ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Governor Larry Hogan sharply criticized President Donald Trump and Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh during a press conference the day after his historic victory.
Hogan became only the second Republican in Maryland history to win a second term—soundly defeating his Democratic party challenger Ben Jealous.
“I didn’t govern as a Republican. I was the governor for all of the people right down the middle,“ Hogan sad. “I’ve governed from day one saying I was going to reach across the aisle in a bipartisan way.“
Hogan blamed the President for dragging down Republicans in Maryland, where Democrats picked up two suburban county executive seats.
“We had President Trump say the election should be about him even though he’s not on the ballot, and in Maryland, that’s exactly what happened,” he said. “It was a repudiation of a president who lost this state by 30 points. People came out and expressed their frustration with just about every Republican on the ballot except for us.”
Hogan is one of the only high-profile Republican leaders not to get a call from Trump congratulating him on his victory—not that he minds.
“I’ve been concerned about the tone. I was concerned about the negative politics, the divisiveness, and I think most people are sick and tired of it.”
Hogan said, “There’s no question the Republican party has to take a look at itself not only in Maryland but also across the country. I think I’ll be a part of that discussion.”
In July, Hogan will take over as chairman of the National Governors Association. He is currently vice-chair.
The governor told reporters his second term would be much like his first. “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it,” he said.
Hogan also said he would push for an independent committee to redraw what he called Maryland’s “crazy gerrymandered [congressional] districts.”
WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren asked the governor about curbing violent crime in Baltimore. Hogan was critical of Mayor Catherine Pugh. “We’re providing all of the backup and support that we can, but we need more leadership from the mayor, and we need a police commissioner who stays there more than a few months. We’ve had five of them since I’ve been governor.”