Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Less than 24 hours before the one year anniversary of President Barack Obama’s inauguration, the Democrats lost the U.S. senate to Scott Brown, a little-known GOP state senator. Brown was swept to victory to fill the vacant Senate seat long held by the late Edward M. Kennedy in Massachusetts.

With 93 percent of the vote counted, Brown won by a decisive margin of 52 percent to defeating the Democratic challenger, Martha Coakley, the state’s attorney general.

The loss is stunning for the Obama administration. The president, who spent nearly all of 2009 focused on healthcare reform as his signature issue, must now face a newly elected Republican senator who ran on a campaign to stop healthcare reform from becoming law.

While the finger pointing is underway inside the Obama administration, the meaning of Scott Brown’s stunning election upset is simple. The president lost the support of independent voters who are worried about the economy and jobs.

Perhaps the words of Marlene Connolly, 73, of North Andover, a lifelong Democrat who said she cast her first vote for a Republican on Tuesday, may best explain Brown’s meteoric rise:

“I’m hoping that it gives a message to the country. If Massachusetts puts Brown in, it’s a message of ‘that’s enough.’ Let’s stop the giveaways and let’s get jobs going.”

This entry was posted in Democrats, Independents, Massachusetts, News, Politics, Scott Brown and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Rock says:

    This is what happens when Democrats take voters for granted.

    Enjoy your loss, Dems. You earned this one.

  2. Adirondacky says:

    I saw it coming. There is enough blame to go around but as you point out, there’s a real fear in the country that Washington isn’t taking care of the people who elected and trusted them to accomplish things like jobs creation. Where I live, unemployment is close to 15% and it isn’t getting better.

  3. lea-lea says:

    Obama is starting out in the political center.

    Now that he’s lost the senate, where can he go to get anything done now? The center-right? The far right?

    I predict Obama will go to the right or he essentially spends the balance 3 years as a lame duck and he’s too ambitious to accept such a status.

  4. Dmitris says:

    Ted Kennedy is rolling over in his grave tonight.

  5. Tiny Dancer says:

    Gay rights legislation?

    What’s dat? Maybe in 2016 if we’re lucky.

  6. Fran says:

    Damn. I think the message is 52% of Massachusetts residents have gone off the deep end.

  7. TOM339 says:

    Back in December, in the midst of the campaign while Scott Brown was busily campaigning across the state, do you know where Martha Coakley was?

    She stopped campaigning and took two weeks off to vacation in the the Caribbean.

    Now, two things were at play. Either she thought she was entitled to win or, she just didn’t care. Personally, I believe it was the former. Coakley thought the election was a slam dunk and she would ascend to Kennedy’s senate seat.

  8. Kate says:

    I’ve always said Republican’s don’t know their sociology but Democrats are completely ignorant of psychology. If you focus on who you think people should be rather than what humans are (and treat the reality with derision) this is what you get.

    Most of us saw this coming when they shoved Obama down the voters throats. They gave Ted Kennedy’s seat to a Republican for Christ’s sake! But no, they will find someone else to blame, understanding neither their own errors nor the drives behind the very human people who voted in this election.

  9. Joe in Colorado says:

    Tom339 – You’re in Virginia. Is this election one of the reasons you dislike Tim Kaine? As Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Kaine was comatose while Martha Coakley sank further and further in the polls. Why didn’t he mobilize the troops earlier?

  10. Aunt Peg says:

    Massachusetts voters elected a man who supports the use of waterboarding.

    Maybe Massachusetts isn’t Texas or Mississippi but it’s damned close.

  11. Jonny says:

    Hmmm. This is a disturbing loss for many reasons, but did the Dems really “lose the Senate”? Or did they lose a seat in the Senate and a so-called super majority there? They still have a larger majority in the Senate than the GOP ever had under Bush.

    And let’s get real about that super majority. Given the herd of cats that is the Dem Party (including folks like Lieberman), it’s not like they got much mileage out of that super majority. I’m not trying to polish this turd, but I understand why the GOP and Tea Partier’s are overplaying the significance of this win for Brown — I don’t understand why the Left is participating in that particular spin. Perhaps, this sort of hyperbole and willingness to let the other side continue to define the terms of the debate is part of the reason why the Dems (and the Left in general) never get anywhere politically.

  12. Brigadoon says:

    The Democrats now have 59 senators. One isn’t really a Democrat but an Independent who caucuses with the Democrats. With a 60 seat majority, Democrats still couldn’t get anything done. Now, they have 59 seats with November looking like it will be a blood bath at the polls. I would call yesterday’s results in Massachusetts a loss. In fact, an epic loss.

  13. feminazi says:

    Tom339 and Joe in Colorado – I have to think if Howard Dean were still the chairman of the DNC, we would be having a celebration this morning instead of a wake. Remember, it was Dean who argued Vicky Kennedy needed to be persuaded to finish her late husband’s senate term. By contrast, Tim Kaine is the person responsible for pushing Martha Coakley into a race she was ill-suited to win.

  14. Harry says:

    Excellent point, feminazi. Excellent point. The Dems need Dr. Dean, stat and not the homophobe, Tim Kaine.

  15. Big Hank says:

    Methinks the Teabagger Party has found their guy to run for president in 2012.

    Scott Brown is tall, attractive, well spoken and he’s fearless in a way the Democratic grassroots have begged Obama to be since the election.

  16. Peace Nick says:

    What the hell was Massachusetts thinking?

  17. DMason says:

    Brown/Palin 2012. RNC Chairman Michael Steele is licking his chops today and ordering the campaign signs.

  18. john says:

    is the loss of the center the cause? or the loss of enthusiasm of those who voted for this administration hoping for change?

  19. Randy Arroyo says:

    I hope yesterday’s election in Massachusetts isn’t a harbinger of what’s to come in November. If it is then we’re in trouble. Obama isn’t a fighter and he will roll over and play dead, letting the GOP kick him in the gut.

  20. Ron Kubik says:

    Dear Randy:

    It’s not just a harbinger, all democratic seats are up for grabs now, even Barbara Boxer’s seat is in peril, IMHO. It’s a good bet that republicans will pick up way more than the 42 seats they need for a house majority. Until Tuesday night, I didn’t think republicans could re-take senate this year, but now I think it’s very possible. Gaining ten senate seats sounds outlandish, but it has happened many times in US history.

    Yes, I am a republican … but also a long-time political junkie and I do not make the above statement out of partisanship or wishful thinking.

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