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The Next Scott Brown?

11:50 AM, Feb 17, 2013 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
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A Boston-area friend with a good track record writes in about the Massachusetts Senate race to fill the remainder of John Kerry's term. A highlight of my friend's track record? In late 2009, before a single poll had shown Scott Brown to be within 30 points of Martha Coakley, he sent an email suggesting that Brown had more of a chance than most thought, and that national conservatives and Republicans and conservatives should rally behind him.

Here are his current thoughts: 

Can lightning strike twice? With Gabriel Gomez, a new voice in Massachusetts politics, I think it just might. Similar circumstances seem to be at work as in 2010.  We have another candidate who can lay out a path to a winning coalition.  And, again, should he be the GOP nominee, he will face a run of the mill generic liberal Democrat (which guaranties a 45% vote for the Democrat, but does not guaranty a victory for him).

And just as in 2010, a strong showing by the GOP candidate (whether a victory or not), will be important for the mid-terms.  As you know, the MA Senate election is in late June.  And it will be at about that time that candidate recruitment efforts for House and Senate races across the country will be in full bloom for both parties.  If Republicans can show well in Massachusetts, that will make strong GOP candidates think it's worth a go in 2014 (and it will also make strong Democrats think twice about a tough race).  Thus, if Republicans want to take back the Senate and keep the House, a strong showing in the Massachusetts special election will be a great step.

I don’t go way back with Gomez, but I've now spent several hours with him one-on-one in the last couple of weeks.  Even though I know all of the other Republicans who are running or thinking of running, I've become convinced that we should rally around Gabriel and see what he can do.  (I will note that the other Republican candidates are all good men, all men I would be proud to have as my Senator.  But they are all politicians, lawyers or both.  And it's ver difficult for me to see any of them beating Congressman Markey or Congressman Lynch, the two Democrats running.)

Gomez on the other hand, seems to be a perfect candidate.  He is smart as a whip, engaging and a natural at connecting with people.  And he holds key conservative principles while still being the kind of Republican who can win in Massachusetts – committed to going to DC to look for common ground and common sense solutions.  Having talked with him at length, however, I am confident that he will never compromise his principles for political expediency.

Further, his life-story reflects the kind of American success story that we should all take pride in, celebrating the ability of any individual to build a good and successful life, something that we in the GOP champion. 

Gomez’s parents are immigrants from Colombia.  From that beginning, he has met with success after success.  First he went to the Naval Academy where he graduated with merit.  Once in the service he qualified as a carrier pilot and then he moved on to the Navy Seals.  After his service he went to Harvard Business School and then went into business where he has built a successful career.  And, certainly not least of all, he is a proud husband and father of 4.

From everything I've seen, he is a good man who can take the argument to whichever creature of Washington gets the Democratic nomination.  And with hard work, enough support from the grassroots and a little bit of skill and luck, he might just win.  Unlike the Democrats in the race, he is not a politician.  He is, however, a man with a compelling narrative, a man who built a life out of hard work, intelligence, principle and the opportunities for service and upward mobility that this country provides.  And, I am convinced that, if he is elected, he will go to Washington with that message and work to be an agent of common sense and good judgment.  Check out his website at http://www.gomezforma.com/

Let’s see if we can be two for two in Mass. special elections!

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