The Post’s new poll is less favorable to Republican Larry Hogan than some others, though it still shows considerable narrowing from an 18-point difference early in the summer. It also makes clear that the remaining gap is entirely owing to the gigantic Democratic edge among D.C.-orbit voters (who tend to tune out state politics; Gov. Martin O’Malley, who has become unpopular in the rest of the state, still coasts along with high numbers around D.C.). Even in this relatively unfavorable poll Hogan is leading in traditional battleground Baltimore County by 11 points, but the Post has him trailing in Montgomery and Prince George’s County by a very wide margin (the numbers, for whatever reason, appear to no longer be online).
Is a month long enough to educate enough residents of Rockville and Silver Spring and Greenbelt and Fort Washington about what the rest of the state knows so well? One indication of just how much education remains to be done during the campaign’s final month is found in this truly surreal sentence from the story by John Wagner and Peyton M. Craighill (emphasis added): “voters give the nod to Brown on health care, despite his oversight last year of the state’s botched rollout of its online health insurance exchange.”
As I’ve said before, most well-educated, civic-minded D.C. suburbanites I’ve met simply don’t know about Brown’s leading role in the colossal, expensive health exchange fiasco. If only a newspaper of wide circulation and journalistic ambition in this coverage area — say, the Washington Post — had kept on the story long enough and with enough reporting muscle to get the word out!