With Massachusetts Democrats having a very good year there has been much speculation about the potential vulnerability of Republican Senator Scott Brown in 2012. A new Public Policy survey shows Brown in a relatively good spot, with a very good favorability rating and a good sized lead on all potential Democratic opponents.
Brown tops recently re-elected Governor Deval Patrick, 49-42; Kennedy’s widow Vicki,
48-41; 34-year representative of the 7th congressional district, Ed Markey, 49-39; 8th district
Congressman Mike Capuano, 52-36; and 9th-district Congressman Stephen Lynch, 49-30. The varying deficits are largely a function of name recognition, but there is clearly a ceiling for a Democrat right now in an unlikely place. Brown gets 22-28% of Democrats, something usually only seen in Southern Democratic states like North Carolina. He maintains 85-89% of his own party, and holds 29- to 34-point leads with independents, who make up almost as much of the electorate (38%) as Democrats (42%).
Brown’s approval rating is higher than John Kerry’s, with 53% approving of his job performance. Brown also continues to bank a large amount of campaign cash and should be in a strong financial position in 2012. Can he be had? Despite his very good numbers this is still Massachusetts, and I think it very possible. But I do think that the Dems greatly lessen their chances with a wide open, multi candidate primary. This is a democracy, and many will likely be interested in running, but such a field may lead stronger candidates to sit out the race. Either Deval Patrick or Vicki Kennedy could win a race like that, in my opinion, but would they be interested in such a primary? (The Governor has said he will not run). And Brown is a great campaigner who is not afraid of work. Yes he is potentially vulnerable, but you have to like his chances today. The Public Policy press release is below.