Maryland Democratic Poll Means Nothing, But Says Plenty

2022 is starting to look a lot like 2018

Maryland Matters reported this morning about a Democratic Statewide Poll commissioned by State Senator Douglas Peters.

The results:

  • Rushern Baker: 21.9%

  • Peter Franchot: 17.9%

  • Tom Perez: 10.3%

  • Doug Gansler: 3.7%

  • Wes Moore: 2.0%

  • John King: 1.0%

  • Mike Rosenbaum: 1.0%

  • Jon Baron: 0.7%

  • Ashwani Jain: 0.3

  • Undecided: 41.2%

The Gonzales Poll only sampled 301 like Democrats, meaning it has a whopping margin of error of 5.8%. That means that there’s a wide variability within the results. Baker and Franchot are practically in a dead heat when you look at it like that. It also means that half the field is within the margin of error of existing at all.

With a margin of error this large, there is only so much that you can extrapolate from the poll. We can break the field right now into three distinct groups:

  • Frontrunners: Baker, Franchot, Perez

  • Mid-carders: Gansler, Moore

  • Thanks for Playing: King, Rosenbaum, Baron, Jain

Even then, you can’t take any of that to the bank. Much like many of the polls in 2018, the results amount to a rounding error. In that regard, the poll means nothing.

But speaking of 2018, the poll still says plenty. Here’s what I reported on about a Democratic gubernatorial poll in February 2018:

Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III fares the best among the potential Democratic challengers, with 19 percent saying they support his campaign. Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz receives 12 percent and former NAACP president Ben Jealous follows with 10 percent.

The poll found the rest of the field in the single digits. Tech entrepreneur Alec Ross has 3 percent support, while state Sen. Richard S. Madaleno Jr., attorney James Shea and former Michelle Obama aide Krishanti Vignarajah each received 2 percent.

Does this look familiar? Baker leading the field? Another major career Democrat in 2nd? A national Democrat trying to find his footing across the state in 3rd? The rest of the field trailing far behind? Over 40 percent undecided?

Now, no head-to-head polling has been done between the Democratic and Republican nominees yet. But the parallels are, again, similar. The Democratic field is divided among a bunch of has-beens and never-will-bes. The Republican candidate, Governor Larry Hogan in 2018 and Secretary Kelly Schulz in 2022, has the primary field practically to themselves. But 2022 is starting to look at lot like 2018.

It’s very clear Democrats have learned no lessons from the 2018 election. They remain a total dumpster fire.