Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Mass Primary Update

If you're looking for results from Tuesday's primaries in Massachusetts, they're here.

If you're not a Bay Stater and want to know if Sen. Kennedy is going to have an opponent, the answer is "technically, yes." Find out about him here.

I was asked before the election what the difference was between the two Republicans running in the US Senate primary. My answer: "One of them can't win in November, and the other one is certain to lose."

Here's my "Winners and Losers" list from the primary:

WINNER: Deval Patrick. You don't have to get 50% of the vote to win a primary in Massachusetts, but it helps. He's not just the front-runner, he's the solidly supporter, party-uniting nominee on day one. That's very good news for Democrats.

WINNER: Liberal supporters of illegal immigration. Not only is Patrick a supporter of open borders, amnesty, subsidized tuition for illegal aliens at MA colleges, but he is prepared as governor to sign into law an act to give drivers licenses to immigration criminals in Massachusetts. Also, Democrats defeated their strongest voice against illegal immigration, Rep. Marie Parente, last night and replaced her with a pro-illegal candidate. Fence-sitting Democrats across the state are no doubt watching and learning.

WINNER: Mitt Romney. The overwhelming victory by former Clinton DOJ official Deval Patrick is the best news Mitt Romney could have gotten out of the race to replace him in the Massachusetts Governor's office. Patrick is a great candidate, to be sure: appealing, likeable and smart. However, he is also a movement liberal who sticks out even among the local Blue Staters.

A moderate Democrat would be all but a shoo-in, but Patrick is precisely the kind of Democratic nominee who has made it possible for the GOP to hold onto the governor's mansion the past 16 years. Patrick helps Romney by making this race competitive, which will bring regional and national attention.

If his Lt. Governor, Kerry Healy beats Patrick and holds the office for the Republicans, it will reinforce the "Conservative Republican who wins Blue States" argument that is Romney's strongest case for the nomination.

In addition, Patrick is a Clintonista. Republicans in California and Michigan who normally wouldn't care about the MA governor's race will be tuning in a little more closely when this race pops up on CNN. Beating Patrick isn't like beating Hillary, but it's closer than any of the other Democratic candidates out there.

LOSER: Attorney General Tom Reilly. 'Nuff said. (But if you want to gloat, go here.)

LOSER: Kerry Healy. OK, so Lt. Gov. Healy didn't completely lose last night. She could be facing mega-bucks "moderate" (in Ohio, he'd be a screaming Lefty) Chris Gabrielli, and instead gets to take on pro-illegal, pro-tax, pro-racial quotas, pro-reparations Deval Patrick, which makes the race competitive.

But what Healy really wanted last night was for Tom Reilly to come in second, not get handed his head in third. Reilly was the candidate of what's left of the Reagan Democrats. He was the "we don't want another liberal nut" candidate in this primary. Yes, Gabrielli voters are potential Healy voters, too, but they are going to be easier to keep in the Democratic fold. Reilly voters are going to hear Deval Patrick say "I want your local governments to be able to raise your taxes to provide for public services for illegal immigrants" and then RUN to the polls to vote GOP. Healy needed more of those voters turning out last night.

LOSER: Christy Mihos. The independent outsider now has to compete with "independent outsider" Deval Patrick. The "inside/outside 'they hate me on Beacon Hill'" story line has already been taken, Mr. Mihos. Why do we need a former Republican like you on the ballot?