Scott Rasmussen just told the Boston Fox affiliate that Democrat Martha Coakley has a relatively narrow lead of 50-41 percent over GOP state senator Scott Brown.
A Republican win in Massachusetts is still a longshot, but these numbers are in the range of the possible....
9% down, with three weeks to go? Longshot indeed, but not impossible. How motivated are those 50%, as opposed to the 41%? And how much can some money and attention focus the Massachusetts voters on the issues at hand and how it will affect their lives, and perhaps divert them from their instinctive Democratic voting habits?
Not sure; it seems like a big task. But it seems important to at least do our job - "our" meaning bloggers, citizens, and the RNC (I won't even waste my breath on the media) - to highlight the differences between these two candidates, and to outline what the election of one or the other might mean for the state of Massachusetts, and the nation at large.
You know who Coakley reminds me a bit of? Al Franken. A liberal no-nothing, a partisan hack, a representative that brings neither representation or intelligence to the debate, but is merely a foot soldier in the Left's larger cause. How do you think the voters of Minnesota feel about their choice now?
And is that who the voters of Massachusetts want to elect? Let's make sure, at least, they know what they're doing and can be held fully responsible for their actions when they pull the lever...
UPDATE: More from Legal Insurrection:
Coakley should have had at least a mid-teens lead at this point.But as I have noted, Coakley's tactic of acting like the election already is over may be backfiring. While Brown was hitting the pavement the past three weeks, Coakley took a six day vacation. Wrong message. Coakley is ducking a one-on-one debate with Brown. Wrong message.
The Weekly Standard:
THE WEEKLY STANDARD has also learned that an earlier poll, done in mid-December by another firm for another client, had similar results in the ballot test--but that the poll also found that the race tightened significantly, down to a low single digits margin for Coakley, among those judged most likely to vote. Furthermore, a careful analysis by Sean Trende shows, that if one assumes a swing against the Democrats like that in New Jersey and Virginia two months ago, the race could become very close.
Brian Maloney talks of Jim Geraghty's (of NRO's "Campaign Spot") pessimism, and tries to dispel it:
In further analysis, Geraghty publishes a note from a reader who sees Plymouth County as key to a Brown victory, but wonders how voters there could be motivated to visit polling places. Missing here is the fact that a very unpopular meals tax increase is also on the ballot in the town of Plymouth.
I've got three words for you:
"Remember New Jersey!"
UPDATE II: Rasmussen:
Special elections are typically decided by who shows up to vote and it is clear from the data that Brown’s supporters are more enthusiastic. In fact, among those who are absolutely certain they will vote, Brown pulls to within two points of Coakley. That suggests a very low turnout will help the Republican and a higher turnout is better for the Democrat.
In 2006, Massachusetts implemented its own statewide version of health care reform which has been cited as a model for the national plan. But just 32% of the state’s voters consider that reform a success. Thirty-six percent (36%) consider the plan a failure, and another 32% are not sure.