Hogan internal poll memo omits GOP primary; shows him losing in November

The campaign of Larry Hogan released an internal polling memo today.

From the memo:

The general election brushfire of 400 likely voters was conducted May 6-7, 2014. The sample has a margin of error equal to ±4.9.

The wording of the poll’s questions are not listed in the memo released by the campaign and neither are crosstabs. The composition of the 400 likely voter sample, i.e. the number of Republicans, Democrats, Independents, and others polled, is not mentioned  The memo is included at the bottom of this post.

The big, glaring omission from the memo is where Hogan stands in the Republican primary field right now. It is interesting that they chose not to release that polling data. Release of internal polling data is usually a calculated move, designed to influence the race. In this case, it shows the campaign is continuing their strategy of ignoring the primary horse race and focusing on Hogan’s supposed ability to win in November.The poll indicates that Anthony Brown has a larger primary lead now since the last time they ran this poll in September, with less undecideds on the Democratic side. However, it doesn’t list the question wording and we know nothing about what question was actually asked. Was it asked of the whole 400 likely voter sample or just the Democrats who were polled? If it was asked of just the Democrats then that plays into issues with the sample size and margin of error, as I point out in a bit.

Whatever question they asked and no matter who answered it, it shows Brown up 34% to 20% over Gansler in the primary. Mizeur comes in at 7% and 37% are undecided

Whatever the wording of the general election question, Anthony Brown is leading Larry Hogan 42% to 37% right now, according to respondents to this poll. 23% are undecided.

Here’s what one author said about sample size and margin of error:

Sometimes you’ll see polls with anywhere from 600 to 1,800 people, all promising the same margin of error. That’s because pollsters often want to break down their poll results by the gender, age, race or income of the people in the sample. To do that, the pollster needs to have enough women, for example, in the overall sample to ensure a reasonable margin or error among just the women. And the same goes for young adults, retirees, rich people, poor people, etc. That means that in order to have a poll with a margin of error of five percent among many different subgroups, a survey will need to include many more than the minimum 400 people to get that five percent margin in the overall sample.

Hogan Internal Polling Memo 5-12-14

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


  1. WPA is a legit polling form and I would trust their data. They do a ton of work in races nationwide on the GOP side and have a pretty good track record.

    Why they only reasoned parts, because it’s obviously where it benefits Hogan and where he doesn’t want to give opponents the opportunity at free information that could drive their bases or change their strategies.