Scott Brown has won a seat occupied by the Kennedy family for 55 of the last 57 years. He won by 5% in a state that had not elected a Republican Senator since the early 70s, a state that Barack Obama won by 26%, and is the most Democratic state in the union based on the votes in the last four Presidential elections. Massachusetts is the only state that voted for George McGovern in 1972.
Brown had never run statewide before, other than in his party's primary for senator, when few turned out to vote. He beat Martha Coakley, who had won statewide with 70% of the vote for Attorney General little more than a year ago. Massachusetts is also a state where only 11% of the voters are registered Republicans, the entire ten-person U. S. House delegation are Democrats, the Governor is a Democrat, and the State House and Senate are 90% and 87.5% Democratic, respectively. It is not a GOP friendly state.
Brown won in seven of the state's 10 Congressional districts.
Several writers have weighed in on the significance of this election. Barack Obama, who has spent much of his first year, as he did during the campaign, blaming George Bush for everything wrong in the U.S. and the world, and never accepting an ounce of personal responsibility for any of the political problems he is having, now says the voters in Massachusetts were reacting with anger to all that has happened in the last eight years. In other words, they voted for Republican Scott Brown to express their anger at the prior Republican administration. For the record, Brown ran as the 41st vote to block Obama's health care reform bill, against tax increases (and for targeted tax cuts to provide incentives for employers to hire again), and against trials for terrorists in civilian courts. Does electing him sound like a repudiation of George Bush?
In Virginia, there was a 25% turn in the electorate from 2008 to 2009, in New Jersey, 21%, and in Massachusetts, 31%. A President less enraptured with himself might think about what he has done or not done to bring on this seismic shift in the electorate. Today's Rasmussen tracking poll shows 25% strongly approve of Obama, 43% strongly disapprove. Overall approval disapproval is 45-54. eight months ago, the approval score was 69-28, and the strongly approve, strongly disapprove numbers were 44-15.
Barack Obama is a man of zero humility and great ideological passion. His agenda of redistribution of the American economy (growing the pie is irrelevant) will not fade away. Yesterday he launched a new populist assault designed to redirect the public's anger from his misguided health care reform effort (thankfully, probably now dead in the water) to banks and rich Wall Streeters.
He will continue with his redistributionist agenda abroad -- favoring the weak (Palestinians) against the strong (Israel), always assuming that the weak party is a victim, and has moral superiority. He is also uncomfortable projecting American strength abroad, since he is more comfortable with a world of more equal players, than one in which we are the strongest or one of the strongest world powers (after all, he believes the strong always abuse the weak). There is no better commentary on Obama's foreign policy worldview than his infinite patience with the Iranians and their effort to complete a nuclear weapons program, and his passion for achieving a big nuclear disarmament deal with the Russians.
During the campaign, some of us warned of the tragic error of electing a community organizer with zero practical experience in business or creating jobs, or governance, and an ideological leftist, a product of too many years in academia, and life in college towns, and too many sermons from Reverend Wright.
Caroline Glick on the Massachusetts election and Obama's pressure on Israel; Professor Charles Lipson on the role of national security in the Massachusetts race;