Government & Policy

Power of perseverance: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan on leadership, combating divisiveness, and overcoming obstacles, both personal and political

March 2, 2022

Power of perseverance: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan on leadership, combating divisiveness, and overcoming obstacles, both personal and political

Larry Hogan

Governor of the State of Maryland

Willy and Governor Hogan discuss the state of politics in America, the future of the Republican Party, and the importance of integrity.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan is determined to bridge the political divide. As one of only two Republican governors to be re-elected for a second term in Maryland's 242-year history, Governor Hogan is creating change and “making the most out of every day.”

On this episode of the Walker Webcast, Willy and Governor Hogan discuss the state of politics in America, the future of the Republican Party, leadership during Covid-19, the importance of integrity, and his battle with stage 3 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.    

Willy begins the conversation by asking if Governor Hogan ever considered following the same path as his father, Congressman Larry Hogan, Sr. The governor shares that he wanted to be a basketball coach when he was younger and is a late bloomer in politics. He cites his father's most important lessons on integrity and public service.  Hogan Sr. was the first Republican member of the House Judiciary Committee to call for the impeachment of President Richard Nixon. He showed independence as a political leader, putting the country above the party, and insisted on a fair and transparent process. Governor Hogan embodies his father’s traits in his brand of politics and is recognized nationally as a strong, independent leader who consistently delivers real results and achieves common-sense, bipartisan solutions.

Governor Hogan recalls the funny story of how he "rebelled" as a young adult by supporting Ronald Reagan while his father was in favor of Gerald Ford. He pulls inspiration from the Reagan presidency, which has guided him throughout his political career.

Governor Hogan shares, "Most people in America want to elect leaders, regardless of their party affiliation that are willing to work together, to focus on solving problems. And unfortunately, that's not what's happening in Washington, where we're just at the state Capitol here in Annapolis, we're 30 miles down the road from the nation's capital, and we couldn't be more different, working together and getting things done on any number of issues."

Willy and Governor Hogan recall his first campaign in 2014. As a small businessman who had never held elective office, he ran with a small budget to address massive problems such as job shortages, tax inflation, and the opioid crisis. "Nobody was even paying attention to our race as if we had no chance at all. But as I traveled around the state, I saw the struggling middle-class families were suffering, and small businesses were being hurt. We just went out with a grassroots campaign. I started a group called Change Maryland. I went all across the state just talking to people. We had very little funding. We weren't expected to win. It was a big shocker because I pulled off the biggest surprise upset in America in 2014."

Upon his election, Governor Larry Hogan shares his experience of finding out a life-threatening cancer diagnosis. "I was just on the way from the doctor to the governor's mansion. Remembering Tim McGraw's great song called ‘Live Like You're Dying,’ I decided to make the most out of every day."

As the President of the National Governors Association all through COVID, Hogan had no hesitation in saying what he thought and speaking out, even if it was unpopular, particularly pointing out issues with former President Donald Trump. His term ends in January of 2023, and Willy asks if Governor Hogan hasn't ruled out running for President. They conclude by thanking the leaders who have inspired them.

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