Shannon, Stein and a tightening race
: So tracking polls now apparently show (though Hub Blog hasn't seen them) the gubernatorial race to be a virtual tie between Shannon O’Brien and Mitt Romney. Only a week or so ago, it seemed Romney was doomed. Now, judging by all the patter around town, it’s O’Brien who looks doomed. Hub Blog ain’t buying it. There’s still one more debate on Tuesday, this time one-on-one, and Shannon is better than Mitt in these type of scrappy confrontations. There’s still plenty of time for Shannon to halt the slide -- and for Mitt to blow it (again). Still, there’s trouble brewing for Shannon ...
... Eileen McNamara
and Margery Eagan
both have columns expressing deep disappointment with O’Brien. Eileen: “If Massachusetts voters elect Romney, O'Brien will be more responsible than Stein, a physician and Harvard Medical School professor from Lexington who entered this race to raise the issues, not to play the spoiler, the name applied to any third party candidate who challenges the status quo.” (Can’t you just hear suburban liberals’ hearts go pitter-patter when reciting Green candidate Jill Stein’s resume and home town?) Margery: “Oh, Shannon, if you're going down in flames, go with guts. Don't lose because you've turned into plodding, hyper-cautious mush.” (Margery is no convert to Jill Stein, as you can imagine.) The significance of these columns is twofold: They identify growing progressive dissatisfaction with O’Brien, and, more importantly, growing female dissatisfaction with O’Brien. Then there are the ...
... Independent voters, who have decided the last three gubernatorial races. The Globe’s Joanna Weiss
has an excellent overview piece on those elusive Independents, and White does a terrific job capturing the complexity of the Massachusetts electorate, beyond the liberal stereotype of Massachusetts. The Phoenix’s Seth Gitell
has been way out front in covering the crucial Independent vote. His latest conclusion: O’Brien may be blowing it when it comes to wooing them. Unfortunately, the one issue in which O’Brien has admirably stuck her neck out on -- i.e. supporting gay marriages (sort of) -- may end up hurting her, Gitell notes. ...
... Meanwhile, the Globe has endorsed O’Brien
. I doubt newspaper endorsements mean much, but many friends insist a lot of voters do take their cues from Globe endorsements, so ... Jeff Jacoby
sings the praise of Question 1, the anti-income tax measure on the November ballot. Jeff takes the “small government is better” approach towards the measure. Hub Blog thinks the vast majority of its support springs from cynicism, not necessarily from an anti-tax backlash or desire for smaller government. Still, one can’t help wonder how the question will fare next Tuesday.