Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R), who is weighing a 2020 presidential bid, told “CBS This Morning” that President Trump made “some real mistakes” in declaring a national emergency over border security.
“I don’t think declaring, using emergency powers was the right thing to do here,” Hogan said. “We’ve exaggerated what’s going on at the border — but we do have issues down there.”
Hogan said he agreed with the decision by Maryland’s Democratic attorney general, Brian E. Frosh, to join more than a dozen other states in filing a lawsuit challenging Trump’s executive order.
Frosh did not need the governor’s approval to file the lawsuit, because the Democratic-controlled General Assembly has given the attorney general blanket authority to sue the federal government.
The Hogan interview, which aired Wednesday morning, was the governor’s latest venture onto the national stage after eschewing such attention during his first term in office. Hogan, who is being courted by the “Never Trump” wing of the Republican Party, appeared on CNN earlier this month.
In each interview, the governor left the door open on a possible presidential campaign.
Hogan said he has been approached about running, adding, “I guess the best way to put is I haven’t thrown them out of my office.”
In transcript excerpts distributed by CBS but not included in the broadcast, Hogan said Trump looks “pretty weak” in a general election but doesn’t appear at the moment to be vulnerable to a primary challenge.
“I don’t know what that’s going to look like three months, six months from now, depending on how he might soften,” Hogan said. “The issue I’m concerned about is he has a very low reelect number. . . . So the chance of him losing in a general election is pretty good. I’m not saying he couldn’t win, but he’s pretty weak in the general election.”
In the aired interview, the governor described Trump as “his own worst enemy.” Hogan said that at times the president acts “irrationally” and does things “in a way that aren’t great for the Republican Party and for the country or for him and his agenda.”
Asked if he thought Trump was fit to be president, Hogan, who did not vote for Trump in 2016, said he was “not in any position to judge the fitness of the president.” He said he doesn’t like the tone that Trump uses.
“I do believe there are people in Congress and other leaders in the Republican Party who have not stood up when they disagree or when they think the president is doing something wrong,” he said. “I’ve not been afraid to do that.”