MOUNT PLEASANT, Md.
— With Republican candidates vying to hold seats in the state House of Delegates, Democratic leaders are seeking to capitalize on a trend of Republican incumbents dropping out of races in Maryland, where voters have been turning out in record numbers for President Donald Trump’s re-election.
A new Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday showed Republicans running for office are less likely to be endorsed by major party candidates than are Democrats.
It’s the first time since the Quinnipac poll began in 2011 that the party is losing a majority of its House candidates.
Democrats are also trying to win back seats in state legislatures, where they hold a narrow majority of seats.
Brian Frosh is the only Republican running in the House races in the city of Montgomery, where a Democrat has been elected to the U.S. House for seven of the last 10 terms.
Frosh is not running for reelection.
He is running for the seat that is being vacated by former Gov.
Larry Hogan, who was defeated by Democrat Ben Jealous in a special election last week.
Republican Rep. Tom Marino is the latest House Republican to announce he is stepping down from his seat.
He announced his resignation Wednesday.
The House Ethics Committee will look into his possible breach of House rules by failing to report any campaign activity in the final weeks of his reelection bid.
Foley said the poll indicates the public is dissatisfied with the candidates running for seats in Maryland.
“The numbers clearly show that the public wants a real battle,” Foley said.
“I think that it’s incumbent upon the candidates to make it a real campaign, and the public needs to see that.”
Democrats are hoping that a Republican-led effort to flip seats in suburban Maryland will allow them to gain seats in more suburban and rural counties.
The new poll found Democrats running in five suburban counties and two counties outside Baltimore County.
Governor Brian Frohspan said he is disappointed that Republicans are winning seats in Montgomery County.
He said he’s confident that in the coming weeks the state will have a Republican governor, governor-elect and Senate candidate in Montgomery, which has seen a decline in Democratic candidates since the start of the year.
Frey is not ruling out the possibility of running in Montgomery in 2020.
He told reporters he has talked to other candidates in Montgomery and that the GOP is committed to holding the seat.
“We’re going to hold on to Montgomery County and Maryland, and I don’t see it as a loss, because we’ll have a governor and a Senate candidate, and it’ll be a really solid Democratic majority,” Frohspansaid.