Topics
Administration
Congress
Democrats
Elections
Ethics
Governor -- Alabama
Governor -- Alaska
Governor -- Arizona
Governor -- California
Governor -- Colorado
Governor -- Connecticut
Governor -- Delaware
Governor -- Florida
Governor -- Georgia
Governor -- Hawaii
Governor -- Illinois
Governor -- Indiana
Governor -- Iowa
Governor -- Kentucky
Governor -- Louisiana
Governor -- Maryland
Governor -- Massachusetts
Governor -- Michigan
Governor -- Minnesota
Governor -- Missouri
Governor -- Montana
Governor -- Nevada
Governor -- New Hampshire
Governor -- New Jersey
Governor -- New Mexico
Governor -- New York
Governor -- North Carolina
Governor -- North Dakota
Governor -- Ohio
Governor -- Oregon
Governor -- Pennsylvania
Governor -- Rhode Island
Governor -- South Carolina
Governor -- Texas
Governor -- Utah
Governor -- Vermont
Governor -- Virginia
Governor -- Washington
Governor -- Wyoming
Governors
Health Care
House
House -- Alabama -- 02
House -- Alabama -- 03
House -- Alabama -- 05
House -- Alaska
House -- Arizona -- 01
House -- Arizona -- 03
House -- Arizona -- 05
House -- Arizona -- 08
House -- Arkansas -- 01
House -- Arkansas -- 02
House -- California -- 04
House -- California -- 12
House -- California -- 26
House -- California -- 32
House -- California -- 50
House -- Colorado -- 02
House -- Colorado -- 04
House -- Connecticut -- 04
House -- Connecticut -- 05
House -- Florida -- 06
House -- Florida -- 08
House -- Florida -- 13
House -- Florida -- 15
House -- Florida -- 16
House -- Florida -- 18
House -- Florida -- 19
House -- Florida -- 21
House -- Florida -- 24
House -- Florida -- 25
House -- Georgia -- 05
House -- Georgia -- 10
House -- Georgia -- 12
House -- Idaho -- 01
House -- Illinois -- 01
House -- Illinois -- 03
House -- Illinois -- 05
House -- Illinois -- 06
House -- Illinois -- 10
House -- Illinois -- 11
House -- Illinois -- 14
House -- Illinois -- 18
House -- Indiana -- 03
House -- Indiana -- 07
House -- Indiana -- 09
House -- Iowa -- 03
House -- Iowa -- 04
House -- Kansas -- 02
House -- Kentucky -- 02
House -- Kentucky -- 03
House -- Louisiana -- 01
House -- Louisiana -- 02
House -- Louisiana -- 04
House -- Louisiana -- 06
House -- Maine -- 01
House -- Maryland -- 01
House -- Maryland -- 04
House -- Massachusetts -- 05
House -- Michigan -- 01
House -- Michigan -- 07
House -- Michigan -- 09
House -- Michigan -- 13
House -- Minnesota -- 01
House -- Minnesota -- 03
House -- Minnesota -- 06
House -- Mississippi -- 01
House -- Mississippi -- 03
House -- Missouri -- 09
House -- Nevada -- 02
House -- Nevada -- 03
House -- New Hampshire -- 01
House -- New Hampshire -- 02
House -- New Jersey -- 03
House -- New Jersey -- 05
House -- New Jersey -- 07
House -- New Mexico -- 01
House -- New Mexico -- 02
House -- New York -- 13
House -- New York -- 15
House -- New York -- 20
House -- New York -- 21
House -- New York -- 23
House -- New York -- 24
House -- New York -- 25
House -- New York -- 26
House -- New York -- 29
House -- North Carolina -- 03
House -- North Carolina -- 08
House -- North Carolina -- 10
House -- North Dakota
House -- Ohio -- 01
House -- Ohio -- 02
House -- Ohio -- 05
House -- Ohio -- 07
House -- Ohio -- 10
House -- Ohio -- 15
House -- Ohio -- 16
House -- Oklahoma -- 05
House -- Oregon -- 05
House -- Pennsylvania -- 03
House -- Pennsylvania -- 04
House -- Pennsylvania -- 06
House -- Pennsylvania -- 10
House -- Pennsylvania -- 11
House -- Pennsylvania -- 12
House -- Pennsylvania -- 15
House -- South Carolina -- 01
House -- South Carolina -- 02
House -- South Carolina -- 05
House -- South Dakota
House -- Tennessee -- 07
House -- Tennessee -- 08
House -- Tennessee -- 09
House -- Texas -- 07
House -- Texas -- 10
House -- Texas -- 14
House -- Texas -- 22
House -- Utah -- 03
House -- Virginia -- 01
House -- Virginia -- 05
House -- Virginia -- 09
House -- Virginia -- 11
House -- Washington -- 08
House -- West Virginia -- 02
House -- Wisconsin -- 08
House -- Wyoming
Inauguration 2009
International
Issues
Judiciary
Local Elections
Media
Miscellaneous
Morning Thoughts
Politics Weekly
Polls
Rankings
Republicans
Senate
Senate -- Alaska
Senate -- Arizona
Senate -- Arkansas
Senate -- California
Senate -- Colorado
Senate -- Connecticut
Senate -- Delaware
Senate -- Florida
Senate -- Georgia
Senate -- Idaho
Senate -- Illinois
Senate -- Indiana
Senate -- Iowa
Senate -- Kansas
Senate -- Kentucky
Senate -- Louisiana
Senate -- Maine
Senate -- Massachusetts
Senate -- Minnesota
Senate -- Mississippi
Senate -- Missouri
Senate -- Montana
Senate -- Nebraska
Senate -- Nevada
Senate -- New Hampshire
Senate -- New Jersey
Senate -- New Mexico
Senate -- New York
Senate -- North Carolina
Senate -- North Dakota
Senate -- Ohio
Senate -- Oklahoma
Senate -- Oregon
Senate -- Pennsylvania
Senate -- South Carolina
Senate -- South Dakota
Senate -- Tennessee
Senate -- Texas
Senate -- Utah
Senate -- Virginia
Senate -- Wisconsin
Senate -- Wyoming
Sports
Supreme Court
WH 08
WH 08 -- Democrats
WH 08 -- Republicans
WH 12
WH 12 -- Republicans
White House

RealClearPolitics Politics Nation Blog

 

Blog Home Page --> Governor -- Massachusetts

Senate Race A Warning For Patrick

Do you think Deval Patrick is feeling the heat after Scott Brown's victory on Tuesday?

"Be angry -- but channel it in a positive direction," the Massachusetts governor told lawmakers and, more importantly, voters in his state of the Commonwealth address last night. "It's easy to be against things. It takes tough-mindedness and political courage to be for something," he said.

Brown's historic upset in Tuesday's special election for U.S. Senate is being seen as a harbinger of things to come for officeholders, particularly Democrats, across the country. But arguably nowhere is that outcome more significant than in the Bay State, where the party has near-total control of state government. And the tone of Patrick's speech Thursday, coming so soon after Martha Coakley's humbling defeat, reflected the political predicament he's in.

Patrick was elected with a substantial margin in 2006, ending a long streak of Republican control of the governor's office in Massachusetts. The themes he ran on in that campaign presaged ones that led to Barack Obama's historic election two years later. The two men shared some common traits, and also some of the same campaign advisers. But the goodwill that saw Patrick into office was quickly replaced by skepticism over his leadership, to the point where he was considered one of the more vulnerable incumbents in the country even before Tuesday's result.

"What happened on Tuesday - I don't know if it makes it worse for him or not - but it sure highlights what we already believed, which was that he's in trouble," said Tim Murtaugh, spokesman for the Republican Governors Association.

With an approval rating of just 41 percent in the most recent Boston Globe/UNH survey, some even speculate that the well of dissatisfaction that Brown tapped in to was in part Patrick's doing. As one of the statewide elected officials elected with the governor in 2006, Coakley was held responsible for the voters' unhappiness with the course of the state.

Though Patrick's woes resemble that of many other governors across the country, his numbers are among the weakest of those planning to seek re-election. Still, his ties to the White House and the fact that his road to office mirrors that of the president are among the reasons why administration officials have not overtly sought to push him aside like they have in other states. David Plouffe, Obama's campaign manager in 2008, is advising Patrick in his re-election bid.

Two Republicans have lined up to challenge Patrick: Christy Mihos, a businessman who ran as an independent in 2006, and Charlie Baker, the former CEO of Harvard Pilgrim insurance company. Baker is considered the favorite of state and national Republicans, and has raised considerable funds already. He's also tapped into the enthusiasm for Brown in recent weeks and will be following his successful playbook in the months ahead.

"I think Scott won because he was talking about what people were worried about: jobs and spending and taxes and their ability to pay the bills that they're racking up on Beacon Hill and Capitol Hill,'' Baker told the Boston Globe this week. "I think that's a reasonably consistent message that I've been talking about, as well.''

Patrick's one saving grace at this point is that he faces not just a strong Republican opponent, but a third challenger in Tim Cahill, the state treasurer and a former Democrat. Early polling has shown Patrick ahead, but only because the anti-incumbent vote has been split among Baker and Cahill.

Fundraising Portends Competitive Governor's Races

New fundraising reports in Florida, Massachusetts and Wisconsin indicate what should be competitive governor's races come November. GOP challengers in Florida, where Gov. Charlie Crist (R) is running for Senate, and Massachusetts, where Gov. Deval Patrick (D) is running for re-election, reported strong fundraising totals as of the end of the year, while a Democrat in Wisconsin appears fit to keep the state blue.

The news in Massachusetts caught many by surprise, including Patrick, whose Republican opponent Charles Baker doubled Patrick's fundraising for all of 2009 in less than six months. Patrick had even welcomed President Obama last year for a fundraiser. Now, already facing dipping approval ratings, Patrick is in for an extremely difficult re-election.

The governor, an outspoken proponent for Obama's 2008 campaign -- which shattered fundraising records -- dismissed his challenger's impressive haul, saying: "This campaign is not about money. If it is about money, then we are just going to go back to same old, same old on Beacon Hill."

In Florida, Attorney General Bill McCollum is catching up to Democrat Alex Sink after a strong fundraising quarter to end the year. He raised $1.4 million to Sink's $1.1 million. Sink still likely holds a controlling lead in cash on hand, however.

McCollum also received good news yesterday when Crist shot down a rumor that he would be running for re-election instead of for Senate.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) is showing he has what it takes to succeed outgoing Democrat Jim Doyle, despite his relatively late start to the race. Barrett, a former congressman who was recruited to the race by the White House, announced raising $750,000 in just seven weeks, giving him $1.5 million in the bank.

Neither of Barrett's Republican rivals, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker or former congressman Mark Neumann, have announced their totals yet.

Patrick Support Declines As He Appoints Interim Senator

There is now supporting data for those concerned about the political repercussions of Gov. Deval Patrick's (D) push for a law change giving him the power to appoint an interim senator.

A new survey by Suffolk University, released the same day Patrick appointed Paul Kirk to the open Senate seat, finds 45% of voters have an unfavorable opinion of Patrick, while just 42% view him favorably (Sept. 12-15, 500 RV, MoE +/- 4.4%). He has a similar 42% job approval rating, with 49% disapproving. Just 29% say he deserves to be re-elected; 56% say it's time to elect someone else.

Still, there are no signs that the state is hankering for a change in party control. Asked whether it's time for a Republican governor, 54% said no and 35% said yes. And Patrick outperforms potential GOP and independent challengers: Charlie Baker (R), the former Harvard Pilgrim CEO; Christy Mihos (R), a businessman; and State Treas. Tim Cahill, an independent.

Patrick 36 - Baker 14 - Cahill 23 - Und 26

Patrick 36 - Mihos 17 - Cahill 24 - Und 23

MA Gov Poll: Patrick Losing Ground

Another poll gives Massachusetts Democrats reason for concern about the gubernatorial race next year. A Rasmussen survey pitting Gov. Deval Patrick (D) losing ground in head-to-head matchups with potential Republican opponents.

General Election Matchups
Mihos 40 (-1 from 6/24)
Patrick 35 (-5)
Other 11 (+1)
Not Sure 15 (+6)

Patrick 40 (-1)
Baker 39 (+3)
Other 7 (-5)
Not Sure 15 (+4)

Of course, there is still a potential third-party candidacy from former Democrat and current state Treasurer Tim Cahill. His entry would certainly shake up these numbers.

Fav/Unfav Ratings
Patrick 40 / 56
Mihos 50 / 30
Baker 40 / 30

Patrick has a job approval rating of 39 percent, while 60 percent disapprove. President Obama's approval rating is nearly the reverse at this point: 59 percent approve, 41 percent disapprove.

Rasmussen also asked voters whether Patrick should have the right, as Sen. Ted Kennedy has requested, to appoint an interim replacement in the Senate should a vacancy occur. Only 52 percent said yes, while 40 percent said no. Sixty-six percent still support having a special election to permanently fill any vacancy, as opposed to 27 percent who think the governor should fill it.

The IVR survey of 500 likely Massachusetts voters was conducted on August 20, and had a margin of error of +/- 4.5 percent.

MA Gov Poll: Patrick Faces Uphill Fight

A new survey conducted by Opinion Dynamics for MassInsight confirms that Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) faces a steep climb in his bid for re-election in 2012.

General Election Matchup (w/leaners)
Cahill (I) 27
Patrick (D) 25
Baker (R) 23
Don't Know 24

Cahill (I) 29
Patrick (D) 27
Mihos (R) 21
Don't Know 24

State Treasurer Tim Cahill has switched from Democrat to independent with most expecting he will run for governor. But without Cahill in the race, Patrick would then trail one potential Republican candidate, former Harvard Pilgrim CEO Charlie Baker, 42-36, with 22 percent undecided.

The poll also found that Patrick's approval rating is perilously low, with 19 percent giving him a positive rating compared to 77 percent who disapprove of his performance. The survey of 445 registered voters was conducted from July 31 to August 3.

You can expect this race to get a lot of attention because in 2006, Patrick in many ways tested the themes that were central to President Obama's 2008 campaign. Obama's campaign manager, David Plouffe, is an adviser to Patrick's re-election bid.