Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Did Coakley thug shove reporter to the ground?

There's some evidence that a Coakley apparatchik shoved a reporter to the ground last night when he asked a question that the staffer (and the candidate) didn't like.

As I write this (I didn't last night, as I wanted to see whether it was real or not, and it hasn't been debunked in the last 10 hours) the story seems to be growing legs.

Michael Graham, partly because of this event, now thinks that Scott Brown can win.
The video of the Coakley staffer—most likely DNC hack and former Kerry campaigher Michael Meehan— shoving the Weekly Standard's John McCormack to the ground, and then repeatedly shoving him again and again in view of AG Coakley, is a watershed moment. It could turn out to be a campaign killer.

First, it highlights the fact that Coakley had left Massachusetts to attend a lobbyist fundraiser in D.C.. Taking big bucks from Big Pharma in the middle of this fight? Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Then there's the guy who got shoved. McCormack is the reporter who asked the question about Afghanistan that literally stopped Coakley in her tracks. After a few blinks of incomprehension, she answered by asking "Does anyone ELSE have a question?" This issue is a disaster for Coakley because it reveals her utter lack of experience or (apparently) basic knowledge on foreign policy, just two weeks after a terrorist successfully got on a U.S. airplane.

And perhaps most damaging is the power of this example. If I were to summarize the attitude of the typical Massachusetts resident right now, it would be "tired of being pushed around." Our governing class doesn't even bother to pretend to pay attention to the people. The last-second rule change on Senate elections is just the latest example of political arrogance.


This is an absolute disaster for the Coakley campaign.
I don't disagree with a word of that, and yet I'm still not convinced. I said earlier that it would take a perfect storm for Brown to win. Well, he's getting that perfect storm. The structural advantage for Coakley is overwhelming, but stuff like this, if it metastasizes, which it could, erases a lot of that advantage. Absent a really quick and compelling response from the Coakley camp, this is going to be subject number one on Boston talk radio today.

It still may not be enough, but I thought Brown had about a 20% chance a week ago, and right now, it looks as if it might be 50-50.

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