Trump Slams Maryland Gov. Hogan Ahead of Primary

Trump Slams Maryland Gov. Hogan Ahead of Primary larry hogan puts on a face mask during a news conference Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By Luca Cacciatore | Monday, 18 July 2022 10:43 PM EDT

A day before Maryland's gubernatorial primary, former President Trump laid into incumbent Gov. Larry Hogan, calling him a "Shutdown RINO" (Republican in name only) over his COVID-era lockdown policies.

Trump took to Truth Social on Monday to advocate for his preferred candidate, state Delegate Dan Cox. He also took aim at Cox's top Republican challenger, Hogan-backed former Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly Schulz.

"Maryland, tomorrow is a big day," Trump wrote. "Get out and vote for Dan Cox for governor. Get rid of Shutdown RINO Larry Hogan who is trying to get another RINO into office, Kelly Schulz," the former president wrote.

"Dan Cox will be a great governor. Tomorrow is the day. Get out and vote!" he added.

Hogan, a self-described moderate, is ineligible to run for a third term as governor under state law. However, the blue state governor has floated the possibility of running for president in 2024.

In a phone interview with CBS News last week, Hogan said he was weighing the possibility of running more and more due to his belief that Republicans are fed up with the former president.

"There's a diminishing number of folks that are wanting the former President Trump to run," the Maryland governor told the network. "There's a growing number of people that are looking for our kind of successful, bigger-tent politics."

Still, polls to succeed the anti-Trump Republican for governor have been close, with one conducted by Goucher College in late June showing Cox at 25% and Schulz at 22%. Other minor candidates totaled 7%, and a whopping 45% said they were still unsure.

Democrats have an even more open field competing Tuesday. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot, Wes Moore, and former Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez are all virtually tied in surveys.