch’s 30A District 71 to 21 percent over Jealous. Is there a concern that the Democratic Speaker and his running mate Alice Cain could lose to both Republicans Bob O’Shea and Chelsea Gill in District 30A that Obama was asked to endorse Busch? If so, I don’t think the former President’s endorsement will help him that much in this Anne Arundel County based district. If Busch wins, it will be a result of his name ID and not Obama.

So I do worry that Obama’s endorsement of Jealous could help the Democrats, but I don’t think it will make a difference in 9B and 30A. What are your thoughts?

Can Hogan’s Numbers Help Miller and Busch’s GOP Opponents?

Gov. Larry Hogan is doing well across the state of Maryland. Hogan is so strong that the Maryland GOP website reported that Hogan is beating Democrat Ben Jealous 57 to 28 percent in Mike Miller’s 27th District and has an unbelievable 71 to 21 percent lead over Jealous in Michael Busch’s District.

Since Hogan is dominating in their Districts could it transfer over to their local GOP opponents? It’s possible but I’m not sure about probable.

District 27th Senate Race

Sen. Mike Miller is being challenged by Republican Jesse Allan Peed. Of course Miller is loaded with cash as his Tuesday campaign finance report showed him with $665,000.

This is a rematch from 2014 where Peed got 37.4 percent of the vote and that was with Hogan only getting 52 percent of the vote against Anthony Brown. With Peed’s name ID from four years ago and with Hogan’s projected higher numbers, Peed should get at least 40 percent of the vote in 2018. The problem is that Peed doesn’t even have $665.00 in his account as his records only showed him with $482.01.

If Peed could raise a couple grand, maybe some of the statewide donors might consider sending money into Peed’s account. He obliviously won’t match Miller but $20,000 to $25,000 in the bank could help make Peed competitive.

District 30 A House of Delegates Race

Michael Busch is the Delegate in this district along with GOP Delegate Herb McMillan. There was some excitement for the GOP as former Congressional candidate Mark Plaster entered this race. Many dreamed of McMillan and Plaster knocking out Busch in this two-member district, but then McMillan decided not to seek re-election and Plaster dropped out of the race.

The dream scenario of taking Busch’s seat could turn into a GOP nightmare as McMillan’s vacant seat is in play for Democrat Alice Cain.

The good news is that Republican candidate Bob O’Shea has just under $20,000 in the bank compared to Cain’s $26,818 and Hogan’s endorsement and poll numbers should help O’Shea retain McMillan’s seat.

The wild card in this race is my friend and former colleague Chelsea Gill. She has little money compared to Busch who has over $253,000. It is a real David vs. Goliath battle, but Chelsea proved a lot of doubters wrong to win her primary. She also has the endorsement of Larry Hogan and I’m pulling for her.