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MA-Sen: Obama officially nominates Kerry

by: shamlet

Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 10:40:00 AM EST


I love my adoptive state. Special Election Fever, Part Deux: It's on.

President Obama is poised to nominate Senator John F. Kerry this afternoon to be the country’s next secretary of state, according to Washington officials briefed on the decision. The announcement was to come after Kerry returned from the National Cathedral in Washington, where he was attending the funeral of former colleague Senator Daniel Inouye. The White House planned to add the announcement to the president’s schedule, said the officials, who demanded anonymity to preempt the formal announcements.

Kerry is certain to breeze through confirmation, but it's unclear how soon he will resign; the timing of it would affect the special eleciton timing. MA Dems should want him to resign today so the election can be held before students leave town. More likely the resignation will be in mid-January, leading to a special sometime in June.

Great Mentioner - Republicans: Plan A: Scott Brown. Plan B: Bill Weld. Plan C is probably not necessary but would likely be either Charlie Baker or Richard Tisei.

Great Mentioner - Democrats: Expect a bloody primary, with any set of the following as possibilities - Rep. Steve Lynch. Rep. Ed Markey. Rep. Mike Capuano. Outgoing Rep. Barney Frank. AG Martha Coakley. Treasurer Steve Grossman. State Sen. Dan Wolf. State Sen. Ben Downing. US Attorney Carmen Ortiz. Vicki Kennedy. Ted Kennedy Jr. And Ben Affleck.

Head spinning yet? Strap on your seatbelts, this is gonna be fun.

shamlet :: MA-Sen: Obama officially nominates Kerry
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Hello
Senator Brown!!!

27, IL-7, Fiscal Conservative

On second thought
Only Capuano and Coakley of the A listers went for the last open seat.
Difference of course is that then many house members were under the illusion of staying in the majority.

25, Male, R, NY-10

Please not Weld...
I hope Brown will run again...for his old seat...

38, male, Roma ( Italia ), conservative

Weld is a good plan B
I'd love to see Brown win this thing, but I'm not sure it's better than 50-50 for him. 2 losses in rapid succession will really damage his political future, and weaken him for what should be a pretty clear path to the Governor's mansion in 2014.  

34, R, CO-1 (Degette)

[ Parent ]
weld?
Weld has been in NY and he hasn't had elective office in almost 30 years

[ Parent ]
typo 20
Typo 20 years

[ Parent ]
You mean 15?
He was governor from 91-97.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-18

Liberals dream things that never were and ask why not.  Conservatives shout back "Because it won't work"


[ Parent ]
Weld
I like him a lot - he was obviously once incredibly popular, and he's genuinely moderate enough that he wouldn't have the issues balancing his personal beliefs with the interests of the state that Brown seemed to struggle with.

That said, Weld has one big issue in his temperament. I don't want to use the word "flake" because that's overstating it, but consistency is not a strength of his. It came off as very endearing in the 90s but he dances perilously close to the line between good-quirky and bad-quirky. I mean, just last week he was in the news for defending Cahill as just being part of politics as usual. That's not a conventional pol thing to do - and the question is, does he come off as telling it like it is or just dumb? Unfortunately memories are short enough that we can't rely on 15 years ago to give us much clue to that.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
Weld
I am not afraid of Weld putting forward a halfhearted effort.  Weld seems to want this badly.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
I'm not afraid of that either
I've been trying to wrap my mind around how to characterize Weld, and the best way to describe him is as a Hedonist. Most pols either run out of a sense of duty, a desire for power, or a desire for perks. Weld runs because he feels like it.

I feel like he'd run a pretty good campaign, because he'd genuinely have fun doing it; Weld is the absolute archetype of the happy pol that plays very well in Mass. The downside to that is that he can be prone to being seen as not serious about governing, something I really do worry about. In that sense, he's a high-risk, high-reward pick.

The other downside to Weld is that I can't possibly imagine him serving more than one term. He'll be bored stiff by 2020.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
I think Weld would match up better than Brown
if the Dem candidate is Lynch. It would be an odd race in which liberals vote for the more socially liberal GOP candidate.

[ Parent ]
Weld voted for Obama against McCain...that's all
republican party ( especially Mass republican party ) doesnt need people like Weld...they need people like Scott Brown...

38, male, Roma ( Italia ), conservative

[ Parent ]
We need both
Outside of about a half dozen states I'd agree with you, but in MA we kinda have to take what we can get.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
2012
Did Weld endorse a presidential candidate this year? If so, who did he endorse and what reasons did he give for his endorsement? Him voting for Obama seems to me to disqualify Weld from being the Republican nominee.

[ Parent ]
He endorsed Romney very early
They obviously go back a long ways.

Again, the way to look at Weld is as a hedonist. I think he endorsed Obama because he just felt like it. If you're looking for somebody who has grave concern about the future of the country he's not the guy. He's just here to have fun. But for Massachusetts that may be just what the doctor ordered.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
meh
Can Brown win in 2014?

27, R, PA-07.

No
I think Scott Brown cannot win a non Special in MA. He could win the governorship, but I just don't think he can be a senator for more than 2 years.

[ Parent ]
I think he would have won the General in '10
Presidential year will be difficult.  Midterm year (non-special) will be easier and plausible.

[ Parent ]
Yes
Governor would be easier but the turnout in the cities is so much better in midterms here. Senate will be tougher but it's possible with the right opponent and Brown in a midterm.

Baker '14
R, MA-3


[ Parent ]
2010 Special Election turnout....
was similar to the 2010 General Election Turnout.

Only about 60,000 combined fewer voters.


[ Parent ]
In 2014, yes; in 2020, No


42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.

[ Parent ]
2020 shouldn't deter Brown
Brown can win in 2014. If he wins the special election, he'll have the wind at his back. Travis Childers, Bill Foster, and Mark Critz all won their respective special elections and then trounced their opponent in the general. (Granted, they're all congressmen who lost two years, but I think Brown has the political acumen to avoid their misfortunes).

Don't worry about 2020. The Bay State may move to the right in the next eight years. Outside of Boston, it has few minority voters. Once Republicans dump the Santorums and the Bachmanns for the Ryans and Toomeys, they can crush Dems in the South Shore and Worcester region. That's not enough for a GOP revival in MA, but it is for Brown to be a clear favorite for reelection.  

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
And who knows
2020 might be the year a Popular Republican president is up for re-election.  You can't tell these things this far out.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-18

Liberals dream things that never were and ask why not.  Conservatives shout back "Because it won't work"


[ Parent ]
what makes you think they're going to dump them?


Age 21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (college)
politicohen.com.
Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal but not progressive.  For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.

Berkeley Class of 2015.


[ Parent ]
Winning Worcester County and the South Shore is not enough
Scott Brown did very well in both regions, even in his loss.

30, Left leaning indie, MA-7

[ Parent ]
That needs to be the new norm for the GOP
Currently, the South Shore and Central MA are competitive. Scott Brown won them but so did Obama. Both regions have Democratic congressmen (Worcester has ultra-liberal Jim McGovern, which seems like a mismatch for a conservadem bastion). Clearly, we have our work set out for us.

My argument is that once those areas become Republican strongholds MA will lose its rank as one of the most liberal states in the country. Surely, it will still be Democratic in presidential elections. However, the margin will be closer; my guess is a 10 pt difference -- 55-45.

If that's the new normal, then Scott Brown would be a heavy favorite for reelection. In '12, he outperformed the top of the ticket by 6-7 pts. He just needs 5 additional points in future runs to clear the finishing line.

I'm not completely confident about my projection. In order for it to be true, an exodus of white voters from the Democratic Party, which to to this day has been a mainly Southern and Midwestern phenomenon, would need to be seen all over New England. Outside of VT, I think that's entirely possible, given current trend lines.

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Vicki Kennedy
Would be very tough to beat

Yes--but not as tough as last time
She doesn't have the emotional factor of running for her husband's seat, and the media would be less afraid to ask her about her qualifications for office. But she's still a Kennedy, and that makes her very difficult to get any traction against.

[ Parent ]
Placeholder Barney Frank?
http://www.politico.com/blogs/...

Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank isn't ruling out a short-term stint in the U.S. Senate, if President Barack Obama taps Sen. John Kerry to be secretary of state.

He of course wanted to be a Senator 8 years ago had Kerry resigned the seat for the Presidency.

27, R, PA-07.


My out-on-a-limb hunch
Brown passes on the Senate race, runs in 2014, picks Baker for Lt. Gov. and wins. Weld runs in the Senate special and probably loses.

24, MA-07, Rockefeller Republican. Visit me at http://twitter.com/polibeast

Thinking the same
except with Connaughton rather than Baker as LG; I think Brown needs a woman on his ticket and Baker doesn't bring very much as a #2. Baker returns to A&F Secretary under Brown.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
More Weld coverage
http://bostonglobe.com/metro/2...

Clearly, he wants this thing so much.

24, MA-07, Rockefeller Republican. Visit me at http://twitter.com/polibeast


Coakley won't run
http://bostonherald.com/news_o...

Between this and Lynch, a good 48 hours for Massachusetts Democrats.

24, MA-07, Rockefeller Republican. Visit me at http://twitter.com/polibeast


Lynch is running...


[ Parent ]
That's what he meant
He's considering Lynch a strong candidate. Short of Deval or a Kennedy, Lynch is probably best suited for a run against Brown.

[ Parent ]
What about Jim McGovern?
Doesn't he represent a part of the state Brown would do well in?

[ Parent ]
Yes
I've wondered for a while how McGovern would play statewide. He is very well liked in the Worcester area because of his local visibility, but he doesn't have much of a profile outside the towns he's represented. He hasn't had to campaign since 1998 and isn't telegenic. He's liberal enough to fire up the base, ethnic enough to appeal to the older moderates, but he spends way too much time talking about social justice in foreign countries.

I don't think we'll ever find out, though. Worcester candidates do not have a strong track record of winning primaries. (Murray in 2006 was a unique situation since both his opponents were pretty low-profile.)


[ Parent ]
He said he's out
in today's Globe; don't have a link.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Abortion
Brown might be the best GOP candidate, but why does the GOP insist on running pro-choicers in states that are much more pro-life than they are Republican?

35, conservative R, lives in PA-14, grew up in TX

Because pro choice Republicans sometimes win in MA while pro life ones do not
There's a large number of fiscal conservatives that vote Dem because of social issues in the state as well, and they tend to be swingier voters than left leaning pro lifers.

30, Left leaning indie, MA-7

[ Parent ]
Yup
The most ardent pro lifers are straight ticket Republicans. The swing and Dem leaning pro lifers are less concerned with abortion and more concerned with character. Brown and Cellucci appeal to these voters, Weld and Romney to a lesser degree.

The swingy pro choicers are very, very hesitant to vote for a pro lifer if they will at all. The media will also (unfairly) make a huge deal out of abortion for the whole campaign, and it will be all the Dem talks about. That's why Brown is such a great fit--he can appeal to both groups.


[ Parent ]
Abortion
Don Carcieri won in RI and I think he is pro-life.  Why would a similar platform not work in the rest of New England?

35, conservative R, lives in PA-14, grew up in TX

[ Parent ]
RI
is far and away the most socially conservative state in New England.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Ayotte won in NH with 60%
LePage in Maine ( ok 3way but still a win )...Brian Dubie won LT governor office in Vermont and I think Douglas wasnt that socially liberal...

38, male, Roma ( Italia ), conservative

[ Parent ]
Socially apathetic
Many of these candidates are socially apathetic.  

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
Yup
Now a days how you talk is almost as important as your positions.  Ayotte is pretty conservative socially, but she virtually never talks about it, and thats a huge help to her in NH.

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat

[ Parent ]
Agree
I think there is a certain portion of the electorate that is pro status quo in the culture war and wants apathetic candidates.   These voters dislike anyone who focuses too much on these issues.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
Not surprising
Because the pro-lifers aren't swing voters and rarely vote based on the issue.  There are several places in Pennsylvania that are pro-life and anti-Republican.  There are several suburbs of Pittsburgh where they consistently elect pro-life legislators, but will never vote for a Republican even if they are pro-life.

I am kind of the opposite.  I am pro-choice, but almost never vote for a Democrat because I don't vote on the issue.  It matters little to me and the abortion debate in general annoys me.  The only time I am tempted to vote against someone because of the issue is when they are obsessed with it.  Ironically enough where  I live its the Democrats who are obsessed with the issue and it drives me nuts.

28, Republican, PA-6


[ Parent ]
I disagree with the statement that
"the GOP insist on running pro-choicers in states that are much more pro-life than they are Republican".  Pro-choice Republicans (full disclosure - I am one) increasingly find it difficult to get through primaries at any level office.  Right-to-life organizations and primary voters often provide a huge boost to pro-life candidates in winning nominations.

I really don't think abortion should have any relevance for state level offices.  SCOTUS decisions like Roe v. Wade have almost completely eliminated states ability to do anything about abortion.  Since state officials can't legislate much on this issue it is pointless from a policy standpoint and sometimes harmful from a GOP electoral standpoint to favor pro-lifers for state and local offices.  Sometimes the most electable general election candidate is pro-choice.  Sometimes both candidates are equally electable but the pro-lifer is worse on other issues.

As I mentioned earlier, I am a pro-choice Republican but I favor the elimination of Roe v. Wade and would like to see to see the issue returned to the states.  The best way to keep the abortion issue from hurting the party is concentrate all efforts on the Presidency and the US Senate so Roe and other similar cases are overturned and simulaneously drop the issue at the state level.  Right-to-Life should be putting all of their time, money, and effort into the Senate and Presidential races.  It shouldn't even be making endorsements for things like state legislature.

Republican in deep blue MI-14


[ Parent ]
Holistic view
In general, candidates should be looked holistically without litmus test.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
Abortion and state offices
State legislatures have power over abortion funding and regulation of the abortion industry.  State offices are often stepping stones to federal positions.  Pro-life groups are right to make endorsements in all races.

35, conservative R, lives in PA-14, grew up in TX

[ Parent ]
How about Paul Cellucci or Jane Swift?
I want Brown to run for governor in 2014. If he is effective in being a governor, maybe he could run for president in 2020.  

Jane Swift?
Her nickname when she left office was Jane "Not So" Swift...I've seen her mentioned on here a couple of times, but I don't think she could win election ever. She wouldn't have won the gubernatorial election in 2002. That's why she dropped out.  

[ Parent ]
Cellucci has ALS
There are basically only two scenarios - Brown for Senate, Baker for Governor or Brown for Governor, Weld for Senate. Each one is all but ready to roll depending on Brown's decision.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
I was hoping he would run in the last special
Brown was my 4th choice, after Cellucci, Schilling, and Baker (as a test run to see if he was viable for Governor later that year). But by that time he was likely in the early stages of ALS.

As Lurker said, Jane Swift had a disastrous half-term as Governor and I doubt we'll ever see her run for office again. Perhaps she could be our RNC Committeewoman someday, since the national party seems to like her.


[ Parent ]
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