Posted by on September 11, 2012 in Blog

With the primaries over, the Massachusetts political season moves into full swing. The Senate contest between incumbent Scott Brown and challenger Elizabeth Warren has been making national news for months. In fact, it was national news when Brown, a Republican, won the late Sen. Ted Kennedy’s seat in a surprise 2010 upset. Congressional leaders from both parties viewed it as a referendum on both Obama and his proposed healthcare reforms, and a portent of a broader national shift.

This year could see another upset in the Commonwealth, as Rep. John Tierney (D) faces off against Republican Richard Tisei for the 6th District seat. But far from a referendum on issues, the campaign is turning into a mutual assault on integrity, with one side now getting national backing for its attacks. That’s an issue because other Massachusetts candidates—including Brown and Warren—have taken “The People’s Pledge,” a promise to forego the use of outside money in the campaign. Tierney has said that he would sign the pledge, as well—if and when Tisei signs.

It looks like that won’t happen, given the new anti-Tierney ad scheduled to air in October. The ad is funded by the “Young Guns Action Fund,” a GOP SuperPAC founded in 2011 by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan, and Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy. The bulk of YGAF’s support comes from Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, who already have spent $36 million on the 2012 elections.

With the question of the People’s Pledge out of the way, voters in Massachusetts could hope for more debate on issues rather than finances. But don’t hold your breath—it seems the debates themselves are a point of contention. Tisei declined to participate in the August 31 debate sponsored by the non-partisan Mass Senior Action Council, and has said that he also won’t participate in the debate sponsored by the League of Women Voters.  

So while the rest of the nation looks to Massachusetts to determine the make-up of the 113th Congress, people in the Commonwealth are still looking for a comment on the issues.

As our Yalla Vote program moves into high-gear in the coming weeks, let us know how you’re getting the candidates on the record about our issues and what you’re hearing on the ground.

And stay tuned for more information about AAI’s GOTV efforts—including local phone banks and voter registration events in Massachusetts.

comments powered by Disqus