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Poll: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan holds 20-point lead over Dem challenger

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) holds a 20-point lead over his Democratic gubernatorial challenger Ben Jealous, according to a new poll.

Hogan leads Jealous 58 to 38 percent among likely voters in the The Washington Post/University of Maryland poll released Tuesday.

When he was first elected in 2014, Hogan became only the second Republican governor in Maryland in nearly 50 years. The state was carried by Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.

Hogan has managed to maintain the double-digit lead despite there being a 2:1 ratio of Democrats in the state. Still, 57 percent of respondents in the poll said they would prefer a Democratic-controlled state legislature if Hogan were to win the governor's race.

Michael Hanmer, research director for the Center for American Politics and Citizenship at the University of Maryland, discussed the huge lead for Hogan just weeks from the election.

"If [Jealous] hasn't gotten through just yet, I don't see how there's much room at this point. The level of support for Hogan, even among registered Democrats, is extremely high," Hanmer said.

Hogan is viewed favorably by a majority of registered voters in the poll, 68 percent, compared to 18 percent who view him unfavorably and 14 percent who expressed no opinion. 

By contrast, Jealous was viewed favorably by 36 percent of registered voters and unfavorably by 32 percent. A whopping 32 percent of voters expressed no opinion about the former NAACP president, suggesting he is struggling with name ID in the race.

And since a June Post-UMD survey, Jealous's unfavorable ratings have doubled in the poll while his favorable ratings have increased by just 3 points.

The latest Post-UMD survey of 814 registered voters and 648 likely voters was conducted via landline and cellphone Oct. 4-7 and has a margin of error of 4 points for registered voters and 4.5 points for likely voters. 

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