Archive for ‘Massachusetts Senate race’

January 29, 2013

Kerry wins confirmation, will become 68th secretary of state

The nomination of Massachusetts Democratic Senator John F Kerry (above), has been approved by the U.S Senate. [ photo: Boston Globe]

[ photo: Boston Globe] 

With broad bipartisan support, the U.S Senate on Tuesday confirmed Sen. John F Kerry (D-Mass) as the next Secretary of State.

The final tally was 94-3, with three Republicans : Texas Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, and James Inhofe of Oklahoma opposing the nomination. Senators John Hooven (R-N.D.) and Patty Murray (D-Wash) were absent from the floor, while Kerry himself voted present in a vote that caps  over a quarter century in the Senate.

Kerry, a decorated Vietnam War Veteran, five-term Senator, and the 2004  Democratic presidential candidate, was nominated by President Obama last month to replace Hillary Rodham Clinton as the President’s chief foreign policy adviser in his second term cabinet.

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December 21, 2012

President Obama taps Kerry for Secretary of State

Kerry nom

President Obama has chosen Massachusetts Senator John F Kerry (right), as his nominee to be the next U.S Secretary of State….( LA Times, from Carolyn Castor/ Associated Press )

President Obama has nominated Massachusetts Senator and former Democratic Presidential candidate John F Kerry to succeed Hillary Clinton as the 68th U.S Secretary of State, a move that could lead to yet another high stakes Senate race in the Commonwealth.

 The President announced the nomination to members of the press Friday afternoon, during a joint appearance with Kerry and Vice President Joe Biden in the White House Roosevelt room. In his prepared remarks, the President lauded the five-term lawmaker and Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for what he called ‘an extraordinarily distinguished career’.

 “Over these many years, John has earned the respect and confidence of leaders around the world,” said the President. “I think it’s safe to say that few individuals know as many Presidents and Prime Ministers or grasps our foreign policies as firmly as John Kerry.”

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July 1, 2012

Round up of Massachusetts U.S Senate race part II

Senator Scott Brown (R-MA), picture from desmosblog

Since Warren clinched the nomination nearly a month ago, along with the ads which have been scattered across the television landscape, its debate preparations that have received much of the attention.

Earlier this month Victoria Reggie Kennedy, the widow of the late Senator Edward M Kennedy (D-MA) extended an invitation to both Warren and Brown for a debate hosted by former NBC Nightly News Anchor Tom Brokaw at the Edward M Kennedy Institute at UMASS Boston. Warren accepted the invitation, but Brown who won the special election in January 2010 to fill the seat left vacant after the August 2009 death of the longtime Senator, made his acceptance contingent upon Kennedy promising to stay neutral in the Senate debate and MSNBC not host the forum.

Though Kennedy has not yet formally endorsed Warren and the Institute said they were still looking for sponsors, both this conditions were deemed as ‘inappropriate’ and ‘unprecedented’, so Brown declined the offer and the debate is off.  The Brown campaign said that to have the Institute’s head trustee host a debate and possibly later endorse his opponent was a conflict of interest and so the debate was off. Such a  conflict however, didn’t seem to present itself when Brown challenged Warren to a debate on conservative leaning Boston talker Dan Rea’s radio show.

Warren turned down the offer to appear on the WBZ News radio show this Wednesday and Brown went on the show anyway and in an awkward way the two seemed to be debating from afar and indirectly, when Brown was on Dan Rea’s show  and  Warren  appeared  on MSNBC’s ‘The Rachel Maddow Show’.

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June 29, 2012

Massachusetts U.S Senate race round up part one

Much has happened over the past few weeks since I last blogged about the Massachusetts senate race.

During the Massachusetts  state Democratic convention in Springfield on June 2, the party faithful rallied around Elizabeth Warren who officially captured the Democratic nomination for November’s high stakes senate race against incumbent Republican freshman Senator Scott Brown (R-MA).

Warren’s popularity with the liberal and more populist activist elements of the party base was on clear display when she won the nomination with the backing of 95.7% of delegates, more backing than any state Democratic candidate for any office received in thirty years of the convention system.  The former Harvard Law Professor and  Obama administration special assistant trounced her last remaining rival for the nomination, long shot candidate and Milton immigration Attorney Marissa DeFranco who failed to muster the necessary 15 percent support from delegates to challenge Warren in the Sept 6 Democratic primary election.

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June 5, 2012

7 News/ Suffolk University Poll: Massachusetts senate race tied

Just a single point separates the two likely candidates in the much anticipated Massachusetts Senate race according to a recent poll released on Wednesday May 23.

A 7 News Suffolk University poll of 600 likely voters taken between May 20 and 22, shows Republican incumbent Senator Scott Brown leading Democrat Elizabeth Warren 48 to 47 percent, well within the polls’ margin of error of +/- 4 percent. Another five percent said they were undecided, while one percent refused to answer.

Brown. a freshman Republican exploded onto the national political scene in January 2010 with an upset victory over Democrat Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley in the special election to fill the senate seat left vacant following the August 2009 death of longtime Democratic Senator Edward Kennedy; is being challenged in his bid for a full term of his own by former Harvard Law Professor and Obama administration special adviser Elizabeth Warren. Despite her lack of prior political experience, Warren’s populist critiques of Wall Street lending practices has made her popular with progressive activists.

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May 19, 2012

Republicans won’t let go of Warren’s ancestry issue

Massachusetts Democratic Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren after speaking at the 31st annual ‘Noho Pride Celebration’ in Northampton. (Photo: Alex Ross).

 The latest controversy on what if any role Massachusetts Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren’s Native American ancestry played in  her hiring as a Professor,  is  a story on which Republicans are not letting go. 

Almost every day for more than two weeks, the Brown campaign or a Republican surrogate has highlighted the latest bit of news to emerge on the subject, often citing articles on conservative websites in a bid to coax more coverage from the mainstream news media. Warren’s failure to offer a full and concise answer on what role her ancestry has played in her professional career has left an opening that has allowed the questions to linger.

On Monday, Brown’s campaign manager, Jim Barnett, held a telephone briefing with reporters, offering a near exhaustive catalogue of details about the issue and demanding anew that Warren release personnel records from her jobs at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania law schools.

“The question here is not about Elizabeth Warren’s credentials, so much as it is about Elizabeth Warren’s integrity and truthfulness and willingness to be transparent,’’ Barnett said.

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January 18, 2012

Warren fundraising strength shows, while both sides seek to curb super PAC ads

Seeking to capitalize on last week’s news that they brought in more money from donors in the closing three months of 2011 than incumbent Republican Senator Scott Brown, the campaign of  Massachusetts Democratic Senate hopeful Elizabeth Warren detonated a ‘money bomb’ Friday, that will deliver even more.

The fundraising blitz, which according to the campaign staff has already brought in $236,000, is scheduled to coincide with the two-year anniversary of Brown’s surprise victory over Democratic state Attorney General Martha Coakley in the 2010 Special Election  to complete the term of Sen. Edward M Kennedy, who died in August 2009.

Last Wednesday, the Warren campaign disclosed that during the fourth fundraising quarter of 2011, (or what is the term  employed to what us mortal refer to as October, November, and December), Warren raked in $5.7 million, while Brown raised $3.2 million during that same period.

Still Brown now has a campaign account totaling $12.8 million, while Warren who began flirting with a  possible Senate run in August and rocketed to the top of the Democratic primary field in September, has $6 million altogether.

Recent polls suggest that Warren maintains has developed a slim lead over Brown in the strongly liberal state. But Brown’s staunch support from Republicans, likability among independents,and image as a bi-partisan problem solver willing to defy partisan orthodoxy, makes Brown a strong candidate. 

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December 13, 2011

State Rep. Tom Conroy bows out of Massachusetts Senate race

The number of candidates in the Democratic primary field was widled down further yesterday, when State Rep. Tom Conroy  declared that he will be ending his campaign to be the party’s nominee in next year’s Massachusetts Senate race.  Instead, Conroy says he will  run for a fourth term to his seat in the Massachusetts House, where he represents the communities of Lincoln, Sudbury, and Wayland which comprise the 13th Middlesex District.

News of the former Washinton D.C Foreign Policy aide turned private sector consultant turned state politician’s departure from the race came Monday morning in the form of a letter posted on his campaign website.

Through October and November, I delivered a strong and clear message about who I am, why I was running, and why I could win. I continued to learn about the concerns and hopes of voters throughout Massachusetts. Your stories, ideas and suggestions inspired me. Your generous contributions of time, talent and treasure empowered our team to continue efforts to win back the US Senate seat for the future of Massachusetts. However after much reflection, it is clear that, while support for my candidacy has been generous, we could not run the kind of campaign we needed to run throughout next year.

With deep gratitude and a still strong commitment to a winning path forward for all, I am withdrawing from the race for U.S. Senate.

Later in the morning at a press conference in front of the State capitol, where he officially ended his bid and later endorsed Democratic front runner Elizabeth Warren, he reportedly said that the enthusiasm she generated, fund raising success, and name recognition; were all obstacles too large for him to compete against in the primary.

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December 12, 2011

New Poll: Warren ahead of Brown by 7, 55% of voters say they could change thier minds

Massachusetts Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren now tops Sen.Scott Brown (R-MA) by seven points according to a new poll, in what could be one of the only races where Democrats have a chance to pick-up a Republican held seat

Massachusetts Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren has opened up a lead over incumbent Republican Senator Scott Brown, besting him by seven points in a hypothetical general election match-up, according to findings in a new poll released on Dec 7.

The survey of 505 registered voters in the Commonwealth,conducted by UMASS Lowell in conjunction with the Boston Herald between Dec 1 and 6, showed Warren defeating Brown by 49-42% in next year’s Senate race.

Warren, a former Harvard Law professor turned Consumer advocate and Obama administration adviser, is still technically competing for the Democratic nomination, against four other candidates. But, given Warren’s name recognition, fundraising by progressive activists, and an onslaught of ads against her by conservative leading groups, it seems she will most likely be the party’s nominee after primary votes are cast in September’s Democratic primary. Brown, a freshman Republican Senator, who’s an upset victory in January 2010 in a Special election for the Senate to fill the seat previously held by Senator Edward M Kennedy and was a precursor to the gains made in the House and Senate in last years midterm elections, faces no Republican primary challenge. 

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November 21, 2011

Weekly Links- November 13 – 20 ‘Happy Thanksgiving’

The week began with the clearing out of ‘Occupy’ protesters from Zucotti Park Tuesday morning, and the subsequent re-occupation (minus the tents and camping accouterments) of members of the two month old movement against what they say is corporate advirace and income inequality. Nearly 200 were arrested by police during the eviction.

  •  Structures were dismantled and some property was confiscated by police. Among those entities taken apart, was the so-called ‘People’s Library’, an accumulation of books and periodicals set up for public consumption at the camp site. After Police took down the initial library and confiscated the books, a new collection was begun at Zucotti Park. Then that library was also dismantled and its materials destroyed. The American Library Association has expressed alarm over the incident.
  • In New York City and other communities and college campuses around the globe, ‘Occupy’ demonstrators participated in  what was deemed a ‘National Day of Action’ to condemn the crackdowns, rail against austerity measures, and celebrate the two month anniversary of the movement. Marchers took part in acts of civil disobedience  attempting to shut down financial centers, tie up traffic, fill subways, protest in large banks, and march across bridges and landmarks such as the Brooklyn Bridge. Hundreds were arrested by police including a retired Philadelphia Police Captain and a  New York City Council member. I will also be posting a slightly belated article on events correlated to the ‘Day of Action’ that took place in Amherst on Thursday.
  •  In a letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), banking lobbyists reveal their desire to derail the ‘Occupy movement’ and help defeat any Democrats that might sympathize with their calls to reign in the power of large financial institutions that many blame for the 2008 meltdown. They also express fear of a populist alliance between the ‘Occupy’ movement and the ‘Tea Party’ that could be detrimental to them.
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