UPDATE: As I previously noted, I had heard that Larry Hogan’s schedule conflict was another meeting. A source close to the Charles County GOP told me it was apparently a Lions Club event or meeting. I have sent emails to multiple people in the Hogan camp since last night seeking comment on what the scheduling conflict is, but as of 3:26 on 2/28 I have not gotten an answer on where Hogan will be tonight. I do understand that Hogan is having breakfast with central committee members in another county Saturday morning.
I heard a few weeks ago from a Charles County GOP source that all of the gubernatorial candidates would not be attending their Lincoln-Douglass Dinner tomorrow night in Waldorf.
My source said that the campaign of Larry Hogan said that he had a scheduling conflict and would not be able to make it. The Charles County GOP had to request that Boyd Rutherford be sent in Hogan’s place. David Craig, Ron George, Charles Lollar (a resident of Charles County who was previously appointed to fill a vacancy on the Central Committee), and Brian Vaeth will all be there.
I’m not going to knock Hogan for having a scheduling conflict. These things happen. I’ve wondered aloud before when other campaigns, including that of Lollar, made some seemingly boneheaded decisions on what events to go to when there was a conflict. I’m not even going to criticize Hogan for that, because it wasn’t made entirely clear to me what the conflict was. It does look a little weird when every other candidate is there and Hogan chose another event over it.
I do have to wonder, however, if the keynote speaker invited by the Charles County Republican Central Committee, has anything to do with Hogan not being there. The keynote speaker is Bishop E.W. Jackson, who ran unsuccessfully for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia last year. Whether you love Jackson or hate him, he has been maligned in the media for statements he has made. It wouldn’t be inaccurate to refer to him as controversial in some circles. The people in the Charles County GOP don’t think so since they invited him. Neither do any of the candidates who are going to be there. The Hogan campaign did agree to send Hogan’s running mate after it was requested.
Is Hogan being cautious about this? He has already distanced himself from any social issues, claiming they won’t be at the forefront. It would appear that extends to not even discussing them behind the scenes with groups who might be of assistance to his election. Is he being so cautious, in light of the perception that he flip-flopped on abortion in the past, because he thinks pictures of him with Jackson may come back to haunt him in the general election in a state as hard left as Maryland if he even manages to win the primary? Is Hogan afraid of being misquoted if he were to say something good about Jackson while there, like his people allege happened with Larry Hogan and abortion in 1992? Or is this whispering about Hogan’s planned absence just Republicans in Charles Lollar’s home county feeling snubbed by Hogan?
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.