State Senator Scott Brown has led the fight in Massachusetts against wasteful government spending and higher taxes. He is a free-market advocate who believes our strength as a nation flows from its people. He believes in a culture of family, patriotism and freedom. At his September 12 announcement of candidacy for the U.S. Senate, Senator Brown articulated a core set of beliefs that guide his thinking. * Government is too big and that the federal stimulus bill made government bigger instead of creating jobs * Taxes are too high and are going higher if Congress continues with its out-of-control spending * The historic amount of debt we are passing on to our children and grandchildren is immoral * Power concentrated in the hands of one political party, as it is here in Massachusetts, leads to bad government and poor decisions * A strong military and vigorous homeland defense will protect our interests and security around the world and at home * All Americans deserve health care, but we shouldn't have to create a new government insurance program to provide it - Caption Credit: brownforussenate.com / Image Credit: SENATUS
Obama to three-peat in defeat - Trip to Massachusetts, Sunday
Barack Obama places his prestige and programs to make America into a vision of all Government ... all the time, on the line through an impulsive last minute campaign trip to Massachusetts. Obama goes to the overwhelingly Democrat state (Massachusetts has over 1 million more registered Democrats than any other political party) on Sunday to stump for Democratic nominee Martha Coakley, who is in a dead heat with Republican candidate Scott Brown for (the former) "Ted Kennedy's Senate seat".
President Obama's charm offensive didn't work in New Jersey or Virginia, where Republicans won crucial gubernatorial races in November. Will it work in Massachusetts? In fact, the stakes are even higher for the president than they were in last year's gubernatorial races, as he seeks to avoid losing a critical 60th vote in the Senate for his signature health care overhaul that is nearing the finish line in Congress.
If Brown wins Tuesday, Republicans pick up their 41st vote, which would be enough to sustain a filibuster and possibly kill the reform bill.
The most recent poll has Brown leading by 4 percentage points, and the Republican state senator reportedly is raising money at a rate of $1 million a day. Meanwhile, Coakley's campaign is under fire for the way she's run her campaign, going from front-runner to barely competitive after taking it easy following her primary victory in December.
The president's decision to hit the campaign trail again is a stunning reversal from what the White House had been saying in recent days and reflects the deep concerns the Democrat political party hold over their chances Tuesday.
Former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, center, campaigns with Massachusetts State Senator Scott Brown as he greets Susan Fantasia in Boston's North End on Friday. Image Credit: Winslow Townson
This excerpted and edited from The Christian Science Monitor -
Massachusetts senate race hinges on independent vote
Massachusetts is one of the most Democratic states in the country. But moderate Republicans have done well there too over the years, and independent voters are likely to make the difference in the special US Senate race.
By Tracey D. Samuelson Correspondent / January 16, 2010
Massachusetts has long been regarded as a liberal stronghold, but the special election to replace Sen. Edward Kennedy in the US Senate is showing Massachusetts has a more conservative streak as well.
Brown’s success may have to do with his ability to appeal to independent voters in the Bay State – 51 percent of voters here are unenrolled.
True, Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-to-1, and the state can be counted on to elect Democratic presidential candidates by consistently wide margins – President Obama won here with a 26-point margin in 2008, Sen. John Kerry by 25 points in 2004.
It’s results like these that routinely place Massachusetts as one of the top states for Democrats in rankings of party affiliation. Last year, a Gallup survey named Massachusetts the third-most Democratic state, behind only Washington D.C. and Rhode Island.
But Massachusetts voters also gave Republicans the key to the governors’ office for 16 straight years, from 1990 to 2006.
For Coakley and Brown, it’s the state’s independents who will likely determine the outcome of the race.
“The majority of registered voters now are independents,” says David Paleologos, director of the Political Research Center at Suffolk University in Boston, which conducted Thursday’s poll. “Despite the fact that they are people who say … they don’t want to be tied to one party, independents have emerged as the political party in Massachusetts now. It’s really about the independent voter.”
Most independents favor Brown
Suffolk’s poll shows 65 percent of voters who identify themselves as independent favor Brown.
“I am running in the name of all independent-thinking citizens, whether they are Democrats, Republicans, or unenrolled, to take on one-party rule,” Brown wrote in a Boston Globe op-ed column published Friday.
His focus on homeland security, in particular, is “a perfect issue to lead with” to attract independent voters, says Stewart.
In contrast, Coakley has stuck close to her Democratic base, focusing on abortion rights, healthcare reform, and, more recently, the economy.
In fact, Coakley’s support of the healthcare reform bill might hurt her with independents, 56 percent of whom oppose the proposed national legislation.
Still, while independents may prefer Brown, they are also historically much less likely to turn out to vote.
“They’re half the electorate, but they’re not half the voting power,” says Stewart. “The great middle is tending toward Brown, so then the question is who turns out.”
Before deciding to visit the state this weekend, the president did come to Coakley's aid by cutting an online video for her, calling on supporters to put on their "walking shoes" and bring out people to vote.
"In Washington, I'm fighting to curb the abuses of a health insurance industry (through granting excemptions to Unions on paying a proposed 40% tax on "Cadillac" or premium health care insurance plans and bribing Senators through Stimulus tax monies) that routinely denies care," Obama said. "I'm fighting for financial reforms to stop Wall Street from playing havoc with our economy (while giving unlimited funding to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac so that they can continue to operate outside of proper banking practices). I'm fighting to create a new, clean energy economy (with a proposed Cap & Trade law that would make it very costly to exhale CO2 - "a tax on breathing" - and practically make the Coal industry non-existent through punitive taxation).
"And it's clear now that the outcome of these and other fights will probably rest on one vote in the United States Senate."
Thank God! ... and Godspeed to Scott Brown on becoming a US Senator and slowing down this edition of Carter's Second Term.