Although we may disagree about some of the entries on this list, there can be no doubt what the top political story of 2014 was. Larry Hogan’s stunning and decisive victory in the gubernatorial election seemed a remote possibility early in the year. Even as Nov. 4 approached, few observers saw Hogan taking the lead much less winning by the margin that he did.
What makes this the most important political event of the past year, however, is its importance for the next four. Hogan will not only control the Executive Branch of state government but will also have an opportunity to reshape the political landscape of Maryland. Whether he is actually able to do that will depend on the choices he makes and the skill that he demonstrates, but there will also be other factors outside of his immediate control.
Will he be able to forge a constructive working relationship with the leadership of the General Assembly? Can he shake the state economy out of its doldrums? Will he be able to convince voters that he is a problem solver, not an ideologue or a captive of the extreme right wing of his party?