Balancing Act: Two Most Popular U.S. Governors Are Republicans In Deep Blue states

Republicans Charlie Baker of Massachusetts and Larry Hogan of Maryland are the two most popular governors in America, and they’re also cruising to re-election in two of the bluest states in the country.

While the rest of the country braces for a potential anti-GOP wave, Mr. Baker and Mr. Hogan have overseen strong state economies and found ways to avoid the nasty divisions over President Trump that have ensnared the political conversation in so many other races.

They’ve hewed to the center on hot-button issues such as immigration, and have also avoided Trump-style rhetorical bombs, leaving them with approval ratings that would be the envy of any governor.

Mr. Baker had a 70 percent approval rating and Mr. Hogan was at 67 percent — first and second in the country, respectively — according to Morning Consult’s latest tally sheet.

GOP strategist Ford O’Connell said Republican voters will give some leeway to the governors on key party issues like guns and abortion if that’s what it takes to win in tough areas.

“There’s no point in being able to push the map and go to places where we don’t normally go just because someone isn’t a pure polemic and then cut off our nose to spite ourselves,” Mr. O’Connell said.

Mr. Hogan has also gone through a public bout with skin cancer this year, adding a personal element to his persona as a successful businessman.

“Being a cancer survivor and being someone who’s really done what is largely seen as a good job in his state — both economically and not resorting to partisan tactics — has served him well,” Mr. O’Connell said.

Read more from David Sherfinski at The Washington Times

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Analysis & Political Strategy