Maryland GOP governor says fight for Republican Party’s soul is ‘long far from over’

“There’s no doubt that we’ve lost a battle, and we’re losing a few battles, but the fight is…a long time from being over,” Larry Hogan told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” when he was asked about his fight. to control the party’s future amid former President Donald Trump’s outsized influence over its leadership.

“I can tell you I’m not giving up, it just makes me want to double down and fight what I think is some sort of hostile takeover of the party I love,” he added.

Last week, the Republican state of Maryland, Del. Dan Cox, an election denier who has taken a series of hardline conservative stances, won the time-limited GOP primary nomination to replace Hogan.

The race will be one of the toughest gubernatorial positions for the GOP midway through November, and Cox’s victory showed the willingness of Republican voters to abandon what had been a winning formula in the Deep blue state after Hogan angered his own party with his criticism of Trump and his public safety measures amid the coronavirus pandemic. Hogan had backed Kelly Schulz, his former Commerce Secretary, in that primary, while Trump had endorsed Cox.

But Hogan said Sunday he doubted Cox would secure the governor’s mansion in November.

“I don’t think he has a chance of winning,” Hogan said. “He’s really not a serious candidate.”

When asked if he might vote for Wes Moore, the state’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Hogan said, “I’m going to have to make a decision on that by November, but I’m definitely not going to support this guy.”

And when asked if he would be more likely to consider a presidential race after recent GOP primary results, Hogan was coy.

“It makes me more concerned about the future of the party and more concerned about the future of the country,” Hogan said.

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