Hey Ben Downing, Go For It!

You know, I like Ed Markey. But I also like primaries, and I don't really like the fact that within hours of Markey's announcement, both Kerry and the DSCC had wrapped their arms around him. So I'm with Ernie: come on in Ben, the water's fine. - promoted by david

Why not? I’d vote for you. (But that’s me. Mr. Vegas)

Make fast Eddie deal with you.

Even if Capuano jumps in, go for it.

I’m sure you’re a likable kid. You won’t embarrass yourself when standing next to Markey or Capuano.

Get your name out there, build up some credibility with the public and in two years run for lt. governor or something.

Then again, you could win this.

Please Ben, make them do some work for this thing. People don’t like being told whom to vote for.

Screw the establishment! Screw The Man!

Run a campaign like Markey did in his first congressional win. Attack the establishment and people like Markey who are part of it and demand that others fall in line.

The primary is a microcosm of that. The party and entrenched politicians demanding the proletariat vote their approved candidate. One that won’t make waves. Won’t rock the boat.

A small field and you will get exposure Ben.

Que up Michael Jackson’s Ben

[Your humble editor submits the following, per EB3's request:]


61 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. We're all old.

    We’re all old, but do you have to rub it in with the soundtrack by our late Michael Jackson? What if Downing proves to be a Benoni? Action thrills me. The enacting of bills passed by Democrat Senators keeps me volunteering. Primaries are not our primary objective. When I gave money to a primary candidate, I had to drive to another town to find others who gave in, too, to that candidate. I still am not clear on whether any of my [FraminghamNeighbors] gave money like what I gave to that Democrat primary candidate. The truth is, I gave to almost any Democrat who primaried with the vision of beating our Senator Scott Brown. I gave no money to Alan Khazei, but I did blog in a good word for him, which led another to think that I was in his campaign. I would like to think that I am donating less money for this election cycle. Even MegaBeth Elizabeth Warren for MA still might be in campaign debt. Our winning campaign still asks us for money. Anyway, we Ocean’s Eleven met for Edward J. Markey for United States Senate this morning. I had to scramble in, scared about how the fiscal cliff might shatter MassHealthMedicaid. A Democratic State Committee member explained that the nether-haus of congress might act after and maybe if only spiker boehner keeps his spikership of Our House. Event-hopping itself might not anymore secure the fighting status of a United States Senate candidate. A US Senate candidate has to establish a sweepingly clear presence of the foremost purposes of their political hard work. Parochial TV appearances might not weigh in as much as would a convincing starring in Bill Moyers’ show.

    • A contest for a the sake if contest is a pretty lame reason to back someone. He merely earned your vote because his new? Isn’t an incumbent state senator part of the beacon hill establishment and thus an insider and “the man”. Markey has over three decades of great service to his country and the Comminwealth and could be a workhorse for this state day one. We already have a greenhorn outside the box Senator and her name is Liz Warren. She will be so much more effective with a seasoned legislator by her side. Nobody is talking about that though. More fun to jump to the freshest face or make hay over a ten year old vote. Anyway I doubt you know anything about Downing EB3 and your just saying this to be a contrarian and garner attention. Didn’t you say Menino was going to quit or be a woman? That EW or BO were toast? Your starting to have a Dick Morris batting average in political prognostication.

    • Which State Comm. member was hosting the meeting?

      You say you attended a Markey for Senate mtg this morning…what State Comm. member was hosting it? How many showed up? Doesn’t Markey represent Framingham? Has Markey ever been to Framingham in a no
      n-election year?

      • Arlington's in the district

        I can count on seeing Ed Markey at least a couple of times during the year, be it election year or non-election year. He’s been visible, plus he has a competent and effective staff.

        Ever since we were moved into Markey’s district, I feel his representation is effective and consistent with my values. From my days walking around Capitol Hill, I also know that the Massachusetts delegation relies on the expertise of each other – Markey has always lead on the environment, Tierney has lead on education, Barney on banking.

        My heart’s with Capuano, but I also think Markey would be an excellent senator and would be proud to support him in this senate race.

        As for Senator Downing. He owns Berkshire County, but that isn’t even a single senate district. I would rather have Middlesex County in my back pocket. It also doesn’t help that someone like me had to Google the guy to figure out who he is.

  2. Capuano. Now.

    Nothing else to say.

  3. Ben is getting married today.

    I doubt he’s reading this. :)

  4. EW Vols still united against Scoot Brown, a primary divides them....

    I am all for primaries, but not in a special election with an interim appointee who can’t run, and a former Senator waiting for the Dems to shoot themselves again.

    Also, I gave a ton of money to EW and I can’t afford to go through another expensive race. And Ed Markey has 3 million reasons in the bank why he sould be the candidate.

    I worked my tail off for EW because she could beat Scott Brown. Keeping Scott Brown out of the Senate is our goal, not bringing newcomers out to make a name for themselves by running this time.

    Let Ben run for Governor, or the rest of them in a traditional election cycle. If we don’t have a primary and can have an election quick, the EW vols are still united against Scott Brown and a primary would divide them.

    • Thank You Anne!

      Scott Borwn has many Wall Street friends with deep pockets. He will be able to raise money quickly. This special election could cost each candidate at least $20 million. I just don’t see how Ben can raise that amount of money in a short time period.

      Ed Markey has an established donor base, and he already has a staff, but it will be a stretch for him. He will need significant help.

      And, thank you Anne, for contributing to Elizabeth and for working for her! Together we will make sure that Scott Brown is never again a US Senator.

  5. Downing stronger candidate than Markey against Brown...

    Ben Downing, the articulate, smart, principled, progressive from Western Ma would be a stronger candidate than Markey for good reasons:
    1. Downing actually lives in Massachusetts. Markey does not, he has maintained a straw address for voting residence purposes for decades and is a visitor to his district when necessary.
    2. Downing will own Western and Central MA where people are wary and tired of greater Boston dictates…and fellow Senators can expand his reach to South Shore and North Shore where folks do not know Markey at all.
    3. Downing is articulate and to the point, he does not lean on political cliche and hyperbole. Markey is a boring speaker who talks in beltway-speak which is painfully dull and predictable…the art of never answering a question or taking a tough stand has been honed over 32 years.
    4. Downing is pro-gun control and pro-choice…consistently. Markey has had 32 years to take the lead on gun control, but only found his voice in a newly minted Senate candidacy press release. As for women…Markey flipped from pro-life (which helped him get his first Congressional seat) to pro-choice (when he wanted to run for the Tsongas senate seat)…not out of conviction, but out of poll-driven reality.
    5. The DSC, Kerry and Kennedy widow endorsements of Markey to clear the field for their friend play right into Brown’s hand…he must be giggling…Brown can now revamp his “It’s not the Kennedy seat, it’s the people’s seat!” mantra…and he will be right. No such option would exist with Downing.

    If Downing gets in, I will support him…with enthusiasm…after all, “It’s not the poobahs party, it’s the rank and files party!” Let the rank and file decide who will carry their banner.
    6. MOST IMPORTANTLY: Brown will make Markey the poster boy for all that’s wrong with the inept and disfunctional Congress…he will not be able to do that to Downing.

    • Elizabeth Warren was a Republican until 1996

      Did you support her? Did you volunteer for her?

      Markey is a leader on environment and net neutrality. He’s a member of the Progressive Caucus. His bonafides as a progressive voice are solid.

      I get that the GOP claims to be ready to claim Markey is out of touch. I just don’t buy it. Experience, solid credentials, hard work, leadership (rather than Brown’s followership), make Markey a tough candidate. Anyone remember Markey’s key ad in his first election? “They may tell me where to sit, but they will never tell me where to stand.” I hope he drags that oldie but goodie out again the first time Brown tries to make the “independent voice” claim.

      I agree primaries are good. I hope Downing raises his profile, but I can’t imagine how he thinks he beats Markey.

      • I was opposed to Brown...

        I wanted to defeat brown…I had never heard of Warren until the DC gurus decided she was the MA candidate of choice and got the Globe to partner with them in promoting her…I am glad she won, ut my vote for her was anti-Brown, not truly pro-Warren…Capuano would have been a more authentic choice to represent MA…

        I remember Markey’s first ad…sitting, standing, telling, not following…great gimmick…unfortunately Ed, once elected, has proven to be a good soldier pretty much doing what leadership tells him to do…not many waves to point to as a demonstration of courage…If he ever drags that old ad out again, they will wrap it in his lackluster record and go-along style and serve it up to him with crow.

        • Unfortunately, the DSCC has a poor record at picking winners

          Or candidates who support Democratic priorities, for that matter.

          It’s more about the good ol boy (or girl) network than about winning elections. For example, in 2010 in Arkansas, they backed Blanche Lincoln over Bill Halter in the primary, even though Lincoln was more conservative, and most polling indicated Halter had a better chance of retaining the seat. http://videocafe.crooksandliars.com/heather/dscc-may-cut-their-losses-lincoln-after-ba

          Same dynamic with Specter over Sestak in PA. http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/dem-primaries/95897-dscc-spending-money-to-save-specter-in-primary

          The DSCC is so bad at picking the right candidates in primaries that they’re a pretty accurate barometer of what not to do.

        • you do not speak for the primary electorate

          DC gurus may or may not think they ‘decided’ Elizabeth Warren was the “MA candidate of choice,” but it was *clearly* the people of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the activist base of the Democratic Party in said Commonwealth that “decided” that matter.

          Personally, I think the “DC gurus” you speak of saw that she was being recruited by gazillions of progressives from this state and around the country — had hundreds of thousands (and maybe millions) in grassroots donations already pledged to her before she even announced — and did the math. I don’t “DC gurus” they get to take much credit on the clearing of that field.

          Moreover, to claim that the Boston Globe did ANY favors to Elizabeth Warren, after months of silly to deranged hit pieces all summer long (and then some), really undermines any credibility you have in making that claim.

          You sounds to me like you’re whining an awful lot because the candidate(s?) of your choice either haven’t stepped up or don’t have much of a chance. You may not have much of an opinion of Ed Markey, but he’s been an incredibly effective Congressman and is very well liked by his constituents. I suggest you stop, and either focus on the positives of whoever you like, or be prepared to have your own posts served it up to you with crow.

          RyansTake   @   Wed 2 Jan 9:17 AM
        • My vote for Elizabeth Warren

          was the vote most in favor of the candidate, as opposed to against the opponent, I have ever cast in my life. Usually it’s “vote for the Democrat, who’s not going to be great but will be better than the wide-eyed right-winger on the other side.” Warren I was truly enthusiastic about.

    • Just a typo I know, but just to be clear

      I suspect that hlpeary meant a DSCC endorsement.

    • We don't need this negatively

      Markey’s a good guy… why would you try to suggest he’s a carpet bagger? He’s not.

      I’ll support any Democrat who wins the primary, and I support anyone’s right to run in it, but I’m not going to support any negativity in the race… and any supporters who are negative about a primary opponent will be making it much less likely that I’ll support their preference.

      RyansTake   @   Wed 2 Jan 9:06 AM
      • Seriously

        I strongly suggest Downings supporters, Capuano’s if he gets in, and whomever else’s refrain from attacking Markey or his supporters. Let’s invoke the “Reagan rule”-no Dems attack fellow Dems. The early and ugly negativity of the Coakley primary also hurt us against Brown. Let whoever runs and may the best candidate win. Surely we can agree on that.

  6. too much emphasis on primary / no primary

    My view is that the strength of the candidate combined with the effort of the volunteers and party behind that candidate has a lot more to do with a win vs. a loss than whether or not there is a primary.

    Coakley lost because she ran a terrible campaign, not because of the primary. Brown beat her because his campaign took every advantage of the (lack of) campaign Coakley ran.

    Warren would still have run had DeFranco stayed in the race.

    What does resonate with me this time around are the comments that people are tapped out both money-wise and energy-wise. Other than that, I don’t think that primary/no primary is the deciding factor in whether the Dems keep the seat.

  7. And if you need heart surgery or other emergency medical care ...

    …perhaps you’d also like to find someone fresh and new who isn’t encumbered by any of that pesky knowledge and experience stuff.

    Sorry, but I really don’t get the concept that having spent years in public service should disqualify you for a promotion. If that’s the case, then let’s start off by forgetting about John Kerry for Secretary of State, shall we? Maybe just skip right along and appoint Ben Downing?

    If Markey has done a good job as a Congressman, his experience and knowledge should be a plus. If he’s done a bad job, if he’s proven himself to be in the pocket of big money, than it should be a minus. I’ve yet to see convincing evidence that he’s done a bad job or that he votes the way big money wants (he certainly isn’t talking the way big oil likes, climate-wise).

    As for the terrible yoke of Boston upon western Massachusetts, I might have more sympathy if I hadn’t once again helped pay for the underground Central Artery with my inflated Mass Pike toll while driving between Framingham and Newton this week. That’s right, not driving into Boston, but just in two suburbs, but my toll money is used for improvements in Boston that many people driving the actual freaking multi-billion-dollar road don’t have to pay a toll to use. What’s the toll for using the Pike between communities in western Mass.? That’s right, nothing. If anyone is going to complain about “Boston dictates,” they will have to get in line behind those of us in the western suburbs who are still being used as an ATM to fund the Big Dig.

    • I don’t think that anybody is really arguing that Markey’s years of experience are somehow disqualifying (at least, I’m not). What I’m reacting to most strongly, I think, is the DSCC (and Kerry, to a lesser extent) concluding that Markey is their guy before they even know what the field looks like. It just reeks of Washington insiders deciding who gets to run and who doesn’t, and voters hate that – and rightly so. And no, this is not the same situation as Elizabeth Warren, for whom grassroots types were advocating long before the DC crowd got involved.

      As I’ve said before, Warren was the rare candidate as to whom the DC establishment and the local grassroots were largely in agreement. But that may have been a one-off, and the DC crowd had damn well better not assume that, just because their preferred candidate is in, they’ll get the same kind of response on the ground as they had for Warren. If they make that mistake, there’s a world of hurt waiting just around the bend.

      • Of course it's not the same situation as this last cycle

        It’s a special election. Perhaps the DSCC doesn’t feel that the compressed time frame combined with voter/donor/volunteer fatigue makes it advisable to dither around in the face of a possible Brown candidacy. I’d be a lot more ticked about this if they were doing this in a regular election cycle. But there are unusual circumstances at play here that concern them, and I can’t blame them for that.

        Maybe they’re wrong, but good grief. In most states, the governor would be appointing someone to the seat to fill out the term and that would be the extent of your democracy. Here we’re getting the chance to vote for the person to fill out the term, including the possibility of a primary, and people are complaining it’s undemocratic? Sorry, but it’s just not pinging my sympathy meter.

      • No one is arguing Markey's years of experience are a negative?

        Perhaps you can you explain to me how this portion of the original post

        Attack the establishment and people like Markey who are part of it

        puts Markey’s years of experience in a positive light?

  8. What Mayor Bill Manzi Said!

    And so the powers that be have anointed Congressman Ed Markey as the next U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, issuing a well choreographed series of endorsements to his new candidacy to replace John Kerry. Why, even the future Secretary of State got into the act, issuing a statement that sounded like an endorsement. (Probably written by the wordmasters over at Foggy Bottom for the ever so diplomatic Secretary of State in waiting.)

    Just a couple of observations on the “process”. It is not clear to me that Ed Markey is the right answer to the question on who has the best shot to hold the seat for Democrats. But far smarter people, with access to data, have determined that he is, so let us concede the point. Nonetheless what has happened here is an injustice to Capuano, Lynch, Downing, and whoever else was thinking about running. I do not come at this question as a “process” diehard, as some of my good Democratic friends do. I like to win, and I like to see things move, and on that basis I understand what happened. But Capuano, Lynch, and Downing deserved better than what they got. And I am fascinated by the utter lack of consistency of some of those in the liberal blogosphere, who have been devoted to “process” and “democracy”, who now turn a blind eye to what is nothing short of putting the fix in. It will just be a bit more difficult to raise objections in the future when it happens with a different set of candidates.

    Finally it is worth noting that one pretty big footprint lies on the back of Governor Deval Patrick, who went from a key player in the selection process to an after thought. Since the Markey move the Governor has been marginalized, with the Washington folks just blowing right by him. The Governor is used to doing the big footing, but in this case the role has been reversed.

    Thank you, Mayor Bill Manzi.

    As a grassroots organizer, I get agita around coronations. I’m glad to see Mayor Manzi raise these points.

    • If you want to be a 'grassroots' candidate

      then you shouldn’t be scared off because a couple of “establishment’ people and organizations have expressed a preference. Was Deval Patrick scared off by Tom Reilly?

      And if Capuano, Lynch, Downing or anyone else wanted to go for the seat before others started making endorsements, they should have spoken up promptly. They still can. Nothing is stopping them. But the longer they wait, the harder it’s going to be. Tough.

      Sorry to keep repeating myself here, but it seems that the point is getting lost on some people: A special election is a very compressed time frame.

  9. Injustice shminjustice

    If others want to jump in, they’re welcome to do so. Kerry stated a preference. Vicki stated a preference. The DSCC may well have been trying to clear the field, but so what? People still have to vote.

    Let the other candidates get their own endorsements. Or not. But no whining, no sour grapes. Boring!

    • Well, it's certainly an injustice to Democratic donors

      When I give money to the party, I expect it to be used on behalf of nominees, not to oppose my candidate in the primary. And “people still have to vote” doesn’t bring back the money I’ve apparently wasted by giving it to party committees.

      • If you give $ to a party committee ...

        You are giving it to them to elect Dems. They will have opinions as to whom those candidates should be. Maybe they should get involved in primaries … maybe not. (Did the NRSC have an opinion about Christine O’Donnell? Should it have had one?)

        But in any event you’re giving $ to a party organization, not to an individual candidate. You’re free to do that too.

        • Electing Dems means electing nominees

          What about after I max out to my candidate? Party committees are the only place left to go, unless I get rich and have the money to go all Citizens’ United.

          The state party stayed out of the recent race even when Warren was the only serious candidate, until she became the only Dem candidate. That’s how all party committees should operate.

          The Governor’s job is to make sure the state is well-governed. Does that mean he gets to use public resources to get better State Reps elected? Whether or not I agree with his choices, the answer is no. If we want to live in a democracy, party committees have the same obligation to stay out of contested primaries that government entities have to stay out of partisan politics altogether.

          • Also, as I posted above

            DSCC has a poor track record at picking electable candidates. So even from that perspective, this is a bad idea.

          • disagree...

            I personally wish the party would get more active choosing good progressive democrats, providing support at lower levels for building a bench of strong future candidates for higher office, and connecting candidates to resources.

            I also think that when the convention endorses a candidate, the party should be required to do something — anything — for the endorsee. That would force candidates to fight harder for grassroots building for caucuses, and would help build organization. In concert, I’d suggest changing the 15% rule to 5%, that way there wouldn’t be this “keep the other person off the ballot” mentality, but fighting for every last vote would matter in a less high-stakes way for the convention runners-up.

            As for your governor comment, I’m not clear what public resources you’re talking about, but I’d love if our Governor would fight harder to support good Democratic legislators who support his agenda. It appears as though the risk of pissing off leadership is high, yet it still seems worth it.

            • DSCC, progressives?

              The Party, alas, is really not going to be an active force in choosing attractive candidates from the progressive wing of the party.

              That’s the responsibility of the progressive wing of the party.

      • An excellent reason NOT to give money to parties

        I stopped contributing to parties and groups several election cycles ago for precisely this reason.

        Give to candidates you like instead. I would prefer the organization provide guidance to what candidates it likes and why — leave the funding to those “grassroots” the organization claims to represent. I was horrified that my contributions went to “Democrats” who betrayed my values — not just once, but time and again.

  10. If you want a primary that strengthens and builds

    your beef is with the Great and General Court. They set the ridiculous schedule that gives so much advantage to statewide incumbents and this this case all but anoints Brown.

    Want him to win? 4 months of competitive primary followed by only a month or so of actual campaigning to all the voters is Brown’s best shot. It doubles all his electoral strengths and hobbles the lesser-known Democratic nominee.

    Don’t shoot the messenger, I like primaries versus the alternative. We’d be better off with a fully competitive election in two years, not 6 months. But given the clock it’s a good thing the party is leading on this, this time.

    Gee, I never though I’d say something like that. But it’s true.

  11. There has been a lot of

    good information on this thread, but having followed and participated in these discussions here several times, it seems everything boils down to 1) how should we support progressives and 2) what the purpose of primaries is.

    As I understand it, primaries came about to give party members, as opposed to the party hierarchy, the opportunity to decide the nominee. I don’t see much evidence that a primary makes a candidate better. I suppose it can, e.g. Obama. But it doesn’t have to. It can also cost a lot of money and weaken the eventual nominee.

    I’ve been defending Markey, whom I know little about. I have nothing against Ben Downing, though I have doubts about his ability to run for state-wide office from Berkshire County,which has a very small population, and provides a small base at best. I live in Hampshire County, which is generally liberal, and I’ve never heard of the guy. I can’t believe he’s going to get much traction in counties where residents think Massachusetts ends at Worcester.

    With that said, I wonder if the real issue here has less to do with the candidates and more to do with intra-party tension between factions.

    • Democratic activists have strong opinions

      About prospective candidates based on Democratic values and personal observation of a prospective candidates political accomplishments and character. We may have different opinions , but it is hardly at the level of inter party factions. Deep breaths people

      • Forgot to sign off with Go Mike!

        Thanks for your forbearance.

      • Thanks for clarifying, Judy.

        Maybe not factions, but recurring themes that come up over and over again.

      • Activists/Grassroots

        So many of us are quite parochial, in that we normally rally around prominent regional leadership. Watching, but more importantly working, next to these folks, endears us.

        Too many prominent Dems haunt those “catered side rooms” that most only pass by at Convention. Or worse, spend the year doing the ‘rubber chicken circut’ looking for machine validation.

        John Walsh/Deval Patrick showed us another way. But, here we go again.

        • Being from Hampshire County

          I’m generally non-parochial. We don’t really have people running for state-wide office. Generally, I wait to see who my people–John Olver, Ellen Story, Stan Rosenberg, John Scibak–are supporting and I go along with them.

          We have occasional races I’ve worked on within the county, and in those cases, my candidates were accused of being the machine candidates. Both happened to be well-connected and endorsed by all the major political people in our area, but they also were genuinely progressive and well-qualified.

          Ironically, in one race, a primary opponent, who had never been involved in government, but had activist connections, though not actual activist experience, completely misrepresented the office in question and its role and ran a generally mendacious campaign. When she lost the primary, she bitterly went on to endorse the independent candidate, not her Democratic opponent.

          I guess there’s always tension between the “activist” and the “government” branches of the Democratic Party, and I can only speak of my limited experience, but the unfairness can go in both directions. I’ve experienced this activist/government tension on the local level and the intra-party tension on the county level. That’s why I asked about it. Maybe it’s an insider/outsider tension. But I have no experience with it on the state level.

    • Seems to me that Capuano supporters still believe

      he would have handily beaten Scott Brown even though he got crushed by Martha Coakley in the primary, and so want him to have another crack at it. I didn’t have strong feelings about him one way or the other before the special but thought he ran a terrible primary campaign. Based on that, I’ve got no enthusiasm for him as a candidate in another time-compressed special election cycle. Obviously a fair amount of folks here disagree with me on that.

      • Right...

        …I think Cap is a fantastic congressman, and I was a supporter in 2009. But his poor showing in that election — and especially his bizarre flip flop on health care (suggesting he’d vote against a bill in the senate which he voted for in the house, a day after criticizing Coakley for essentially saying the same thing) — make me reticent to jump onboard this round.

        I would love to see him think about the governorship.

  12. I do think Capuano could have beaten Brown.

    He’s a tougher campaigner than Coakley proved to be. My reason for supporting him last time was that he was the only member of the House running. I argued he already knew his way around Capitol Hill, knew the legislation (especially ACA which we’ll recall that election was happening right in the middle of that fight), and could just transfer staff from one side or the other. That was that election and Markey could make the same arguments regarding House experience, and since my support did not go into adoring fan territory I could take or leave Capuano being in the current race.

    • Few points

      Charley mentioned sour grapes a few posts back and the Downing supporters, who just assume their candidate is so much more electable and progressive and wonderful, should work their asses off ten times harder to make sure he wins. Dean got all the big endorsements in 04 and still got his ass kicked by Kerry on the ground in Iowa. Instead of already violating the Reagan rule by bashing Markey how about you hit the ground so your guy awins? That would prove the power of the grassroots no? We don’t even have an election yet and the firing squad and self immolation is starting. The goal is simple: keep Brown out. Let the best candidate for that purpose win and let the voters decide.

  13. JConway, was that really intended as a reply to me?

    I haven’t been bashing Markey as your comment suggests. In fact I’d be quite satisfied if he were our candidate.

    • Not at all sir

      The quality of my posts go down considerably with a smart phone both in typing and ensuring the formatting is correct. I believe you and I are on the same page. I will disagree with the Capuano argument though, if he couldn’t beat Coakley he wouldn’t have beaten Brown and I say that as a supporter.

      • There are no counterfactual facts

        just speculation.

        I propose this: Brown could have beaten anyone likely to win the ticket. He could have beaten Warren if things had gone differently. He could beat Markey, Downing, Capuano, Dem-du-Jour next year.

        Also, anyone could have beaten Brown, in principle. Even Coakley, arguably, had she handled things differently. And whoever gets the nomination could beat him.

        I suggest all this talk about who could’ve done what is silly and mostly in the service of preferences about different potential candidates. About Capuano in this case.

        He’s a great guy, a real fighter, and I’m sorry (but not surprised) that he could not overcome Coakley’s advantage, made nearly insurmountable by the truncated time scale.

        If he runs this time I’ll be very surprised though.

        • Fair points

          I’d be surprised if he ran as well, or any other big names for that matter. Due to the truncated time schedule I’d much rather start a general election as soon as possible. I got a few issues with Markey, but he is thoughtful, seasoned, mature, and committed to issues I care about. Can’t really ask for anything better.

        • Blame for Brown

          No one I talked to, took Brown seriously. His tenure in local politics had foreshadowed a loss. Brown entered the race, I’m told, as a positional race for a Constituional office, here.

          I blame the high priced consultants that completely missed the Tea Party wave. I blame the Unions for not crushing Brown’s ‘barncoat & truck’ facade, Brown spoon fed the rank and file. But, most of all, I blame POTUS for not safeguarding his supermajority in the Senate.

          It was Obama’s worst political play, so far, and lends credence to the fears of folks like Matt Damon: The Game Is Rigged.

          Brown cannot ride a wave that does not exist, this time around. Fiscal cliff fixes will show Congress is willing to work across the isle. Brown’s ‘brand’ is fading. He will most likely run for Gov, anyways.

          If we GOTV properly, does it matter much who runs? To common folks, that is. Sure. Certain lobbyists/special interests have their hooks in differently, so they may prefer one congresscritter over another. But to you and me, voting for a progressive over a blue dog is little more than placebo.

  14. Seamusromney,

    I’m pretty sure it is illegal to use public resources to get your choice candidates elected, so either clarify, walk back, or back up your suggestion above that the Governor is doing that. He does of course have every right in the world to endorse candidates he feels he can best work with, just as the President does with Congress. The state party stayed out because we have a convention process to follow, but the DSCC exists to find good candidates.

    • I never suggested he is

      It was an analogy. I said it would be totally inappropriate for him to do so, and it’s equally inappropriate for the DSCC to misuse party resources by meddling in primaries, for similar reasons.

      In a vacuum, I would love it if this particular Governor could use the state’s money to get more and better Dems elected. But I wouldn’t support that in the real world because that means other Governors would have the same privilege, and overall the Commonwealth would be worse off with that policy.

      Allowing the DSCC to use party resources in a primary creates the same kind of problem. It’s great to see them do it when it’s your guy they support, but think carefully about allowing that to happen. Next time it may not be your candidate, and as a party we end up worse off.

  15. Money

    My suspicion is that part of the reason they’re lining up behind Markey is he has a boatload of cash. Remember, they wanted Joe Kennedy II to run because of his cash. Ultimately, I think that is what it comes down to. While he would obviously spend that in the primary, it takes money to raise money and that’s a great base.

    I have not backed anybody, but I do think the state party should lay down some ground rules since it is, after all, John Walsh’s apparatus that has won us elections. Then after this election is done, the legislature should undo this ridiculous special election crap.

    • What sort of ground rules?

      Without convention the state party is already supposed to stay out until the primary, though may waive that if the deadline passes without an additional candidate. I do still favor gubernatorial appointment until the next biennial and am not aware of any other state that fills its Senate seats by special election.

      • No Other States

        No other states do. We hoisted ourselves by our own petard. That’s why it should be changed immediately after the election. Hell, they don’t even have to wait for the election. Just post-date the legislation for after the date Patrick’s sets.

        As to ground rules, I mean like say to candidates “we are your field operation, you don’t have time to form one, so play nice or become Massachusetts’ Next Top Coakley.” Nothing especially formal.

    • If campaign cash were the only reason

      to line up behind Markey then Marty Meehan would have been a better choice. If memory serves Meehan is sitting on $5 million plus in a federal account. Clearly Markey brings other factors to the table.

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Tue 25 Apr 12:55 AM