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MA Sen: Schumer Goes Gutter, Globe Endorses, Dems Plot Delay

6:12 PM, Jan 13, 2010 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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Sen. Chuck Schumer sent out a plea from Ted Kennedy's widow today with this charming introduction:

I got the message below from Ted Kennedy's widow, Vicki, and I wanted to make sure you saw it.

Martha Coakley is running to fill the rest of Ted Kennedy's term, and her opponent is a far-right tea-bagger Republican.

It would be bad enough to lose this seat -- and Democrats' sixtieth vote in the Senate -- right before the final health care reform vote. But it would be even worse for the decisive "no" vote to come from Ted Kennedy's old seat.

A senator using crude sexual slang in an official missive to voters does not seem like the best tack, here. And, then there's the issue of whether Brown, though certainly supported by Tea Partiers, is a Tea Party-style candidate. As Mark Hemingway notes, perhaps the purity-testing troglodytes of the movement are not as unsophisticated and ideological as the press would have you believe:

Now Tea Party opponents have to explain Scott Brown, who's running in the Massachusetts special Senate election. Brown is an independent-thinking, pro-choice Republican -- a likable guy from Wrentham who drives a truck.

He may be more liberal than most Republicans, but he's well-suited to represent Massachusetts. He's narrowly ahead in a number of polls, and just raised an astounding $1.3 million in a single day.

Meanwhile, the Boston Globe ends the suspense and...endorses Coakley, according to Twitter rumor.And, speculation about whether Democrats would delay Scott Brown's seating if he were to win gets more fuel from this AP report:

Massachusetts's top election official says it could take weeks to certify the results of the upcoming U.S. Senate special election. That delay could let President Barack Obama preserve a key 60th vote for his health care overhaul even if the Republican who has vowed to kill it wins Democrat Edward M. Kennedy's former seat.

Secretary of State William F. Galvin, citing state law, says city and town clerks must wait at least 10 days for absentee ballots to arrive before they certify the results of the Jan. 19 election. They then have five more days to file the returns with his office.

Galvin bypassed the provision in 2007 so his fellow Democrats could gain a House vote they needed to override a veto of then-Republican President George W. Bush, but the secretary says U.S. Senate rules would preclude a similar rush today.

And, the McCormack story is not the only problem for Coakley coming out of the lobbyist schmooze night Coakley spent in D.C. The Massachusetts GOP hit her with this ad today: 

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