Jim Clark: Does Scott Brown’s success equate to a Republican surge?

Scott Brown Republican

More "Scott Brown Republicans" to come?

(TahoeBonanza.com) INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Political pundits on both the left and right have weighed in on the causes of the remarkable defeat in Massachusetts of Attorney General Martha Coakley by State Sen. Scott Brown in the

race for the US Senate seat vacancy created by the death of Ted Kennedy. Republicans are giddy with delight at the upset, blaming it on President Barack Obama’s health care legislation, while Obama improbably attributed the result to “the same forces that swept me into office”.

In November of last year Coakley polled 31 percent ahead of Brown and as recently as mid-December her lead was 17 percent. The contest was seen as such a slam dunk for the Democrat that Massachusetts media did not contract with any independent pollsters to conduct exit polls with voters and analyze the results. As a result we have relatively little unbiased analysis of the events.

As the Jan. 19 election approached the gap narrowed to a dead heat and President Obama made the decision to go to Massachusetts (where he enjoys a 60 percent to 40 percent favorability ratio) and campaign for Coakley. By the time Obama returned to Washington, Brown had opened up a nine-point lead and on Election Day won by a solid five points.

One national pollster, Scott Rasmussen, made the decision to conduct exit polls at his own expense. What his firm found was that Scott Brown voters were most concerned about Obama’s soft stance on terrorism … disaffection with his health care legislation came in second. Apparently in many Bay State voters’ minds, all of January’s disturbing reports about arm twisting, bribery, special deals for unions and the like by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid seeking votes to pass the Senate version of Obamacare were overshadowed by the ineptitude of Obama Administration officials’ handling of the underwear bomber’s attempt to blow up a US airliner Christmas Day.  More…


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