Gomez got 45% of the vote. Very low voter turn out. Markey was a weak candidate. He won votes because he was less bad.
It is too bad Massachusets does not have someone great to send to the Senate.
that you regard this as insightful.
here, these days Mass. Republicans will get pretty close to 45% in any statewide race. Doesn’t matter who the Republican is. We’ve seen this 4 straight times, in super-high turnout and super-low turnout elections (I count Charlie Baker, because he got 42% with a decent third-party showing and I’m sure Cahill took some fiscal conservative, anti-incumbent votes from Baker).
Not a blot on Markey; He found a way to win by 10 in an extremely low-turnout election. Nothing to sneeze at. The days of 67-33 statewide wins are, at the least, on hiatus here.
I guess Markey isn’t super exciting, but the low-turnout was a product of many factors. It was a special election in late June when people are dealing with vacations and graduations, there were no other races at stake, there were no issues at stake either. Gomez decided to run an almost entirely issue-free campaign, so there wasn’t really anything to get people especially excited about this race. There is not really any evidence that people generally think of Markey as “less bad”, although there probably are some who feel that way.
In any case, I think that looking at voter stats is probably a poor way to project the future effectiveness of a Senator.
In the last 20 years, a growing chunk of Olympic coverage concerns the lives of the athletes rather than their sport, their training, and their execution. So too, it seems elections. Markey has been an excellent legislator, but, to the dismay of the media, there isn’t much personal interest stuff to get wrapped up with. So to the media, the election was like a reality show competition without the behind the story interviews and the close ups on faces at emotional high points.
Gomez’ attack was peculiarly Rovian: attack Markey’s greatest strength; insist it is a weakness. So instead of “viewers” looking forward to having an awesome legislator representing us, they ended up besmirched with FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt).
The Rovian attack coupled with the purely on-the-merits campaign combined to produce a rather bloodless contest.
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