Former Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan has made a big announcement that won’t be welcome news for the Democratic Party after he told voters he is running for the U.S. Senate.
Hogan, 67, served as governor of the Old Line State from 2015 to 2023, and is the son of Lawrence Hogan, one of the state’s congressmen who served from 1969 to 1975. He was also a very popular governor during his years in office.
Being from Maryland, he was, of course, a moderate Republican, and even in his announcement he noted he is running as a middle candidate who will “stand up to both parties.”
“I am running for the United States Senate — not to serve one party — but to stand up to both parties, fight for Maryland, and fix our nation’s broken politics,” Hogan said in his campaign announcement on X.
“It’s what I did as Maryland’s governor, and it’s exactly how I’ll serve Maryland in the Senate. Let’s get back to work,” he wrote.
I am running for the United States Senate – not to serve one party – but to stand up to both parties, fight for Maryland, and fix our nation’s broken politics. It’s what I did as Maryland’s governor, and it’s exactly how I’ll serve Maryland in the Senate. Let’s get back to work. pic.twitter.com/d0TuZchAtN
— Governor Larry Hogan (@GovLarryHogan) February 9, 2024
MAGA fans won’t be very warm to Hogan’s run for the Senate because he was an open critic of Donald Trump during Trump’s entire presidency, and even endorsed establishment-o-crat Nikki Haley for 2024.
Indeed, in his video the mask zealot celebrated his congressman father for being a vote to impeach Republican President Richard Nixon.
“Fifty years ago, my father, Maryland Congressman Larry Hogan Sr., made a very tough decision. He became the first Republican to come out for the impeachment of President Nixon,” Hogan said in his video. “He put aside party politics and his own personal considerations and he stepped up to do the right thing for Maryland and the nation.”
“My fellow Marylanders, you know me. For eight years, we proved that the toxic politics that divide our nation need not divide our state,” he said. “We overcame unprecedented challenges, cut taxes eight years in a row, balanced the budget and created a record surplus. And we did it all by finding common ground for the common good,” Hogan said in his announcement video.
“One party alone can’t fix it,” Hogan said. “We desperately need leaders willing to stand up to both parties, leaders that appreciate that no one of us has all the answers or all the power.”
Currently, Maryland hosts two Democrats in the upper chamber, but Democrat Ben Cardin has announced that he will not seek re-election this year, throwing his seat into an open race.
Unfortunately for Democrats, the anti-gun Hogan has a good record of being elected in the Democrat-controlled state. For instance, even as Hillary Clinton easily won the state in 2016, he won election to the governor’s office with a 12-point majority only two years later, in 2018.
There was heavy speculation that he intended to run for president himself in 2024, but ultimately, he announced that he would not take that path for his next step in politics. Republicans also tried to get Hogan to run for Senate in 2022. But it was an offer he declined, Fox News reported.
He actually said at the time that he did not “aspire” to be a U.S. senator. Apparently times have changed.
The announcement comes as bad news to Democrat Rep. David Trone, who has already spent more than $19 million on ads for his own campaign for the seat being vacated by Cardin.
The news might also be a surprise to the fans of the No Labels political movement because until now Hogan has been a principal member of the No Labels coalition.
Seven other Republicans have already announced campaigns for the seat, including retired Brig. Gen. John Teichert. But thanks to his status as a popular former governor, Hogan is now considered the front-runner for the seat.
Should he become Maryland’s next U.S. senator, he won’t be a MAGA vote. But he will be better than a Democrat. So, while marginal, he would be a tiny step in the right direction for the Republican caucus for Maryland. If he wins the primary, he’ll be the more center right candidate than any Democrat.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.