Doubtless you have seen by now this post from Maryland Matters about the Goucher College poll this week on the Maryland Governor's race, as well as this article from Maryland Reporter regarding the poll released this week on the Howard County Executive's race. And if you have really been studying, you have also read Sparty's analysis of the Howard County Executive's race poll in this post.
I write this morning to not just analyze the polls, and the posts regarding the polls, but the articles that were written regarding the polls. Makes sense? If you're Correspondent Ken, I'm sure it doesn't. He's somewhere having trouble with the instructions to "Chutes and Ladders." But while everyone else is playing human Candyland, I'm playing human 3-D Chess! And so, to wit:
Maryland Matters is the best thing going today in terms of analyses and discussion of issues regarding Maryland politics. It's what I want to be when I grow up. And it's article on the Goucher Poll is well-written, objectively stated, and pretty sobering, especially for Democrats.
I haven't written or frankly thought too much about the Governor's race so far, because it seemed to me that Ben Jealous's campaign was kind of doing their own thing. Which I thought was odd, since Jealous and his campaign did an incredible job of coming out from the pack to win the Democratic primary going away. But the poll indicates that not only did that momentum stall, that it has in fact regressed.
Still, it seems that there is room for growth for Jealous per the Goucher poll's data. Poll respondents are still inclined to support a candidate for Governor looking to bring change, as opposed to stability. The problem is, except for younger voters and voters who are people of color, poll respondents seem much more inclined to believe that the current Governor is that candidate. That's how I see it. I encourage you to go to the link I provided above, read the poll results, and come to your own conclusions.
Onto the Maryland Reporter artricle about the County Executive's race. Ironically, it was Ben Jealous this week who called the marylandreporter.com website a right-wing shill. Not his exact words, though "right wing" was used. I've more thought of marylandreporter.com a place where embittered Mandel-era Democrats go to journalistically die, and this article reinforces that view.
First off, I believe that Sparty's analysis of this poll is a valid one. Especially his own crunching of his numbers. And before you doubt what I'm saying, he correctly wrote about how Allan Kittleman could win in 2014-- and Kittleman's actual numbers pretty much hit Sparty's scenario. Anyway, I do believe that the three parts of Sparty's summarized analysis make sense, and that all three will come to pass. Whether these things passing flips the narrative, we will see when people actually go to the polls.
Now to the Maryland Reporter article. I've known Len Lazarick for a long time. I like Len. If memory serves, Len worked for Liz Bobo when she was County Executive. Len also writes a political column for The Business Monthly.
All that said, it is unconscionable for someone who knows so much about Howard County to write an article that idiotically says so many wrong things. Honestly, Len should be ashamed with how this article was written. And if the pieces I'm about to point out were the work of an editor, then Len should resign from Maryland Reporter immediately and make that known.
So, check this passage out:
"In the County’s two traditionally Democratic council districts, “Ball’s leads are far narrower than average,” said Coker. He is ahead in his own 2nd Council District by 52%-41% and in the 4th Council District by 47%-42%.
Meanwhile, Kittleman is carrying the traditionally “swing” 3rd Council District by 51%-36%. He is also winning the traditionally Republican council districts by wide margins – carrying the 1st Council District by 62%-27% and the 5th Council District by 69%-23%."
What the hell?
I went to the source material-- the poll itself-- to see if the characterizations of Howard County's districts are the pollster's license and not the author's. And they were. So there is some sloppy editing there, as I mentioned above. But also, it's the responsibility of the reporter to call this out. And Len does not. (Frankly, Brad Coker is a longtime Maryland pollster and he, too, should know better. But I'll give him a bit of a pass on this one. It's not like he shows up at every single Howard County political event of value. Not like....oh, Len Lazarick?)
But.... the "Swing" 3rd District? The one that Howard County Republicans haven't fielded a candidate in since 2010 and won't until at least 2022? Really? And the "traditionally Republican" 1st District? The one that has elected Beltram, Drown, Merdon, Watson, and Weinstein? Which would be a total of three Ds and two Rs. I could get calling that district the swing district, because it is.
The point I'm making in this is that someone steeped in Howard County politics, and who brags about that claim and uses it as a platform for a statewide presence, should know better. That Len Lazarick does not is not just symptomatic of someone who's lost a few mph off their fastball. It's a symbol of trash journalism and is a mark of shame upon this reporter's entire career. As a result, I may still like Len, but I can't take a single thing he writes seriously again, ever. Not even if he writes about how awesome I am and this blog is. I can't respect someone who so fundamentally misunderstands and misrepresents how this place works and believes.
Let's be careful out there.
#hocopolitics #mdpolitics #hocoelections #mdelections