Suffolk poll shows Brown up 9 over Warren in MA Senate race; Update: Brown op-ed supports Blunt bill on religious exemption from mandate

posted at 9:15 am on February 17, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

It’s early for significant polling in any Senate race, but this result from Suffolk University’s poll is an eye-opener.  Despite having won a special election two years ago, most people considered Republican Scott Brown a long shot to win his next election in deeply-blue Massachusetts, especially up against Elizabeth Warren.  Instead, Brown starts off the race up by nine over the Democrat:

Republican Scott Brown (49 percent) has a 9-point lead over Democrat Elizabeth Warren (40 percent), according to a Suffolk University/7NEWS (WHDH-Boston) poll of likely general election voters in Massachusetts. Nine percent were undecided, and 2 percent would choose someone else.

Brown also showed significant leads over two other potential Democratic candidates, besting Marisa DeFranco 55 percent to 22 percent and Jim King 57 percent to 21 percent.

“Scott Brown’s popularity and appeal are overpowering the efforts of Elizabeth Warren, who struggles to introduce herself to the larger pool of Massachusetts voters,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. “Warren’s support does not have traction among independents.”

Massachusetts may vote strongly Democratic — all ten of its House seats are held by Democrats at the moment — but its electorate is mostly unaffiliated, with almost 52% being independent.  Brown has a 32-point lead among independents in this poll, 60/28.  Also, 60% of the overall electorate sees a benefit in having one Senator from each party as a more balanced representation in Washington, with only 36% disagreeing. Warren has to overcome both of those hurdles to gain on Brown, and she’s not likely to do either by pandering to the Occupy movement or mouthing their rhetoric.

Even with these results, it’s clear that Warren gives Democrats their best chance of beating Brown.  The other two candidates in the Democratic primary allow Brown to get solid majorities in a general-election matchup.  That’s not entirely a straight-up comparison, as support for the eventual nominee will coalesce once he or she has been chosen, but Brown’s 49% against Warren is an indicator that it will be tough to unseat him.

It’s very early in this race, and no one will remember this poll even by summer, let alone the fall.  Still, it’s interesting and somewhat cheering to see Brown in the driver’s seat at the beginning of the process.

Update: I know conservatives are hardly satisfied with Scott Brown, but I’m pretty sure that Martha Coakley wouldn’t have written this op-ed in today’s Boston Herald:

Republicans and Democrats don’t come together nearly enough these days, and when we do it’s usually because of something we all recognize as clearly out of line. It takes a really bad idea to reveal our shared convictions on issues bigger than politics. That is the case with the new mandate from the Obama administration requiring religious organizations to offer insurance coverage for practices that go against the teachings of their church, violate the tenets of their faith and step on their constitutional protections.

Basically the government is saying, “Just do what you’re told, and leave the moral questions to us.” This runs against religious liberty, the Constitution, the consciences of millions of Americans and the independent spirit of Massachusetts. We don’t take well to imperious commands from Washington, and if we meekly submit to this mandate, you can be sure that a lot more will follow. …

This latest mandate under government-controlled health care is one reason why I campaigned and voted against Obamacare in the first place. It operates by broad dictation from Washington, showing no respect for the judgment, needs or rights of individual Americans and the states. And it opens the door to endless abuses of power such as this latest mandate.

This is why I strongly support a bipartisan bill in the Senate that provides a conscience exemption from the Obamacare mandate. In effect, the bill would simply restore the relevant laws on conscience protection that existed before Obamacare removed them.

That’s probably a pretty bold statement in Massachusetts, although it really shouldn’t be.


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This is great news! Warren is the most dangerous socialist demagogue in America today.
thuja on February 17, 2012 at 9:31 AM

Barack Obama has passed away? I didn’t get the memo. No, that distinction belongs to Barry Soetoro alone and no moonbat Harvard professor will be taking that mantle away any time soon.

As to Brown, say what you will about his moderate to liberal voting record, he has an “R” next to his name and the effects of that cannot be understated when the balance of power begins to tilt back to the right. His mere presence on this side of the aisle adds to the prospect of a majority and all of the benefits that come from that. His election could quite possibly allow much more conservative members of the Senate to chair committees, etc.

And did I mention that Warren is a howling moonbat? OK, good.

turfmann on February 17, 2012 at 11:25 AM

This is the reason people are deeply discomfited by ultra-religious political types. Your priorities are so disordered and disturbing that we begin to think that you care about us less as human beings with lives and families and careers and economic interests in the balance, and more as abstracted thoughts.

Esoteric on February 17, 2012 at 11:05 AM

You assume too much. You know nothing about what I support and am involved in during my daily life and frankly it’s none of your business.

Logus on February 17, 2012 at 11:26 AM

NFW ! Brown could win this thing ?? Maybe OWS was really all media smoke and mirrors.
Dead cat.

FlaMurph on February 17, 2012 at 11:10 AM

It’s been media wishcasting on Warren, but the more she talks the more MA knows her. Brown has a lock on independents and, 51% of the MA voters are unenrolled! Last time Brown got something like 60% of them over Croakley. He will get close to 100% of Republicans, and a chunk of Democrats too. It won’t be a blowout but I believe he will win. Here is the landscape Warren is dealing with -

Brown vs. Croakley 2010

roy_batty on February 17, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Maybe my mother was right. She said I should either be a preacher or a politician.

Logus on February 17, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Did she ever use the words pithy or succinct that you recall?

;-)

roy_batty on February 17, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Brown is useless, even counterproductive in legislation but has done terrific damage to the D-Rats simply by existing in “Ted Kennedy’s seat”. This is a different scenario than say nominating Romney or electing Governor Ahnold.

The damage to the credibility of Obama, the media and the elite D’s has been brutal and humiliating, the equivalent of the Goths squatting in Rome. If the closet-communist 99%-humping phony Warren loses, the damage to their credibility will be incalculable; the emperor will be butt-ass naked and they will have overreached with a far-left candidate for nothing. Brown himself sucks, but if you want to hurt the donks badly, keep him firmly in there for now.

smiley on February 17, 2012 at 11:41 AM

Scott Brown is praying that Romney gets nomination.
He will lose if Rick Sanctimonious is at top of ticket in secular Mass.
kevinkristy on February 17, 2012 at 9:31 AM

Willard does nothing for Brownie in MA.

The microscopic RINO elites who love Planned Parenthood and yearn for eugenics are notalgic for the days when they combated “Rum, Romanism and Rebellion” and yearn for eugenics. They motivate nobody in MA.

kingsmill on February 17, 2012 at 11:50 AM

I don’t think Sen. Brown is any more annoying than the Maine twins or Sen. McCain when he has one of his mavericky spells.

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 11:51 AM

but I’m pretty sure that Martha Coakley wouldn’t have written this op-ed in today’s Boston Herald:

who’s that broad????
/Kennedy

ted c on February 17, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Sad but true that Scott is the best “conservative” we in the Bay State have to offer, folks. Just heard on the local radio station that voters here prefer to have one Dem and one Repub to represent us, and that Scott leads Warren among Indies by a large margin. I haven’t been happy with all of his votes, to say the least, but if he votes the right way the majority of the time, it beats the alternative.

4Freedom on February 17, 2012 at 12:16 PM

Brown is a RINO traitor.

We’d be better off if he loses.

Strengthens True Conservative purity.

Pablo Honey on February 17, 2012 at 12:22 PM

An “independent” in Massachusetts is someone who votes for the communist on the ballot. Warren qualifies.

Scott Brown sucks. He was elected to be the 41st vote against Obamacare. So much for that. He’s of no further use to me.

SAMinVA on February 17, 2012 at 12:28 PM

Thanks to everybody for taking cheap shots at all of us here in Mass., you guys are great.

I’ve been at hotair since day 1, and a regular reader of mm since day 1 as well. I’m a fiscal conservative just as much as anybody else is.

I love living in Mass, but hate the 1 party rule we have on Bacon Hill. I vote regularly in elections. All things considered, I wouldn’t want to live in any other state unless forced to.

I’ve been fortunate to live in other parts of this great country, and sorry folks, but Boston is the best city for me. Did I mention that we have 7 championship trophies since 2001? Oh yeah, and NY has 3.

I voted for Senator Brown 2 years ago, and I’m damn sure I’m going to vote for him again in November. No, I don’t like all of his votes, some of them I really hate (esp Dodd-Frank).

Last time I checked, he votes with the GOP 75% of the time. Senator Kerry votes with Harry 96%. I’m sure Warren will go with Harry 100%. That’s all the reason I need to make my decision.

So go ahead and keep making fun of us, as if 100% of Mass residents are far left idiots. It’s ok, I know the attacks are coming from ignorance and that doesn’t bother me. I still love you guys, and hotair.

BROWN 2012!

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Even though Brown is a RINO, I just CAN’T STAND WARREN.

DuctTapeMyBrain on February 17, 2012 at 12:38 PM

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Don’t take it personally, you live in an area rich with the birth of our nation’s history, you deserve to be proud. It’s always hard to hear stuff about home, change comes slowly if at all and I appreciate you sticking it out.

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 12:44 PM

Thanks to everybody for taking cheap shots at all of us here in Mass., you guys are great.

You are right. We make fun of MA they way libs make fun of the south. It makes them look bad when they do it, so maybe we should think about that.

earlgrey133 on February 17, 2012 at 12:44 PM

Brown is barely right of center, but Warren is terrifying.

therightwinger on February 17, 2012 at 12:46 PM

She is Nurse Kratchet.

jake-the-goose on February 17, 2012 at 9:18 AM

..without the drugs.

The War Planner on February 17, 2012 at 12:50 PM

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 12:44 PM

..THE definition of a “classy lady”. I like your style.

The War Planner on February 17, 2012 at 12:52 PM

earlgrey133 on February 17, 2012 at 12:44 PM

That’s an excellent point but I don’t think it will change, we all just need tougher skin.

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 12:52 PM

The War Planner on February 17, 2012 at 12:52 PM

You are too kind.

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 12:53 PM

And when Brown gets reelected he will take it all back and say he was kidding.

Better than Warren perhaps. But only by inches. Brown, Collins and Snowe are the political equivalent of the Three Stooges.

Marcus Traianus on February 17, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Brown is sellout, but Warren would vote against you 100% of the time and be the left’s chief spokesperson for Marxism/Occupy. Just make sure you do your job on election day.

The Count on February 17, 2012 at 9:25 AM

..understand your point but one could argue that he was elected to represent the interests of his constituents (it’s the senate, I know, I know..) in a blue state and to do otherwise would break faith with them. How many of you out there have had a Senator or rep go against the wishes of you and those in your state or district? Raise your hands.

..one..two..three..

The War Planner on February 17, 2012 at 12:59 PM

Massachusetts may traditionally support Democrats but it is full of Irish and Italian Catholic communities who may not obey all the rules but are deeply attached to their church. The contraception coercion may have shaken them out of their comfort zone. They will perceive an attack on the church as an attack on them. And if 60% of voters see a benefit in having one GOP senator that is a sea change in Massachusetts politics. And if this is happening in MA it is happening everywhere.

breffnian on February 17, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Warren used to be a frequent guest on CNBC during the banking crisis, and put on her best face then – but her statist views were fairly transparent. She’s now showing herself to be the same old dried-up angry elitist leftist that she has always been. Oh yeah, and very wealthy member of the 1%.

MikeinPRCA on February 17, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 12:44 PM

Thank you Cindy.

My theory is that Ma. is starting to come back to reality, but it’s a very slow process. Didn’t McSame get almost 40% of the vote back in 2008?

My own family provides a good example of how we got to the crazy place that this state has been politically. My parents and sister get news from 2 places. The Boston Globe, and on tv it’s NBC. Needless to say I regularly hear the crazy, like when my sister said 3.5 years ago “I can’t stand Sarah Palin”. I asked why. Because she read some stories about how crazy Palin is, in the Boston Globe.

As the Globe decline continues, and as more and more people look to new sources for news, slowly but surely I think they are coming around.

Hopefully it won’t be too many years before they realize that this whole idea of 2 parties is a pretty good idea, as they serve as a check and balance to each other.

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 2:15 PM

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

I hear you, brother. Although it’s GOPish around here in south-central PA, the state is blue more often than not. Just south of the Mason-Dixon line is Maryland, even more true blue. But these states are my home and I can’t imagine living anywhere else.

thebrokenrattle on February 17, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Follow-up question for Scott Brown regarding his stance on the HHS mandate:

“Is your finger still wet from when you stuck it in the air to decide what position to take?”

mdavt on February 17, 2012 at 2:41 PM

I love living in Mass, but hate the 1 party rule we have on Bacon Hill. I vote regularly in elections. All things considered, I wouldn’t want to live in any other state unless forced to.

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Sums up my attitude perfectly.

As easy as it would be to head north to NH, I will not give up another inch of ground. I am staying, I’ve had enough, it is worth fighting for even if only incremental gain.

roy_batty on February 17, 2012 at 2:58 PM

Ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings. But, none deserve more to lose than the hypocritical rich lady, who claims not to be.

Schadenfreude on February 17, 2012 at 3:02 PM

Harry Reid would be irrelevant now if we had actual Senate candidates in Nevada and Deleware instead of inept clown acts.

I guess that is being pragmatic, but being wacky doesn’t seem to be a better alternative.

NoDonkey on February 17, 2012 at 9:38 AM

I agree that the two were NOT good candidates and the Tea Party could have/should have done better, but this is Harry Reid and there was no way that the DNC was going to let that seat go.

COD could have won if people like Rove didn’t go and eviscerate her on TV. The RNC should have been behind her with their full support.

Isn’t that one of the major complaints? They give us underwhelming candidates and we’re expected like good children to hold our noses and vote yet when the *people* make a contrary decision in the primary they do absolutely nothing to help them win.

No, she wasn’t a great candidate, but then neither was Coons and the ****RNC**** and it’s machine should have been able to crush him. She was an excellent example of what happens when you don’t follow the party line.

kim roy on February 17, 2012 at 3:32 PM

There’s a big signature drive for Sen. Brown tomorrow. I’ll be out there with my clipboard…

Just Sayin on February 17, 2012 at 3:39 PM

Thanks to everybody for taking cheap shots at all of us here in Mass., you guys are great.

I’ve been at hotair since day 1, and a regular reader of mm since day 1 as well. I’m a fiscal conservative just as much as anybody else is.

I love living in Mass, but hate the 1 party rule we have on Bacon Hill. I vote regularly in elections. All things considered, I wouldn’t want to live in any other state unless forced to.

I’ve been fortunate to live in other parts of this great country, and sorry folks, but Boston is the best city for me. Did I mention that we have 7 championship trophies since 2001? Oh yeah, and NY has 3.

I voted for Senator Brown 2 years ago, and I’m damn sure I’m going to vote for him again in November. No, I don’t like all of his votes, some of them I really hate (esp Dodd-Frank).

Last time I checked, he votes with the GOP 75% of the time. Senator Kerry votes with Harry 96%. I’m sure Warren will go with Harry 100%. That’s all the reason I need to make my decision.

So go ahead and keep making fun of us, as if 100% of Mass residents are far left idiots. It’s ok, I know the attacks are coming from ignorance and that doesn’t bother me. I still love you guys, and hotair.

BROWN 2012!

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

I know it’s easy to say, but don’t take it personally. In my opinion only, you are hearing comments from people who are frustrated and angry with what they see as a bunch of “elitists” and liberals with their heads in the sand saying and doing things that may eventually end up affecting them as well and having absolutely no power to do a darn thing about it.

I can appreciate your tenacity in staying and hope eventually that it rewards you, but personally I’d have left eons ago and would have felt nothing if it slid into the sea. Ted Kennedy?? I mean really, people. Obviously, I’m one of the frustrated as I keep seeing willful ignorance and just don’t understand why.

The comments you read might be from people like me, frustrated and angry, but not as polite as me to keep it to myself and not generalize that every single body there is a brain dead liberal.

I hope one day you are rewarded for your patience and obvious love for the area.

kim roy on February 17, 2012 at 3:43 PM

We shouldn’t need a bill from either chamber of Congress to protect religious freedoms already guaranteed by the Constitution.

On the issue of Scott Brown, he’s dead to all of the Tea Party folks I know, and I know plenty.

madmonkphotog on February 17, 2012 at 3:52 PM

On the issue of Scott Brown, he’s dead to all of the Tea Party folks I know, and I know plenty.

madmonkphotog on February 17, 2012 at 3:52 PM

Do you know plenty in MA?

roy_batty on February 17, 2012 at 4:17 PM

Most of the attacks on Massachusetts here are really aimed at the elitists in Cambridge, Newton, and Metro West. It’s a great state that’s brimming with American History. It’s a shame some parts have become so poisoned with progressivism. The Irish, the Italians, the blue collar workers, and the other Mass conservatives need to stick it out and turn the great state around. I feel the same about my state (Minnesota). It’s painfully blue but I certainly won’t surrender the north star state to the liberals.

Brown 2012!

letoile du nord on February 17, 2012 at 4:19 PM

We’ll take every (R) we can get!?!

Colatteral Damage on February 17, 2012 at 5:05 PM

kim roy on February 17, 2012 at 3:43 PM

I can’t remember. Did Massachusetts elect George McGovern or Teddy Kennedy Maximum Ruler for life?

I know that there is some sort of royalty thing up there.

The problem that Ms. Coakley has is that she reminds half of the state of the lady who has had the most spoiled, softest life on the planet but is obsessed with becoming a hero by complaining about everything. When you are that sheltered, everything looks unacceptable.

However, anyone who does not approve of the Republican nominee for any reason should stay home and disrespect any RINOs.

Look how well having Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader has served the cause of conservatism. Adding Coakley to Franken is a fine strategy, Napoleon.

I say Brown out!

IlikedAUH2O on February 17, 2012 at 6:14 PM

As horrible as it sounds, maybe this nation needs a bit more oppression. Maybe then they’ll realize what’s really important in life and focus on that first.

There is a reason why Christianity flourishes under and in many totalitarian regimes and countries. Persecution has an odd way of focusing people’s spiritual energy. But I digress…

Logus on February 17, 2012 at 10:57 AM

Okay, you’re a troll.

If not, you’re an evil (or sociopathic) person. You would actively wish pain and suffering upon us all “for our own good.”

Esoteric on February 17, 2012 at 11:02 AM

Esoteric, you needed to include more of Logus’s entry, or maybe you’re not Christian? It made sense to me…

Anyways, I’m living in SC but I’m registered in MA so I think I should vote in MA. Brown pisses me off but he is 10000000 x better than Warren so…

But MA sucks big time! The new head of the MassGop, you know who he contributed to?! Chuck Schumer. Politically I hate the state although the troops/candidates on the ground are good. Sean Bielat is running again, for Barney Frank’s spot (I refuse to say seat) in Congress. He is an excellent candidate.

Not surprisingly, the Archdiocese of Boston sucks too. It was a near occasion of sin for me to remain in that state.

So, I’ll vote for Brown (but not Romney). ABR, then ABO.

catquilt on February 17, 2012 at 6:43 PM

On the issue of Scott Brown, he’s dead to all of the Tea Party folks I know, and I know plenty.

madmonkphotog on February 17, 2012 at 3:52 PM

They will vote for him but probably not work hard for him. It may be enough.

http://dailycaller.com/2011/10/06/as-scott-brown-fights-for-re-election-tea-party-groups-vow-to-sit-this-one-out/

Cindy Munford on February 17, 2012 at 7:24 PM

warren (or non of her ilk) are the problem here. The problem are the screaming liberal morons who vote for such an atrocity. WHAT are they thinking? They are the product of our educational system which appears to be the root cause of the communist wave (what else can you call it?) that is sweeping the democratic (I used lower case letters because the dems do not deserve caps) party.

tractah on February 17, 2012 at 7:56 PM

If Warren wins Massachusetts, the rest of the country has to deal with her moonbattery. If Scott wins again, the conservative Republicans have to deal with his occasional defections from the party line. That’s just a no-brainer.

For those of us in Massachusetts, even those of us Tea Partyinng, pro-life conservatives, Scott Brown is great: he gets people used to voting and supporting a Republican. We’ve doubled the percentage of Republicans in our state legislature – to a mere 20% (and change). We can’t even hope to make this state more conservative until it’s not a one-party state with a veto-proof majority in both houses, and we can’t do that until people stop thinking that “Republican” and “Voldemort” are synonyms.

Roxeanne de Luca on February 17, 2012 at 11:54 PM

Pablo Honey on February 17, 2012 at 12:22 PM

Wrong dipshit. Conservatives hope he wins. Make sure you send him some money.

smoothsailing on February 18, 2012 at 2:53 AM

Here’s the boilerplate I got from My congressman:

Thank you for taking the time to contact me about insurance coverage of contraceptive care under the Affordable Care Act. I appreciate your input and concerns about this important subject.

As you may know, the Affordable Care Act of 2010 requires all new insurance plans to provide coverage for certain preventive care services without copayments. The Act directed the Department of Health and Human Services to conduct a study on what additional preventive services for women should be included in a list of essential benefits. In July, 2011, the Institute of Medicine issued a report to the Department recommending that contraceptives be covered as a preventive service without copayments.

In February 2012, the Department issued a final rule that follows the Institute of Medicine’s recommendation and requires employers to cover contraceptives free of charge starting in August 2012. Churches and other houses of worship will be exempt from the rule entirely. To address concerns of other religiously affiliated organizations that providing contraceptive services is contrary to their faith, the rule allows these employers to refrain from offering this benefit. Instead, insurance companies will cover the cost of providing contraceptive care to employees of religious institutions.

From the beginning, I believed the debate over this issue was about protecting the religious freedom of organizations while preserving individual liberties. I strongly believe that the government should not force religious institutions to violate the tenets of their beliefs. I also understand the health benefits of preventive services and believe it is important for women to have access to contraceptive care. I am encouraged that the Administration has sought a compromise on this issue. As this rule is implemented, the Administration will need to work closely with religious organizations to ensure that this rule truly provides the proper balance between religious freedom and individual liberty.

On March 13, 2011, Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) introduced H.R. 1179, the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act. H.R. 1179 allows insurance companies to deny coverage for items contrary to the religious beliefs of the plans’ sponsors. I support the goal that this legislation seeks to advance—ensuring that federal policy protects Americans’ freedom of conscience. However, whenever possible, I generally believe it is best to solve problems with a scalpel, not a hatchet, and I think the Obama Administration’s rule addresses the issue of religious freedom without the unintended consequences broader legislation could invite. That said, I will continue monitoring the implementation of this rule closely over the coming months, and will keep your strong support for this legislation in mind.

I appreciate your taking the time to share your thoughts with me. I take seriously the trust Delawareans have placed in me and my responsibility to represent them in Congress, and I look forward to serving you in the coming years. end

I didn’t say I was in support of any legislation…

Akzed on February 18, 2012 at 11:02 AM

I love living in Mass, but hate the 1 party rule we have on Bacon Hill. I vote regularly in elections. All things considered, I wouldn’t want to live in any other state unless forced to.

shanimal on February 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM

Sums up my attitude perfectly.

As easy as it would be to head north to NH, I will not give up another inch of ground. I am staying, I’ve had enough, it is worth fighting for even if only incremental gain.

roy_batty on February 17, 2012 at 2:58 PM

A big Bravo Zulu to both of you and everyone up there who is fighting the good fight. It’s an inspiration to hear from folks such as you. Hang tough, and keep up the good work!

DagoTwit on February 19, 2012 at 1:44 AM

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