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The Kerry Pick Won’t Be A Problem For the Senate

[ 58 ] February 1, 2013 |

Brown not running.

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  1. Erik Loomis says:

    I will only say that we thought the same about Kennedy’s replacement. Let’s hope Ed Markey runs a real campaign.

    • mark f says:

      Markey shows up at every crappy Democratic Party function in the state to shake hands and give a speech. I don’t think there’s much chance he’ll pull a Martha.

      • JL says:

        This. The guy’s more refined and genteel and less of a brawler type than his friend/neighbor/ally Capuano, but he works damn hard at all the thankless party-building stuff and is happy to get down in the dirt of politicking and campaigning.

        (Markey is my current representative, Capuano is my former representative.)

    • sharculese says:

      Over at Salon, Steve Kornacki ran down the GOP’s options now that Brown is out of the picture, and it’s not… inspiring.

      I mean yeah, Brown came out of nowhere, but I just don’t see lightning striking twice. Which isn’t say that the eventual Democratic nominee gets to forgo actually campaigning.

    • Joe says:

      Who’s the attractive Scott Brown-like competition in this fear scenario?

    • Let’s hope Ed Markey runs a real campaign.

      Martha Coakley’s crappy Democratic campaign would have beaten Scott Brown’s skillful Republican campaign in Massachusetts any time except early 2010.

    • John says:

      I will only say that you were one of the people repeatedly warning us that Scott Brown had practically already won Kerry’s Senate seat.

  2. Johnny Sack says:

    Shocking! Kerry’s seat is up again in 2014, so he would have to prepare for reelection immediately, basically (not unlike a Representative, but on a wider scale). I think if Kerry were just re-elected, he probably would have decided to run.

    But anyway, he doesn’t want to go down in history as this sort of…accidental quasi-Senator, which he sort of already is. I mean, think about it. If he wins, he finishes Kerry’s term, and less than a third of it is left. So he’s up for reelection almost immediately in 2014 (not unlike a Rep, I guess).

    If he lost reelection again? He goes down in history as the guy who, when you add together his years in the Senate, they don’t even add up to a full term. His historical footnote would be that he got into the Senate twice in two special elections to enjoy the professional sloppy seconds of Ted Kennedy and John Kerry (and I really mean sloppy seconds-the last remaining bits of two of the most famous and powerful, long-serving Senators from the opposing party. Wow). Two nonconsecutive terms of less than 3 years. He doesn’t want to risk the embarrassment. That’s even worse than Santorum-at least the guy was elected to two full terms in his own right before losing reelection by the widest margin in U.S. history.

    • Johnny Sack says:

      Good grief sorry, would have edited that if it were possible.

    • John says:

      There actually has been a somewhat comparable case to that. John Sherman Cooper, a Kentucky Republican, ran in 1945 to fill out the term vacated by Happy Chandler, who had resigned to become Commissioner of Baseball. He won the election, but then in 1948 was defeated for re-election by Democrat Virgil Chapman. Chapman died in a drunk driving accident in 1951, and Cooper again won the special election to finish out the term in 1952. Then, in the election for the full term in 1954, ex-VP Alben Barkley was the Democratic nominee, and beat Cooper. Eisenhower appointed Cooper ambassador to India as a consolation prize, but then Barkley died in office in 1956, and Cooper for a third time won the special election to finish out the term. Then, finally, in 1960, he won election to a full term.

      I can rather see why Scott Brown might not want to go through that, especially when he has a pretty good shot at winning the gubernatorial election next year.

  3. snarkout says:

    I have to say, if I’m Brown, bailing on this one — a race against a competent politician with two million dollars in the bank, which would be followed by another race in 2014 that he would be less likely to win than the special — in favor of the governor’s race sounds like a smart proposition given Massachusetts voters’ demonstrated willingness to put Republicans in the state house.

    • mpowell says:

      Frankly it makes sense for all concerned. State level Republicans in MA don’t behave like national Republicans. I can understand why MA voters would be more likely to support them at that level.

      • Darkrose says:

        It’s also because the MA Democrats often nominated guys–and I do mean guys–who were slightly to the right of Rick Santorum. The one and only time in my life I voted for a Republican was to keep John Silber the hell away from any elective office.

        That said, I wonder if Mitt Romney may have screwed the pooch for MA Republicans in the governor’s chair.

        • arguingwithsignposts says:

          slightly to the right of Rick Santorum

          Wow. Is that even possible?

        • Davis X. Machina says:

          Hey, what about Frank Hatch against Ed King? Thanks to that relic of BC football in the pre-helmet age, I’ve gotten to vote twice for Republicans in my life.

        • Malaclypse says:

          The one and only time in my life I voted for a Republican was to keep John Silber the hell away from any elective office.

          I was at BU then. I voted for Silber solely to get him further away from me.

        • MAJeff says:

          The one and only time in my life I voted for a Republican was to keep John Silber the hell away from any elective office.

          I know a fair number of MA liberals in that same boat.

          I’ve voted for Republicans twice, both in the same year. (1994) The first was, during the early spring, in a GOP primary for Gov in Iowa, when Fred Grandy was running against Terry Braindead for governor. (for Gopher, against braindead). Shortly after that, I moved to MN and voted for Arne Carlson over Allen Quist in the GOP Gov primary there. (both states had open primaries). Never before or since have I voted for a Republican. Braindead has only moved farther right, and Quist remains one of the most odious Minnesotans alive.

          • efgoldman says:

            I voted for plenty of Republicans in MA. Of course, I’m older than you. Leverett Saltonstall, John Volpe, Ed Brooke, Frank Sargent in ’72, would have been the last one, except I couldn’t vote for that cement head, Ed King. He was, after all “Ronald Reagan’s favorite Democrat” ::ptooie::.
            Of course, if 10% of us hadn’t voted for Barbara Ackerman in the primary “to send Mike Dukakis a message,” Cement-Head king wouldn’t have been nominated. That’s why I never have done that since.

        • It’s also because the MA Democrats often nominated guys–and I do mean guys–who were slightly to the right of Rick Santorum.

          OK, but that doesn’t explain why Jim Roosevelt or Scott Harshbarger lost.

          My theory is this: everyone knows, before the first vote is counted, that the Democrats are going to have a veto-proof majority in both houses of the state legislature. This means that the Speaker of the House and Senate President set the agenda. People want a governor who will act as a check and balance on the Beacon Hill Democratic machine. If the Democratic candidate appears to be too weak, or too close to the state party bigwigs to fill that role, the voters feel perfectly comfortable voting for a Republican, because they know that there is no chance he will be able to implement an affirmative conservative agenda.

          This is why Deval Patrick, a guy from Chicago who made his name in Washington and had no real political background in Massachusetts at all, was the one who finally broke the Republicans’ winning streak.

          • efgoldman says:

            Roosevelt I could understand. He was a good guy, a real liberal, and led a good ed reform effort, but he was also a backbench state legislator, without a real power base.
            Harshbarger pissed off too many of the [whatever the MA equivalent is to good ole boys] by not only investigating them, but actually meaning it. They hated him for it. ‘Course it would never occur to them to do their jobs honestly. Hell no.

          • Jeremy says:

            I’m pretty sure the deciding factor in breaking the Republican streak was Mitt Romney’s governorship. That and his failed efforts to remake the Mass. GOP. I don’t think the Dems majority was actually veto-proof until after Mitt poured a bunch of time and money into getting Republicans elected to the legislature in 2004. Scott Brown won a special election to replace Cheryl Jacques in the State Senate in advance of the rest of the elections, and it looked like a bad omen for the Democrats (and for same-sex marriage, which was facing the threat of a constitutional amendment at the time). But they actually went on to gain seats.

            I still wonder how different things would be if Robert Reich beat Shannon O’Brien in the 2002 primary. Could he have spared the world Mitt’s future political endeavors?

    • efgoldman says:

      … sounds like a smart proposition given Massachusetts voters’ demonstrated willingness to put Republicans in the state house.

      Except all the previously elected GOBP governors in MA were old-line, MA style Republicans. Whoever the Dem nominee is, s/he will do the best to tie Brown to the National GOBP and the crazies. They’ll use LePage’s Mucilage, which used to be made in MA.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Ladies and gentlemen, the new U.S. ambassador to China, Mark Brown!

  5. Anon21 says:

    I never thought it was a real possibility that the GOP would take the seat, even if Brown had jumped in. 2010 was a very weird perfect storm, and I never expected the Massachusetts Dems to be caught napping twice.

  6. jon says:

    It’s still possible to fuck up a baked potato.

  7. efgoldman says:

    Jeebus. Now Dennis & Callahan will have to talk about sports, on the sports station. Probably not a bad idea, since the other sports station has been eating WEEI’s lunch and stuffing the brown bag up their ass.

  8. snoey says:

    How big is Gail Huff in DC TV News?

    Since they already threw the carpetbagger tag at Markey she’d have to give that up if he ran again.

  9. mattc says:

    I don’t understand what the problem for the MA GOP is, here. Just nominate the only other Republican to win statewide office in the past decade:

    MITT ROMNEY FOR SENATE…AGAIN!

  10. If the Kerry pick was going to be a problem for the Senate – that is, if there was a good chance of Brown winning again – he’d be running.

  11. Jeremy says:

    The Boston Globe has a list of five potential GOP candidates. Number five is Keith Ablow, a wingnut psychiatrist who once co-authored a book with Glenn Beck (judging by the cover, it’s about their experiences as a same-sex couple raising a child). He has approximately 0% chance of beating any Democrat with a pulse. The Mass GOP apparently doesn’t have exactly a deep bench.

    The bigger worry for me is that Lynch beats Markey. I don’t think that’s likely, as Lynch’s anti-choice record is a serious drawback in a Massachusetts Democratic primary, but it’s not something to rule out. I hear that Mayor Menino has already all but endorsed Lynch.

    • commie atheist says:

      Keith Ablow, a wingnut psychiatrist who once co-authored a book with Glenn Beck (judging by the cover, it’s about their experiences as a same-sex couple raising a child)

      That would have been first reaction too.

    • efgoldman says:

      The bigger worry for me is that Lynch beats Markey.

      Agreed. The question is, how far and hard will the unions – especially police and fire – go for Stevie, who has been their friend since he was a state rep. These are the unions that went for Ronaldus Magnus, twice, and Bush1. My memory is a little hazy, but they’ve also endorsed at least a couple of the last few GOBP candidates. Whether “endorse” means “work hard ay GOTV for,: I have no idea. Also I’d guess SEIU would go for Markey.
      In a very short primary, in an off-season in an off-year, strange things can happen. See McDreamy, former Senator.

      • efgoldman says:

        Edit edit edit edit……
        “they’ve also endorsed at least a couple of the last few GOBP candidates.” Should be “they’ve also endorsed at least a couple of the last few GOBP candidates for governor.”

    • jon says:

      Where is Jane Swift in our time of need?

      Lynch is a fairly good guy and he’s willing to do the work, but he’s remarkably conservative for a Mass Dem.

  12. Winchester says:

    I’ll always have a soft spot for Scott Brown. After Obama2008.President and Obama2012.President, ScottBrown2010 was my biggest winning ever on Intrade, over $40K. I began biuying him when he was a 10% dog.

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