Few were saying this until the spotlight shifted to the race, but Scott Brown is shaping up to be one of the most striking talents to emerge in GOP circles in years. He has highly positive personal ratings in most polls. Some of this stems from having the airwaves to himself and audaciously (but accurately) introducing himself to voters as the candidate who backs John F. Kennedy’s proposal for across-the-board tax cuts.
So far, Brown has been masterly at hitting the right tone. When Obama made four or five references to Brown’s truck in his stump speech for Coakley — including the dismissive “everybody can buy a truck” — Brown responded, “Mr. President, unfortunately, in this economy, not everybody can buy a truck. My goal is to change that by cutting spending, lowering taxes, and letting people keep more of their own money.” It would have been easy to make it “your economy,” but Brown held back from making it him vs. the president. His jabs at rallies are veiled, indirect: “It’s funny how quickly the politics of hope have turned into the politics of destruction.”
At rallies, Brown explicitly pitches himself to Democrats; he doesn’t begin by assuming that everyone agrees with him. His advertising and campaign web videos feature a lot of his supporters, and not a ton of him. He’s populist, but not angry.