Larry Hogan, John Lofton, and the role of government


Richard Cross sums up the situation from this afternoon as he saw it, and I would definitely agree about the buzz even if I slightly disagree about the question:

So, when I got home from the office, my Facebook feed was a-buzzin’ over an interview GOP gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan did with John Lofton.
Well, I’m not sure you can even call it an “interview,” as it consisted of Lofton asking Hogan one vaguely out-there question: “What do you think is the purpose of government.”
To me it sounds like a perfect essay question for a Political Science 101 final, but not necessarily for a gubernatorial candidate. I would have led off with “Why are you running in a state no Republican can win,” myself.

I think it’s a legitimate question that I’d like to hear Hogan, and all of the other candidates in either party, answer. It’s a question I’ve heard asked and answered countless times before in a political context.

Click here to hear the exchange between Lofton and Hogan.

Cross goes on to give some background information on John Lofton.

Here’s a quick blurb from Lofton’s Wikipedia entry:

John Lofton is an American conservative political commentator and editor of The American View radio program run by Michael Peroutka. Lofton has also been a newspaper editor, a journalist, a columnist, and a political advisor. Describing himself as a “recovering Republican,” Lofton is most closely allied with the Constitution Party.

Lofton edited Monday, the weekly publication of the Republican National Committee, from 1970–1973. He later became a syndicated columnist for United Features Syndicate whose columns appeared in 100 newspapers from 1973–1980. He became a columnist for the Washington Times in 1982. During his seven years at the Washington Times, Lofton became nationally known in print and on the nascent cable news circuit.

Lofton advised Pat Buchanan’s Presidential campaign and was the Communications Director for the 2004 Michael Peroutka Presidential campaign.

Here’s the appearance by Lofton on Morton Downey Jr.’s show that Cross references:

Here’s an exchange Lofton had with Frank Zappa on Crossfire that resulted in Zappa saying to Lofton, “How about you kiss my ass, how about that?”

Cross makes some valid points about Lofton and gets in a nice Morton Downey reference. I had heard other less eloquent people online earlier (Hogan supporters) who were just reflexively shooting the messenger out of blind loyalty. Of course, that fits the Hogan campaign’s m.o. in my past experience.

Lofton mentions during the recording that the call with Hogan took place a couple of weeks ago and that Hogan apparently got disconnected. He implies that Hogan might have hung up on him and then discusses his phone call with what he identifies as a female press person with the Hogan campaign who told him Hogan had to go the day of the call.  I assume the press person he talked to was Hannah Marr.

I used to get Change Maryland press releases from Hannah Marr until I made the mistake of replying to one with a question she didn’t like apparently. The next day I didn’t get a subsequent Change Maryland release emailed from her (I did get it easily from another blogger.) Of course, that wasn’t the first thin-skinned overreaction from the Hogan machine towards something I wrote and I’m sure it won’t be the last.

The Lofton-Hogan exchange on its own won’t amount to much either for or against Larry Hogan. The aggregate effect of whatever patterns it might fit into will be the real story.

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton is an award-winning blogger who has been aggregating and blogging since 1998. He has worked as a reporter, in government, and as a communications professional in Columbia, SC and Washington, DC.

Quinton is a native South Carolinian who has lived in Baltimore since 2006. He is a recent convert to the Catholic Church and is active in the Knights of Columbus. He has been involved in the pro-life movement nationally and locally since 2010.

Quinton is a veteran who served as an intelligence analyst in the Army National Guard. He is also an Eagle Scout.
Jeff Quinton