DeFranco signature-qualified: maybe this calls for a debate?

Well done of Team DeFranco to get 10,000 signatures! - promoted by david

Congratulations to Marisa DeFranco on having collected enough signatures to make a stand at the upcoming convention.

Now: how about one debate prior to the Convention? There are some very clear differences between Ms. DeFranco and Elizabeth Warren—notably on Iran, where Warren’s threat estimate “contradicts public statements by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta as well as reported intelligence findings of the U.S. and Israeli governments.” Differences best articulated and developed in one-on-one debates.

As The Globe notes, “DeFranco, with her outspoken liberal views, could also force Warren to move further left on the political spectrum and cede some of the moderate ground to Brown.” Well, um, sure. But last I checked, there was a sizeable constituency within the Democratic Party–and among independents to boot—also possessed of some “outspoken liberal views.” Many of whom could use some firing up, as opposed to watching the candidate du jour, if not wandering into right-field, leastways not chasing any balls into left in order to cadge some moderate votes. Rather than viewing the DeFranco insurgency as a threat to a win in November, this in fact provides Ms Warren with the chance to burnish her progressive credentials—which, outside of her own field of expertise, sometimes appear—and I’m only saying “appear”—to be in somewhat short supply.

It would also introduce some fresh thinking on some woefully ignored subjects into the campaign. I’m not going to pretend that the economy and that pesky unemployment rate isn’t front-and-center (and DeFranco, an unabashed promoter of a neo-New Deal, has as much to offer on that score as does her opponent)—but I think a great many Democrats would find a bit of chatter about single-payer and climate change downright inspiring. Discovering that Ms Warren feels as strongly as we do about these issues would be a boon to her should she win the nomination come September. Discovering that she in fact disagrees with Marisa DeFranco on the importance of these issues, and the means whereby best to address them, would also be educational.

And it would be fun. These are two whipsmart candidates who’d stick to real issues. I thought the Obama-Clinton debates in 2008 were terrific and genuinely good for the Party—especially in hindsight, after sitting through the recent series of GOP debates—and can’t help but feel that delegates to the convention would feel the same about a one-on-one between two of the best candidates the Commonwealth has to offer. I know that Ms Warren declined a personal invitation from Ms. DeFranco to debate some time ago; perhaps she and her camp felt that DeFranco hadn’t earned it. Fair enough. But she has now.


71 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. Thanks for the update

    As some know I am spending most of my time at Lahey. My husband suddenly became ill and the diagnosis is dire. But thanks to a smart phone and Facebook I can both update my friends and review updates like this. I think this development is positive and shows there remains se life in the political process

  2. I was one of the many that doubted her ability to get the sigs

    It wasn’t clear from the Globe whether that was 10,000 okayed by Galvin’s office, 10,000 back from the city & town clerk’s or what though.

    Bring her on, democracy is fabulous. She can wage a very effective scorched earth campaign on that $41K she’s raised.

  3. Triangulation

    A debate would allow E.W. to show she isn’t a straight-ticket liberal.

  4. Sure, I'd love a debate between two smaht people

    And both of them are. Two women vying for the Dem nod? Awesome.

    Two things: whoever wins (pretty obvious who it’ll be but hey it’s a democracy) becomes stronger in the general, and also, we get to see some GOOD debates before whoever wins has to face the empty suit that is Scott Brown.

    Debates against DiFranco will put Warren on her toes, such that her debates against woman-hating Brown will be cakewalk!

    • Oh

      and congrats to the DeFranco camp for pulling it off. See you at the convention!!

      Sorry for spelling her name wrong…am at work, trying to rush.

  5. DeFranco has earned it...

    Whether you are for or against her, agree or disagree with her, must admit getting 10,000 certified signatures when you don’t have piles of cash or an overpowering field operation is quite an accomplishment. DeFranco has earned the respect of fellow Democrats. Warren should extend her that respect by agreeing to debate before the convention.

    • Hmmmm

      While I’d welcome a debate (since I think it would benefit Warren), I’m not so sure DeFranco’s accomplishment here is all that important.

      First, “certified” signatures submitted to local election officials doesn’t necessarily mean they will all be approved by the Secretary of State. It remains to be seen whether she will actually have 10,000 valid signatures of actual registered voters as required by law.

      Second, DeFranco has demonstrably failed to generate all but the most token financial support to her campaign. She raised a pitiful $41,613 in the past year and had an inconsequential $8,000 in cash on-hand as of April 1st. Warren, in contrast, has raised $15.6 million and has close to $11 million ready to spend on the election. It’s not all about the money but it’s hard to “respect” a candidate for a national, statewide office that has shown no ability to raise the millions of dollars necessary to compete with the GOP in elections today.

      Finally, I’ve seen DeFranco and Warren debate. They have virtually no substantive differences on the issues. Moreover, DeFranco comes off as a petulant nuisance, self-centered and a tad arrogant. In an attempt to minimize her “viability” problem (she has no money, a handful of volunteers and a campaign staff with weak resumes), she peppers every answer with biographical notes and “I did this” statements that are off-putting. She’d be better off (a la Ron Paul) if she would that hers is a “raise some important issues” campaign and not a legitimate attempt to get the nomination.

      Given this, I don’t see the advantage to the state Democratic party or Warren as a candidate in debating DeFranco again until it’s at least sure that she will at least make the primary ballot (get the 10,000 signatures officially approved *and* get 15% of the vote at the June convention).

      • Respectfully disagree on the "substantive issues" element

        Many political personae rub each of us the wrong way. De gustibus non disputatorum. I’m sometimes REALLY put off by candidates’ whose positions I’m smitten with. If a personality is going turn off voters, well, that will emerge during a debate too–as it apparently did in your case. I was actually turned off during one of the debates by Ms Warren’s rather schoolmarmish chirping about how “the protesters have to obey the law!,” myself, and some of her earnestness sometimes seems a bit overwrought. But I suspect that both these candidates are pretty charming in person and are working at developing their political images. Hmm, yet another reason…

        I DO think that single payer, climate change, a well-considered position on immmigration, and various expressed thoughts on empire represent not merely “substantive differences” on issues but that DeFranco is in fact “raising some important issues” that both Warren and Brown, for reasons of theirown, are pointedly ignoring. Nor are they fringe or whackjob issues. Seriously. Were that not the case, I wouldn’t be bothering. I’m not a fan of insurgent campaigns for their own sake–waste of time, energy, and dollars. But I’ve been very unhappy with NO discussion whatsoever on what I consider to be the single greatest threat facing us today–and on which we can really take Brown and his oil-stained dollars to the woodshed.Which is not to suggest that DeFranco is a one-issue candidate; while her web site lacks the polish (to put it mildly, and god knows it needs an overhaul) of her rival’s, I believe you’ll find far more substantive responses to nearly every issue.

        I understand about the money, but if you’re going to abide by that principle, you basically tell any number of grassroots, right at the start, “don’t bother.” Not good for democracy, not for a party with any future. During my Green days, we had to fight to get ballot-qualified candidates into debates. You can suggest that they added nothing, or were underqualified for office–choose your epithet (I won’t argue it)–but there need to be certain recognizable baselines for legitimacy. I like to think that the mass of the electorate, increasingly disgusted by the fawning-for-dollars that has become the chief hallmark of the modern camapign, wouldn’t make that one. Getting on a ballot should earn any candidate the right to any inter-part debate; if DeFranco’s signatures hold up–and it sounds as though they’ve all been town-certified–I thik that she’s earned herself one debate. One that gives her a shot at the delegates.

        • No, I'm sorry

          “Many political personae rub each of us the wrong way.”

          I’m with theloquaciousliberal…every time I’ve seen her, I think “not ready for prime time.” She needs serious polish on tone in debate and speech making.

          I would love for her to turn some of the limited name rec this race gets her into a seat in the House or Senate. We desperately need her at the state house. But for Senator? Not on your life. Just not ready for that level of spot light. She makes me occasionally embarrassed for her…

          And I like her, I’ve met her, and I think she’s smart and liberal. Just I don’t want her brand of uncouth firebrand style up against Brown in the general. She will turn off the electorate and this race is far too important.

          That said, I’m all for debates and recognition that there is still a primary race. But don’t expect me to change my mind and support her at this point.

          • Bring on the debate

            I agree that DeFranco would probably not be the best for the general. I can’t imagine her playing well with Herald readers. I also like her, and would love to see her in the State House.

            I think a debate would be great. Frankly, I’ve been totally disappointed with the Warren campaign. Such a brilliant, passionate fighter has been lost to a lame, mainstream Democrat machine. I’d like to see an honest discussion between Warren and DeFranco to get a sense of the Senator Warren could be. Judging by her campaign, my enthusiasm for her being in the Senate has fallen off since she announced. We know she’d be great on consumer issues and Wall Street, but what about the other issues that rarely get national attention – the Drug War, perhaps?

            Of course she’d be much better than Brown, but is she going to be a Senator more like Franken, Sanders, or other Brown, or is she going to be more like Kerry? I don’t think debates only with Scott Brown will answer that question.

            • Not sure what you mean?

              “Democrat machine.” Um, ok…

              The big complaint I had (I had to disengage due to personal circumstances, unfortunately, so I haven’t kept up for the last 1.5 months in all honesty) was that they had way more people interested in volunteering than they had things for those people to do. Which makes it like just about every OTHER grassroots campaign I’ve ever worked for. I didn’t get any sense of insideriness at all – just a general chaos and disorganization that comes from getting too big, too fast. Which they could hardly help.

              If you actually put your boots on the ground with your regional people, I doubt you’d have the same opinion. And the people who are at the top of the campaign are all people I highly respect.

              • The image, but the ground game

                Sorry, I was not clear. “Machine” was the wrong word. It’s the not the ground game that I am disappointed with, it’s more the communications/public face of the campaign. What I see now does not seem to be the same Warren that was so inspiring when fighting for the CFPB.

                That’s what I mean when I said campaign. And I think it’s some of the insiders at the top of her campaign that are affecting that image.

                Maybe it has been a way to fight back against the Brown campaign’s attempt to label her as a radical, but I just see a typical Democrat now, not a progressive champion. It all just seems so safe and boring, and probably explains the hesitation to debate DeFranco. Play the clock in the primary, try to appeal to the middle, and don’t get caught saying anything controversial.

                Maybe that is a smart strategy (or maybe I am just misreading things), but it’s not exactly inspiring, at least not to me.

                • I dunno

                  I’ll be honest – in comparing the Patrick 06 campaign to this, it’s pretty much textbook. I don’t see it the same way as you here.

                  What Warren is doing now, and what Patrick did, was get out there and talk to people at events. It’s her best weapon. It’s invisible, too, since the media gets tired of covering every diner stop, every town hall full of interested activists and voters, every street she walks.

                  Because it’s invisible, it LOOKS like a lack of communication/ceding the news cycle to the silly season/not saying anything controversial.

                  But if you attended one of these events and have seen the energy in the room, the energy Warren exhibits, and the tone of those rallies/discussions, you’d have a different take all together.

                  What this time in the campaign is about is talking in person to as many motivated people as possible. It’s not glamorous, it’s not media strategy, but it’s the ground work for the summer and early fall when you need boots on the ground and you need to ID X-thousand of supporters in order to win the election – and then turn them out to vote.

                  She’s plenty inspiring to the many people she’s managed to speak to in person. Stop worrying. The media stuff happens later.

  6. I'd wait until after the convention.

    Regular voters will start paying attention in late summer. Focus now needs to be in wooing delegates, and frankly I’m still skeptical about DeFranco’s ability to get 15%.

    • So am I

      wicked skeptical. And I’m not going to vote for her simply because she’s an underdog. I don’t think she’s really earned it. Not really. If the convention blocks her off the ballot, so be it.

  7. Congrats

    I respect DeFranco for doing the hard work, especially at a time when the MA-Sen race wasn’t a top-tier race. She kept slugging away and deserves a chance for her voice to be heard.

    sabutai   @   Thu 3 May 8:43 PM
  8. Congrats Marisa and Team!

    So happy to hear this. Thanks so much for working so hard and never giving up! We need more like you in the Democratic Party.

  9. Congratulations DeFranco and Team - maybe there is hope for grass roots democracy and someone who is not in the "dialing for dollars" game

    Frankly, the “dialing for dollars” game, and the professional advocacy as a route to the top with no time in the trenches at all leaves me cold. I am not interested in cold polish, or the “kiss” of the self-satisfied top 10%. I am impressed by tenacity, accessibility, compassion, and experience on the ground fighting against great odds. The professional who climbs the ladder into the elite on one issue, or an ethnic connection doesn’t excite me. And the campaign run to date by either Brown or Warren leaves me cold. As between Brown and Warren I will vote for Warren because I see brown as no better than a quisling for the Kochs and other plutocratic types whom I belive have neofascist tendencies. As between Warren and DeFranco, as of today for me it is DeFranco because I know who she is, I know what she does, and she has shown me personal fire and personal commitment that requires no coddling.

  10. She's a Joke

    I saw her at the Roosevelt Awards. She was just standing around, eating food. She didn’t shake hands and meet people. She didn’t have any supporters near her. Nobody seemed to recognize her. She was alone.

    And, how did she get those signatures? She does not have an army of volunteers. Did the Mass GOP help her get signatures in order to mess up Elizabeth Warren’s campaign?

    • Quality, not quantity

      And, how did she get those signatures? She does not have an army of volunteers. Did the Mass GOP help her get signatures in order to mess up Elizabeth Warren’s campaign?

      Marisa DeFranco did not have “an army of volunteers”, but those folk she had worked their hearts off.

    • Any pics from that dinner?

      “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”
      – Mahatma Ghandi

      • Hm

        “But the fact that some geniuses were laughed at does not imply that all who are laughed at are geniuses. They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright Brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown.” – Carl Sagan

        I’m not saying DeFranco is Bozo the Clown. But she’s not Ghandi, either. She did the hard work of running an unlikely campaign at an unlikely time, and earned my respect for that. However, if she’s going to make up stuff (Warren’s not a progressive? Really?) in order to try to get some traction, that respect is going to wear away.

        She can leave the race now a winner in her own way by her choosing, or leave it a loser by the voters’ choosing.

        sabutai   @   Sat 5 May 1:32 PM
        • Not suggesting that she's Ghandi

          but the sequence of ignoring, than calling her “a joke” did fit the behavior of some of her detractors.
          As to Warren’s progressive credentials, I guess that depends on your definition. She’s obviously more progressive than any Republican.
          Rather than playing word games over what is/is not progressive, I hope that the public discussion can shift to the two candidates’ policy proposals and visions for the country, which have important differences. If DeFranco is able to stay in the race, we all will benefit from the discussion.

          • I'm not playing word games

            DeFranco is. If she’s going to keep announcing that she “is the progressive candidate”, it’s pretty clear what her favorite attack on Warren has become.

            sabutai   @   Sun 6 May 2:47 PM
    • Wow.

      Your comment is totally outrageous.

      I was at Marisa’s side for the entire evening while she greeted people she knew, was introduced to others she didn’t, spoke with many supporters and was enthusiastically congratulated over and over again. We were among the last to leave the room, because Marisa was engaged in discussions about policy and her positions. Shall I give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you were watching the wrong person? Your tone suggests otherwise. Oh, by the way, neither of us ate a thing all evening.

      The signatures were collected by her very dedicated group of volunteers. Sometimes small armies wage powerful campaigns. We put hundreds of miles on our cars going to caucuses all over the state, some with only a handful of people who were amazed the campaign cared enough about them to show up and meet them–those visits were obviously not just about the 3 or 4 signatures we collected. We stood in front of grocery stores and post offices and had conversations with people who wanted to know about her and her positions. We talked to thousands of people who are unenrolled who were happy to hear about a candidate whose volunteers are inspired to go out hours on end, day after day, to spread the word about her candidacy and gather support for her to be on the ballot.

      The ten thousand + people who signed her papers believe she has a right to be on the ballot and be heard. They want to hear what she believes. They want to hear how her ideas differ from other candidates. They want to decide with their votes who will represent them. They think they have that right. I think they do to.

  11. Know when to leave

    Melissa DeFranco, who I like very much personally, has made one of the biggest mistakes a person running for public office can make — she has failed to recognize when to leave a race. Stubbornly hanging on after it is clear that she has no ability to beat either Warren or Brown says to me loudly and clearly that she does not yet have the maturity necessary to be a serious state-wide candidate. She is not only hurting her future political career, she is inadvertently helping Scott Brown and jeopardizing our chances to gain another liberal champion in the Senate.

  12. Marisa, not Melissa

    Er, that’s Marisa. Sorry about that.

  13. Props...

    Amazing that DeFranco did what Grace Ross could not.

    I do think that DeFranco has made a personal miscalculation. If she ever really wanted to be elected to statewide office, I fear that she has tarnished herself here, simply because a statewide campaign for US Senate build on a shoestring will sadly make her a mockery. I hear she’s nice, smart, and progressive. When I hear people who should be on her side talk about her, they have become somewhere between dismissive and downright negative. That’s a shame, but it appears to be a reality.

    That said, I really hope if she wants to run that she gets her 15%, she pushes progressive issues without feeding the GOP talking points by going negative on Warren, and she runs hard enough that Warren is forced to really implement a real grassroots effort for September. There are definite benefits for the Democratic Party here.

    • Paul Wellstone

      ran his first US Senate campaign on a shoestring. Being tenacious and having a clear message should not be a liability.

      DeFranco is too smart to feed the GOP talking points. What are they going to do, attack Warren for not being stronger on climate change, single payer health care, bold government programs to create jobs, or civil liberties? I look forward to serious and spirited debate about these issues.

      • Sorry.

        DeFranco is NO Wellstone.

        Not by even a modicum of imagination.

        I like her but let’s not get crazy. She is not ready for prime time. Not sure she ever will be. She has GOT to get less strident in tone, at a minimum.

  14. Marisa is who she is - not a construct, not a PR image

    And willing to take on lions almost with her bare hands. Maybe she has tarnished herself in the view of those who like tame candidates that follow scripts. That isn’t what keeps my interest – no – and playing to the top 10% doesn’t excite me, either. Can she win? Danged if I know. But she did what Grace Ross could not. Best not to underestimate how hard her volunteers were and are willing to work for her. There are some folks so glad not to deal with condescension, dialing for dollars, and the need to hold their noses that she has passionate supporters. I am not going to do canvassing or phone calls for anyone – and just now I am spending 10 hour days at Lahey Clinic – but sneering, talking down, and doing some of the put downs in this thread is not the way to make friends and positively influence readers. It is juvenile, frankly.

    • Are you really

      implying Warren is?

      Wow, not worthy of you. Love you hon, but…man do I disagree.

    • Also

      “put downs in this thread”

      My comments are genuine and heartfelt and I’ve been saying them since her flinch-inducing first debate and speeches I heard, when I noticed the problems in question.

      I don’t doubt her motives or her progressivism. Nor do I think she needs some sort of makeover. What she needs is to not sound like she’s angry all the time.

      • I think Marisa is just fine as she is

        She doesn’t sound like she is angry all the time. She doesn’t sound strident and she is not uncouth. Who do you think you are? The decider of proper personality, and the definer of it as well? Let me tell you, I would rather hang around 100 Marisa DeFrancos and 100 Elizabeth Warrens than hang around one person who points fingers at someone for not fitting into the “normal” mold as defined by the one pointing the finger.

        • Ignore me at your own peril

          I am telling you how she comes across. If you want to get defensive about it, you sort of are proving my point.

          But she will not get elected the way she comes across right now. It’s not just me saying that. And I am being honest. I LIKE a good debate between great Dems. I am always comparing Dem primaries to the MA-05 special election primary (Eldridge, Donoghue, Tsongas et al) when it was such a pleasure to see them debate completely issues-oriented and not get personal. I came away from that race wishing all Dem primaries could be like that. (Then we had the state Senate race with Donoghue vs. Doherty, which was dirty – on his part – and nasty, and I was very unhappy with it. I dislike the politics of personal destruction even when perpetrated by our side against the Republicans. Worse when it’s a Dem doing it.)

          All I see from DeFranco supporters and from her herself is whining and complaining about “coronations” and “insiders” and “establishment Dems” and “Washington party apparatchiks.” Take a look at this thread. Read it not as a defensive supporter, but objectively. See how you come across as a group.

          “Who do you think you are?”

          A VOTER and an activist who has to make a decision for myself. Or am I not allowed??

          • That's how she's coming across in your opinion.

            I’m not sure what you mean by proving your point unless what you mean is if we agree with you then we are OK, but if we don’t then we are defensive and proving your point, either way you win I guess, right? LOL. I dislike the politics of personal destruction as well, and have done my very best to support Marisa DeFranco without going negative toward Elizabeth Warren. Either way, we have to beat Scott Brown…I know this. Speaking of how a group is portraying themselves, if you choose to put everyone in a group, you should take a hard look at the Warren camp as well and see how defensive you look.

        • Let me put it this way

          I like watching Bill Maher. I enjoy Dems with fight in them. I applauded the kitchen table rejoinder from Barney Frank.

          DeFranco makes me cringe when she talks.

          Again, ignore me at your own peril…

          But as it stands, I do not want her to represent me.

          • From your comments in this thread

            it seems that personality is a more important factor to you than policies. If this is not true, I wish you would say more about the latter.

            • Regrettably, personality can..

              … be an election-killer. This fact, it should be understood, in now way says that personality is ‘more important to Lynne’.

    • Deep breaths Deb

      The topic here is whether we support a public debate between two tough, smart, competent women running for a very important office, not accusing supporters of Elizabeth of being condescending or sneering and talking down Marisa.

      Marisa came to our ward and I was very impressed with her scope of knowledge about our government including a pretty smart analysis or our foreign policy and if that was not enough I truly admire her direct experience in advocating for the poor, the elderly the disabled and especially to the many newcomers to our country.

      She would do a great job in a public debate I think. Of course so would Elizabeth, and she should see this as an opportunity to demonstrate her amazing capacity to analyze complicated economic policy and most important to me, not only organize a public education campaign to support a positive policy change, but win it!

      I’m glad she didn’t get that job — she’s going to be much more effective working with all of on the outside monitoring the implementation of the new law and promoting the inevitable corrective changes. More fun too.

  15. I'm not sure to whom you're referring...


    I’m not big on making accusations or questioning motives without the evidence to back up such courses of action, which is why I’ll just plainly put the question to you: who are you referring to with the comments about candidates who follow scripts, who cater to the top 10%, condescension, dialing for dollars and the need to hold one’s nose?

    Unless you invented a time machine that caused you to go back in time to 2002 Indiana, and your foregoing comments were about about Evan Bayh, I’m having a hard time relating your comments to anything that is real or concrete in this time or place. Please explain.

  16. Marisa was in this from the beginning...

    she didn’t have to be dragged in by the National or the State party. Although I truly believe that Elizabeth Warren will win a primary due to her fundraising and her ordination by the Powers-That-Be, I also believe that if you have the passion (Marisa does) and the progressive ideas (Marisa REALLY does) you have the right–no, the duty–to run. I am insulted that somehow it is assumed that I will support who the Party thinks I should support–not who I would truly love to see run against Scotty Brown.

    Yes, Marisa does not shy away from being a true liberal Democrat. And personally, I am so sick of dems pitching to the middle instead of sticking to their guns, I could just spit.

    That being said, I hope Marisa gets her 15% at convention. The Warren Campaign could use the practice against a formidable opponent. A few debates would separate the Dems from the repugs.

    • Ordination by the PTB?

      Please – was it the PTB that propelled thousands of rank and file Dems to her early campaign rallies? Or was it rank and file Dems, excited by a candidate who can beat Scott Brown? There was no ordination, you and Marisa should stop using that trope, it doesn’t fly.

      • I have met many people

        who never heard of DeFranco but have heard of “what’s her name” (their words) in the mainstream media. You would have to agree that the mainstream media devotes overwhelmingly more coverage to Warren than DeFranco. Beginning in September, even before Warren declared her intention to run, MoveOn, Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and Credo Mobile created a buzz for the Warren campaign without mentioning that there were other progressive candidates vying for the seat. Surely this helped direct volunteers to Warren. Even if you like the result this time around, you might ask how much influence (as opposed to assistance) you would like the leadership of national-level organizations to have over Massachusetts politics.

        • A lot?

          I trust MoveOn and Progressive Change Campaign Committee more than I trust the average Democratic Town & City Committee. If national orgs want to do the research as to who would make the best and most effective candidate for me, I won’t be unhappy.

          I’d only be unhappy if there were specific sectional interests to worry about. Are there? Do California progressives have different priorities or goals from progressives in New England? I doubt it.

  17. Hat's off for the stubbornness

    I don’t think DeFranco will get 15% at the convention. I also think that Warren is smart to simply ignore DeFranco, focusing solely on Brown.

    I hope that DeFranco keeps her head up, stays positive, and eventually exits the race with dignity, as I do want DeFranco to move up the elected office ladder in this state.

    • This pretty much...

      … sums my my thoughts as well. I like her. I don’t think she’s the best weapon we have to wield in this fight.

  18. Coronation...

    Of course many at the national party pushed Warren from the beginning. There was early pressure for the other Dems to get out. Why? After assuming that Brown was nearly unbeatable, a candidate joined the race in September, and the very first poll had her running even with Brown, despite the fact that more than 50% of voters didn’t even have an opinion of her (favorable/unfavorable) yet.

    She moved the numbers in a way nobody else had, before she’d announced her first fundraising take, her first position on an issue, held her first canvass, run her first ad, or distributed her first piece of literature. You have to at least give her credit for capturing voters’ imaginations based on her previous accomplishments on issues that matter . She’s not a “name” like Kennedy or Clinton, she’s not a war hero like a John Kerry, and she’s not a multi-millionairre trying to buy her way in.

    I appreciate Marisa’s passionate supporters. I hope she gets her 15% because she’s a benefit to the race, unless decides to tie to the Brown’s “elitism” message. Nobody should question her motives or energy, or those of her supporters. I’m impressed.

    Nonetheless, as much as Warren hasn’t taken as many public positions on some issues as we’d like, it’s hard not to see her as being a national leader on one of the most important progressive causes of this election: income inequality.

    It’s fair to not like her new-found celebrity status, her need to get “drafted”, and the way her campaign has been taken over by the consultants and DC insiders. It’s also truly frustrating to see how badly the campaign has been dealing with this week’s silliness.

    But it’s awfully hard for me to honestly believe that Warren won’t be the kind of Ted Kennedy progressive fighter that this state and this country so desperately needs in DC. And it’s near impossible to imagine that any other Democrat in the state other than maybe the Governor would have a legitimate shot at taking out Scott Brown in this cycle.

    • Nailed it

      Exactly. Everyone from insiders to outsiders in the party want to oust Brown. Why WOULDN’T anyone including “party elders” want her to run?!

      Also, as passionate as DeFranco’s (fairly few) supporters are here on BMG, I do not appreciate their tone, which is really defensive. That to me speaks to the person at the head of the campaign – DeFranco – and that is reinforced by what I see of her tone when she is on the stump or at a debate.

      Not useful for anyone, least of all DeFranco. Her supporters turn me off so fast – notwithstanding my support of Warren…if I had no dog in this race, I’d feel the same way.

      • And...

        I wish DeFranco and her supporters would take me at my word and look long and hard at their words and tone and attitude.

        I really, truly am more interested in giving them advice on being more effective and giving my honest opinion on the matter, not trying to tear them down.

        • If you had any sense of maturity you would realize

          the amazing candidate that we have in Marisa DeFranco and encourage her to remain as a candidate in Democratic party. It is incredibly costly — financially, emotionally, and physically — to put yourself out there to run for office. If she doesn’t win this seat, we want her to remain encouraged to run in the future. I think you’re the one with tone problem, and I think you are offering some really bad advice.

          • a sense of maturity tells me...

            If you had any sense of maturity you would realize

            the amazing candidate that we have in Marisa DeFranco

            … that being amazing isn’t enough. And, frankly, you’re amazement at our unwillingness to genuflect without question is infantile.

            If she doesn’t win this seat, we want her to remain encouraged to run in the future.

            Meh. I’d be more encouraged if you ran, next time… Not, I assure you, because I think you are amazing (I don’t) but because I think you would learn something about adulation.

          • Really?

            She gives an honest assessment on a person she likes but doesn’t prefer. She assesses her supporters of coming across as strident. You’re answer is to call her immature? Really?

      • Lynne, you know me and how active I am

        I’m the Elections Committee co-chair for Milford’s Democratic Town Committee – I’m on the executive board of the Greater Blackstone Valley Dems – I have my own local access cable TV show, on the air in 14 area towns – I’m regularly elected as a state convention delegate – and I’ve written my own campaign organizing software, just to name a few of the things I do. I have encountered Marisa DeFranco several times at various events over the past few months, given her my contact info and asked that she get in touch. She has not done so, and every time I see her she always has a new excuse. I agree with what you say about the head of the campaign – she’s certainly been a disappointment to me.

        • That certainly

          would disappoint me…

          And as a delegate to the convention, to my recollection (granted, my April really sucked), I have not gotten one phone call about it from their camp.

          Of course, I might easily be labeled in whatever database as solid Warren given my public support, but still. I doubt my public, first name name has been much associated with my full name listed in the delegates from Lowell. (This is often the case. I get a phone call…mention I am the one behind LiL…and get a “oh, OK, I heard of/read that blog!”)

          • with Lynne on the "tone" issues

            The DeFrancophiles on this board are given to entirely too much high-handed sanctimony. Reading the comments of DeFranco supporters on BMG makes me want to take the easy way out by watching reruns of Joe Lieberman on Meet the Press.

            This conspiratorial piffle about “coronations” and “party elders” and “dialing for dollars” is a paranoid fantasy. The idea that Elizabeth Warren is some kind of Landreiu/McCaskill lab experiment stitched together by political consultants and forced upon the Commonwealth is just so much synthetic piety.

            Elizabeth is a folk hero and I’ve never been prouder or more excited to be involved in a political campaign than I am now, and there are tens of thousands of people just like me across Massachusetts. There are millions of people across the country who would cut their legs off to have the extraordinarily good fortune that we have in Massachusetts…and yet…and yet…and yet, we have a group of sour patch kids trying to dampen the electricity.

            No way, brothers and sisters. I’m not letting meh become the enemy of awesome.

            • If you notice, they are attacks on the campaign and strategy

              not on Elizabeth Warren. The attacks on Marisa DeFranco are personal attacks and have no place in a reasonable discussion.

              • DeFranco, the person, is running

                Unfortunately tone very much matters in a candidate.

              • Strains credulity.

                Surely you’re not saying that ‘the way a candidate comes across’ is somehow irrelevant to the question of supporting her, are you? Are you saying that Lynne’s assessment of her is a ‘personal attack’? What if you assessed that a candidate or supporters had a stridency problem? Would you mentioning it constitute a ‘personal attack’?

                You can certainly hold her advise as being of little value, but that’s quite different than saying she offered it maliciously.

              • DeFranco is the Problem

                I have no beef with DeFranco on the issues. She’s better (more left) on the issues than Warren in several ways. The problem is the messenger. And her debating style. And her inability to fund raise. And she’s too inexperienced to be running for statewide federal office.

                I’ll give just one example from the debate I heard. The candidates were asked what the thought about the Buffet Rule. Warren said yes and went right in to her usual “it’s about our values” stump speech on taxes and income inequality. Fine. Safe. DeFranco eventually got around to supporting the rule but started and spent most of her three minutes with a diatribe about how we shouldn’t be naming legislation after rich people like Buffet. Pandering nonsense.

                • The most ridiculous thing about this is

                  that I could, but will not, review the personality of Elizabeth Warren, as well, scan her statements, and share examples of how i think she is imperfect this way and answered that question wrong. Both of these candidates are who they are. Certainly not perfect, but wonderful and real in their own right. What may be offensive to you and others would not even be noticed by another. What I am finding incredibly offensive is the bullying of Marisa DeFranco. She is a fine person, with a personality that is suitable for public office. To offer anything other than that is sexist and bullying. If you want to critique her campaign or her stance on the issues, then by all means do it. But back off on the critique of her genuine individuality. DeFranco is not the problem, you and every other bully on this site are.

                • By the way, we all can be team and work together to unite our

                  party, despite the fact that we support different Democrats, or we can all pull a Special Election and be so harsh on each others preferred candidate that we hate each other by September. I want to be able to enthusiastically support Elizabeth Warren should she win in September. I won’t be able to if the people here behave so badly that I can’t even stand to think about it. If you don’t have anything nice to say about a person’s physical or personality traits, it’s often better to just keep your mouth shut.

                  • I will enthusiastically support the Democratic nominee

                    Do we all understand that the GOP that Scott Brown carries the banner for banned Planned Parenthood funding in Arizona? Do we understand that the attempted a similar initiative in New Hampshire? Scott Brown co-sponsored the now-infamous Blunt Amendment that was another salvo in the same war on women. Scott Brown is participating in the GOP war on women. He is similarly participating in the GOP class war.

                    Can we please try to keep our well-deserved anger, hostility and pain focused on its source: the horrific things that the 1%, the GOP, and Scott Brown have done and are doing to us.

                    Scott Brown is the rightful target — not Elizabeth Warren, not Marisa DeFranco, not liveandletlive, not theloquaciousliberal, not me.

                    I most enthusiastically embrace the call for all of us to “team and work together to unite our party”.

        • I find this really hard to believe.

          She is pretty accessible. This just does not compare at all with the experience I’ve had with her and her campaign.

          • I didn't say she wasn't accessible

            I said she failed to follow up on repeated attempts by me to get some face time. I met her in person several times, I called her and left voicemail, I emailed her and sent her messages on Facebook. No follow up, none. I was elected to be a delegate to the state convention in February – the Warren camp reached out to me almost immediately, but the DeFranco campaign? Crickets…

            • I remember when looking...

              … at how Patrick rose from obscurity he identified a workable strategy for visibility. The strategic value of hooking up with independent media was well exemplified by Patrick and I would have hoped other ‘underdog’ candidates might have taken notes. Hopefully your experience is the exception and not the rule.

              Patrick, recognized that as a relative unknown and even ‘outsider’ the media wasn’t going to give him play. Knowing he needed to get the word out in order to get his nomination strategy in place, he made a point of reaching out to the media that would cover him – the bloggers and other independent media. By utilizing a visibility among bloggers he was able to attract and identify the workers he needed in order to execute his strategy at the conventions while simultaneously creating a buzz among ‘opinion leaders’ within the active wing of the party. Strategically it may have been his only move, but it runs contrary to established political wisdom and I give him much credit for ‘engineering’ the solution of ‘how to get from here to there’ and sticking to the plan with its many steps.

  19. Who the heck is Marisa DeFranco?


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