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News analysis: voter participation to determine governor race

Posted By Justin Kieran On October 28, 2010 @ 2:03 am In Features | Comments Disabled

As the November midterm elections draw near, residents not just of Massachusetts, but all over the United States await with bated breath to see whether or not President Obama and the Democrats will be able to hold onto their majority in the House of Representatives as well as in the Senate.
But after the surprising turn of events in last year’s race for a senate seat formally held by Ted Kennedy, Massachusetts residents in particular seem to be more focused on state elections. After 8000 voters turned out for a speech last month to hear our president praise Deval Patrick, the current democratic governor, it’s no wonder that voters prefer him to Charles Baker (R), Jill Stein (G), or Tim Cahill (I).
As of now, Patrick has 46 percent of the vote, with Baker at 39 percent.
Patrick’s issue with only two weeks until election day is not getting support, but rather getting that support to show up on election day.
In 2009, as America watched Scott Brown win one of the most important senate seats at the time, a deep truth was made clear: “Obama-mania was over. Part of the reason that Obama won by such a landslide in 2008 was because voters from all over our country got excited for his movement of change.
After two years, many voters in Massachusetts have seen little change at all; the healthcare bill that passed through Congress is something that we’re used to in a state in which 98 percent of residents have insurance, and Massachusetts still has numerous economic issues.
Suddenly, many democratic and liberal voters are deciding not to vote on November second.
The good news is that Patrick still has room to fix his issues. Although the Democrats, including Patrick himself, cannot boast about results, they can rally together to get votes on election day.
A Gallup poll from September 2010 reminds us that 54 percent of Americans believe that conservatives in this country have become more conservative, and that about the same number of liberal voters are voting for their candidate just to spite Republicans.
Patrick also has a chance to remind voters that with Republicans becoming the party of “ no, Charlie Baker may not be the best choice.
Most importantly, the other candidates have shown their own faults, which may end up saving Patrick in the long run.
Charlie Baker is being attacked for firing thousands during hard times. Tim Cahill is unable to separate himself from the competition, with 40 percent of voters saying that they are unable to tell the difference between him and the republican candidate.
All the while, Jill Stein hasn’t even fully explained her stance on issues such as balancing the budget, abortion rights, or gay marriage.
In the end, Deval Patrick needs to do one thing: get people excited. At this point, he is both the favorite to win, as well as the candidate with the fewest threats to his campaign.
John McCain nearly lost his own state in the presidential election (winning only 53 percent of the vote) because he assumed that his constituency would show up on election day.
As long as Patrick stays focused, the election should be a predictable one.

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URL to article: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/10/28/news-analysis-voter-participation-to-determine-governor-race/

URLs in this post:

[1] Governor debate: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/10/28/governor-debate/

[2] South reflects on Brown’s victory: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/02/10/south-reflects-on-brown%e2%80%99s-victory/

[3] Stand and be counted: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2008/09/24/stand-and-be-counted/

[4] Q1 eliminates income tax: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2008/10/29/q1-eliminates-income-tax/

[5] Fight for the Fifth District: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2007/09/23/fight-for-the-fifth-district/

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