That's like saying Texas "leans" Republican. But, according to The Cook Political Report, that's how the state is playing out right now in the Senate special election:
At this point, we suspect that the race has indeed closed somewhat and that the result will probably be closer than it ought to be, but we continue to believe that Brown has a very uphill struggle in his quest to pull off a Massachusetts Miracle. At the same time, we have a well-earned appreciation for how unpredictable special elections can be even in states or congressional districts that sit solidly in one party's camp or the other.
The levels of the playing field as defined by Cook are interesting:
Solid: These races are not considered competitive and are not likely to become closely contested
Likely: These seats are not considered competitive at this point but have the potential to become engaged.
Lean: These are considered competitive races but one party has an advantage.
Toss Up: These are the most competitive races; either party has a good chance of winning.
So Blue Mass is now inches away from being a toss-up...well, were told the election of Barack Obama signified an electoral realignment; seems like that was correct. Folks were just wrong about which direction the shift was heading.
And if this is correct -
In fact, among those who are absolutely certain they will vote, Brown pulls to within two points of Coakley...
...and is borne out in another poll, Massachusetts will have to moved to the "toss-up" column.
And that, my friends, is hope and change I finally can f*ckin' believe in!