Monday, January 4, 2010

Martha! Olly olly oxen free!

Hard to believe, but we are going to head to the polls just two weeks from tomorrow to elect our next U.S. Senator. Why is it hard to believe? Because as far as I can tell, there is only one candidate actually running for Senate. Every time I turn on the TV or read the news, I see and hear Scott Brown.

Scott Brown, Scott Brown, everywhere Scott Brown.

I believe--if my memory serves me correctly--that the Democrats nominated a candidate last month. It was Martha-something-or-another. Honestly, it’s hard for me to remember because I haven’t heard from her in weeks.

Too bad, really, because I am going to vote for her. She’s the best candidate in the race. She’s probably going to win. But unless she decides to start campaigning, she’s going to win by a hell of a lot smaller margin than she should. I mean...why should your every day Massachusetts voter brave the cold and the snow to cast a vote for her when she hasn’t found it worth her while to actually ask for a vote?

I’m hoping that this is all a matter of Martha Coakley waiting for the holidays to end, and starting with Tuesday's debate the airwaves and news shows will be wall-to-wall Martha. This has happened to me before--where I’ve wanted my candidate to get off the couch and into the press and it all worked out just fine in the end. Ultimately, I guess it doesn’t matter if she wins by 100 votes or 100,000 as long as she wins.

But allowing Brown to define the race by letting him have unfettered access to voters for the last two weeks seems like a bad idea to me. He has begun to generate some real buzz locally and nationally and that might not have happened if Coakley had tried to squash him immediately. Letting underdogs hang around until the end of the game is never a good strategy.
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