Dems ‘complacency’ endangers 60th health-care vote

By WND Staff

NEW YORK – Top-tier Democrats, including President Obama, are expected to flood into Massachusetts in the last few days before next week’s special election to fill the U.S. Senate seat held by the late Ted Kennedy.

Analysts say complacency by Democrats, who have held the seat since John F. Kennedy’s tenure in the 1950s, has allowed GOP challenger Scott Brown to turn a presumed rout into a dead heat.

Brown has capitalized on fierce opposition to the Democrats’ health care plan and a stalled U.S. economy to close a double-digit gap to what local polls now show to be an even race with state Attorney General Martha Coakley.

Coakley, regarded as the Kennedy “heir apparent,” told the Boston Globe, “I don’t know what is going to happen on January 19.”

The vulnerability of Coakley was highlighted earlier this week during a meeting of New York state GOP leaders and other Republican heavyweights in New York City.

New York state GOP chairman Ed Cox confirmed his organization and several other state GOP committees will descend on Massachusetts this weekend to support Brown.

Cox told the New York meeting that the GOP “had a real chance” to upset Coakley.

“We will be providing transportation to supporters who want to campaign for Brown,” Cox explained.

That support will come in the form of workers staffing telephone banks, rallies and providing transportation to polling stations.

“It’s a crucial seat. It could be the 60th seat,” said the GOP state chairman, referring to the 60th super majority seat Democrats could use to kill any filibusters contemplated by Hill Republicans. The could become critical if the GOP wishes to have any impact on the health care plan passed by the House and Senate that now must be reconciled by the two chambers.

A campaign ad in support of Brown casts the race as a choice between liberty and tyranny, tying it to the dilemma American colonists faced in 1776.

See the ad:

Brown drew attention in his debate with Coakley Monday night when he responded to a question from moderator David Gergen that referred to the “Kennedy seat.”

“With all due respect, it’s not the Kennedy’s seat, it’s not the Democrats’ seat, it’s the people’s seat,” Brown replied.

The Globe, calling the race “too competitive to call,” said it may take a month to certify the results.

A new Rasmussen Report today put the race at 49 percent for Coakley and 47 percent for Brown, with 3 percent for independent candidate Joe Kennedy.

It revealed while Coakley has Democrat vote and Brown the GOP, more than two-thirds of unaffiliated voters who are likely to participate go for Brown.

“Leaners are those who don’t initially have a preference for one of the major candidates but indicate that they are leaning in that direction. Without ‘leaners,’ Brown was actually ahead by a single percentage point,” the report said.

Both parties are expected to pour party heavyweights into Massachusetts in the days before the election, and although it isn’t confirmed, the White House is expected to send Obama.

For Republicans, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Arizona Sen. John McCain and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin may lend their support in the final days before the vote.

In Massachusetts, independents outnumber both Democrats and Republicans.