I doubt it.
Conventional wisdom: Gabs has more money and is trying to play to the center (pushing the immigration issue, and sorta kinda favoring a tax rollback, maybe). Also, recent polling shows all three Dem candidates beating Healey, but shows Gabs with the biggest lead. Therefore, the CW goes, Healey is worried about him and is running a negative attack ad against him to try to get Deval Patrick nominated instead.
Adam Reilly has a different, and more persuasive, take:
Scenario 1: Democrats uncritically accept the picture of Gabrieli painted by Republican Kerry Healey, decide he’s just out to make a quick buck, and decide not to vote for him on September 19.
Scenario 2: Democrats generally ignore Healey’s ad when they vote next week.
Scenario 3: Democrats conclude that Gabrieli is the Democrat Healey fears most, and undecideds/weak Patrick backers/weak Reilly backers subsequently vote for him on the 19th.
Scenario 1 strikes me as unlikely. Scenario 2 is a possibility. But Scenario 3 seems downright probable. Which makes me wonder: what if Healey’s actual goal is making Gabrieli’s nomination more likely, not less?
Call me zany. But I think that’s a real possibility.
“I’ve got you this time, Brer Rabbit,” said Brer Fox, jumping up and shaking off the dust. “You’ve sassed me for the very last time. Now I wonder what I should do with you?”
Brer Rabbit’s eyes got very large. “Oh please Brer Fox, whatever you do, please don’t throw me into the briar patch.”
“Maybe I should roast you over a fire and eat you,” mused Brer Fox. “No, that’s too much trouble. Maybe I’ll hang you instead.”
“Roast me! Hang me! Do whatever you please,” said Brer Rabbit. “Only please, Brer Fox, please don’t throw me into the briar patch.”
“If I’m going to hang you, I’ll need some string,” said Brer Fox. “And I don’t have any string handy. But the stream’s not far away, so maybe I’ll drown you instead.”
“Drown me! Roast me! Hang me! Do whatever you please,” said Brer Rabbit. “Only please, Brer Fox, please don’t throw me into the briar patch.”
“The briar patch, eh?” said Brer Fox. “What a wonderful idea! You’ll be torn into little pieces!”
Grabbing up the tar-covered rabbit, Brer Fox swung him around and around and then flung him head over heels into the briar patch. Brer Rabbit let out such a scream as he fell that all of Brer Fox’s fur stood straight up. Brer Rabbit fell into the briar bushes with a crash and a mighty thump. Then there was silence.
Brer Fox cocked one ear toward the briar patch, listening for whimpers of pain. But he heard nothing. Brer Fox cocked the other ear toward the briar patch, listening for Brer Rabbit’s death rattle. He heard nothing.
Then Brer Fox heard someone calling his name. He turned around and looked up the hill. Brer Rabbit was sitting on a log combing the tar out of his fur with a wood chip and looking smug.
“I was bred and born in the briar patch, Brer Fox,” he called. “Born and bred in the briar patch.”
And Brer Rabbit skipped away as merry as a cricket while Brer Fox ground his teeth in rage and went home.
“Oh yes, Deval Patrick! Tom Reilly! Nominate whoever you please,” said Ker Healey, “only please don’t nominate Chris Gabrieli!”
Ginny Buckingham, the Republican’s Republican and an experienced political operative, has been onto this for weeks now. She’s seen enough races to know how much of a threat Deval Patrick is to Kerry Healey, and why.
Let’s not see Ker Healey skipping away after the Democratic primary, as merry as a cricket.
UPDATE: In response to some of the comments: I should have made my basic point clearer, which is this: vote for the guy you like best. They can all beat Kerry Healey. Don’t try to put yourself in the head of voters who don’t think the way you do, or who have different priorities. A lot of us – myself included – fell into the “electability trap” with John Kerry, and look how that turned out. Vote for your candidate because he believes what you believe, and let the chips fall where they may.