Jim King drops out of MA-Sen, endorses Warren

HT nopolitician, who noticed MassLive’s report that Jim King has dropped out of the Democratic Senate primary race.  According to the story:

King is pledging his support for consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren in the Democratic Party’s bid to defeat Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, who won the seat in a 2010 special election following the death of longtime Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy.

King said that although he holds a “great deal of respect and admiration” for Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful Marisa DeFranco, Warren has the name recognition and party support to go head-to-head with Brown.

“Over the past few weeks, we had a number of meetings to look a the reasons we were running, especially in the context of so many polls showing that Brown was ahead of Elizabeth Warren,” King told The Republican. “We looked at our goals of defeating Scott Brown and rebuilding Sen. Ted Kennedy’s legacy, and decided that the best way to accomplish that at this point is to support Elizabeth Warren.”

And with all due respect to Marisa DeFranco, who (as I’ve said many times) I like and admire: the Democratic primary for Senate is over, and it has been for some time.  Time to get out.  You have a bright future in Mass. politics, if you play your cards right.  But Kenny Rogers was right: you got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em…

Recommended by ealmquist, fortleft.


14 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. Democratic primary

    I think that if Marissa De Franco is to respect the opinion you express about getting out of the way for St. Elizabeth, then there should be some real respect coming back. Marissa is running a spirited, low-budget (no PAC money, etc.), issues campaign and is clearly the most progressive candidate in the race. To truly respect her and the democratic process, St. Elizabeth should not be assiduously avoiding debates, thus showing disrespect for the democratic process. A candidate like Marissa should be heard, should have some influence over the party platform, and should be treated as a player. Barring that, I hope she refuses to play ball.

    • Um...

      if you want respect, you’ve got to give it. The “St. Elizabeth” shtick is not a good start.

    • First

      Spell your own candidate’s first name right, then start making up snarky names for her opponents – thanks!

    • It's Marisa.

      Marisa DeFranco for U.S. Senate has been a lifelong real American Democrat. I have been more of a consumer. DeFranco’s shoestring budget got a very small amount of money out of me. Nonetheless, that money should have fit right into our Senate candidate’s set definitions of campaign materials bulk-purchasing requirements. Anyway, I bought Kal Penn’s movie this morning, but it’s too late to raise funds and moral capital to attend the Barack Obama event under way right now. Thanks, Penn, DeFranco, and all Democrats.

      Al campeggio!

  2. um um

    Professor St. Elizabeth to you.

  3. David, that’s not intended to be a start. That’s where it’s at now.

  4. I don't believe Ms Warren herself was being dissed...

    David, I don’t think any references to “St Elizabeth” on anyone’s part were directed at Ms Warren per se. But many of us felt, and feel, that the uncritical adulation she received before anyone knew what her positions were on most anything were was unwarranted. “We have a TV star; that’s enough”–and a virtual canonization, if not apotheosis, followed. Frankly, I’m guessing that Ms Warren herself was surprised. I don’t think she herself has perpetuated any myths, but by the time she was the nominal front runner, I knew LOTS more about the positions of four of the other candidates. (And to be honest….)

    In any case, I’d treat these references as mildly critical of a process that took star power and the ability raise oodles of lucre as trumping sound, well-considered platforms, rather than an overt swipe at the candidate herself. I was ready to welcome Elizabeth Warren, and wish that she, Massie and DeFranco could have had a lengthy and serious public discussion of issues, since each is an acknowledged expert in three very different but equally significant areas. I think you would have found not only mutual respect, but each candidate learning from the others–and maybe incorporating some of what they learned. Pretty much all I hear from Ms Warren is in one area, and that ain’t good. You can call it “staying on message,” but as I’ve suggested elsewhere, it’s the stuff she isn’t talking about, and only hints at elsewhere, that gives me pause. More than pause. I’ve seen these “great progressive hopes” before. And recently.

    Should Ms Warren be nominated, I hope she’ll reconsider some of her positions. There are many of us who, obsessed as with we are with pie-in-the-sky fantasies about real action on climate change and ending the empire-as-we-know-it, feel we need a voice. I for one would prefer to think that the party would welcome the same–and not simply a voice crying in the wilderness, but being heard, as in debates (I’ll be honest with you–I find the Warren campaign’s refusal to engage truly dispiriting). Democrat-style debates don’t hurt candidates; they elevate, and they show the party in a positive light: compare Obama-Clinton to the horrorshow that were the GOP presidential debates!

    • If it wasn't a dig...

      … at her, then it certainly must be a dig at us and an alleged inability to weigh the pros and cons of candidates for ourselves.

  5. Disagree

    And with all due respect to Marisa DeFranco, who (as I’ve said many times) I like and admire: the Democratic primary for Senate is over, and it has been for some time. Time to get out.

    It is, “time to get out” when a candidate who has worked hard against enormous obstacles of funding, name recognition, establishment and incumbency privilege to, “get out” when s/he decides it’s “time.”

    Thank goodness for the many good and decent candidates that have stepped forward during the preliminary stages of the campaign to elect an outstanding individual to the Massachusetts US Senate seat! They are all courageous citizens.

    I am not convinced that either the (D) or (R) establishments or their candidates have led our nation, global and domestic interests all that well. I, for one, am skeptical of just about anything or anyone a political machine produces.

    Oh, and I sometimes get my elections confused, but I am pretty sure I have not voted in the Mass 2012 Democratic primary, so I am pretty sure it is not over!

  6. A question for heartland, michael horan,

    and tomas: do you think that Bob Massie, Alan Khazei, Tom Conroy, Setti Warren, and Jim King are fools? Have they missed something incredibly obvious about the race that shows their decisions to withdraw to be mistaken? I mean, such a thing has certainly happened before – Tim Pawlenty is no doubt kicking himself for withdrawing after the Ames straw poll.

    Or is there another possibility?

    • "if a fool would persist in his folly..."

      Stop the presses–maybe we’re having the wrong argument?

      First, to: mr-lynne, I really should have qualified my response–I know full well that many people did their due diligence and cheered Ms Warren right from the start. I’m sincerely sorry for overgeneralizing and for coming across as smug. But when I ask a great many of her supporters pretty basic questions about her positions, I DO find that the responses are often very inaccurate. In fact, I’ve been told I’m lying when I’ve corrected them by referencing her responses to various questionnaires and her own statements. That’s not Ms Warren’s fault, nor even the media’s; but I see the same thing happening that occurred during Obama’s rise–people saw what they wanted to see, heard what they wanted to hear, and invented a progressive where none existed (that said, I was pleased to see Ms Warren’s strong stance today on GBLT rights–I’m more than happy to give credit where it’s due, and if she continues to expand her range, she’ll be that much stronger a candidate–at least in the circles in which I move [hint: we don't get invited to a lotta breakfasts]).

      Yes, David, there’s another very obvious possibility. And yes, they saw the same writing on the wall very early on. (Hey, you left out Herb Robinson). I don’t consider their withdrawals a mistake–but neither would I have considered staying in and using the damn campaign as a means to talk about something other than the woes of the middle class a mistake, either. If that’s your sole issue, then I can well understand why you don’t want other voices–you’ve been urging Ms DeFranco to retire for some time, which also confuses me: if the writing’s that clear, than what possible harm could her remaining in possibly do? Why is she such a bugbear in your eyes?

      But I have my own crusades. I find her very weak on climate change–in fact, I was unable to find her ever using the phrase. Some of her big donors (Texas law firms whose biggest clients are you-know-who) worry me. I find her foreign policy statements, such as they are, to date, to be, well, worse than disappointing. I know it’s a minor point to many, but I freaking hate the fact that people are being locked up on marijuana charges, and I’m uninclined to share a glass of wine with anyone who insists that we continue to do so (admittedly, the invites to chardonnay-soaked garden parties haven’t been pouring in). And you already know how I feel about the way she sold out Occupy Boston at Stonehill. Again, a minor point that probably means little to most of you, and I’m sure you saw her sell-out as a brilliant strategic maneuver, but that’s one damn bitter for me to swallow. (What’s she going say come April 1?)

      But worst of all, I find that time-to-march-in-unison-mentality unsettling. I don’t do my own causes any favors that way, and I can think of no better way to advance them than using what bully pulpits are available during an election season, and I honestly don’t believe that does either the eventual nominee or the party any favors either. My own stance isn’t personal–I don’t love “Marisa” any more than I loathe “Elizabeth” (who strikes me as by and large quite sincere and well-intentioned, and I would not have to hold my nose to vote for her). But I’d like to see her corrected , and publicly, and I don’t see that as schismatic.

      Rather than constantly dismissing Warren’s rivals and for whatever reason insisting that everyone get on the same page now, I’d find–should probably say “would have found”– it a far more interesting exercise to compare the two candidates on as issue-by-issue basis. That hasn’t happened here, and it isn’t happening in debates.

      I’m not (completely) naive. I well understand the desire to recapture that seat. And how important that is. Heck, I’m going to attach four clothespins to my nose and vote for Obama come November myself. I can accept that you are actively supporting Elizabeth Warren in good faith; that you are taking into account the importance of moolah and earned media, along with your belief that she’ll be a sound Senator, and arriving at a sound conclusion. But I’d be almost as unhappy if you were encouraging a candidate to the right of Ms Warren to withdraw. Maybe it’s whatever Green still flows through my veins (not much after all the leeches I’ve applied), but I hate seeing candidates told to shut up and go home because they haven’t amassed enough money or been anointed by the powers that be.

  7. No reason for Marisa to go

    As a strong Warren supporter from the start, I disagree with you that she should leave the race. I agree that Warren will win the primary, that no longer seems in doubt. But by staying in the race Marisa DeFranco is doing the rest of us only good, no bad. I would totally understand if she decides to drop out, but if she feels up to the task of remaining a candidate, despite the costs which fall primarily on her, then by all means she should remain a candidate, and I’m happy she’s doing so.

  8. DeFranco may not get past convention.

    From everything I’ve heard Warren swept the caucuses. It’s too bad that the convention comes after the deadline to turn in signatures. If the convention came first I’d say, sure, go to convention and see if you get 15% and if you don’t find another race. However, I think DeFranco can do better at this point by not gambling on convention and seeking a state legislative seat as her hometown of Middleton is represented by Republicans who too often go unchallenged.

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