In politics, sometimes you can have it both ways. Boston.com proved that last night.
In the minutes before news outlets nationwide called the New Hampshire U.S. Senate race for U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, the website prematurely posted a pair of conflicting stories — one entitled “Scott Brown Wins U.S. Senate Seat for New Hampshire,” the other under the headline “U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen Beats Scott Brown in New Hampshire.”
The site responded to the error on their Twitter page soon after, saying “… The NH election stories were published prematurely. We’re taking steps to fix the problem. Sorry for any confusion.”
That’s nothing – last night we saw these election results on one local news site:
New Hampshire Senate
Scott Brown ( R ) 50%
Jeanne Shaheen (D) 51%
James Granite Curley lives!
Anyway, congrats to the Herald on getting through last night without making a single error.
There’s lots of interesting advertising material in today’s local dailies, starting with the Boston Globe’s Capital section. Usually the papers’s weekly political playground capitalizes on its cherce readership with a bundle of full-page ads, but in today’s edition what’s more interesting are the pieces about advertising.
First up: Noah Guiney’s scorecard on some of the latest New England campaign ads. Representative sample:
Charlie Baker, Martha Coakley, Seth Moulton, and Jeanne Shaheen also get the red-pen treatment.
Getting the graphic treatment are Political ads that aired most often (in two parts for legibility – sorry, no link).
Fun for the whole family.
Crosstown at the Boston Herald, it’s today’s ads themselves that are most noteworthy, starting with this one for heavy Lyfters.
That’s appeared before in the Herald, but not (to our knowledge) in the Globe.
Here’s another one that we haven’t seen in the stately local broadsheet.
In shift, he releases records; got $126k for Fox News job
MANCHESTER, N.H. — Former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown has earned hundreds of thousands of dollars since leaving office by collecting speech fees, a six-figure paycheck from Fox News, and a variety of other income, according to documents made public Friday.
Brown, who lost his 2012 bid for reelection and is now seeking a US Senate seat in New Hampshire, made 20 paid speeches for $186,000 between January 2013 and May 2014. They included a London address to the Royal Bank of Scotland for $20,000 last year, a $900 speech at the Billerica Community Alliance in October, and a $20,000 paycheck for speaking at a hedge fund conference in Las Vegas last month.
Billerica Community Alliance? $900? Seriously?
As he did in Massachusetts, Brown has sought to present an image of himself as a regular guy with a pickup truck for his New Hampshire Senate bid. New Hampshire’s median household income, among the nation’s highest, is about $65,000.
The New Hampshire Senate rumpus is taking on an air war v. ground war theme, as Joshua Miller reported in yesterday’s Boston Globe.
In N.H., candidate Brown laces up shoes to connect with voters
BEDFORD, N.H. — Beer in hand and sweat-soaked T-shirt sticking to his chest, Scott Brown made his way through the crowd of hundreds of fellow runners, many sporting fake mustaches or oversized sombreros.
After finishing a Cinco de Mayo-themed 5 kilometer road race Sunday morning, he drank Dos Equis, posed for cellphone pictures, and engaged scores of people in short, upbeat conversations. They began with Brown inquiring how they did in the race and ended with the same refrain: “Can I count on your vote?”
In his bid to unseat US Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Brown has placed an outsize emphasis on retail political events. From pouring drinks for customers at a restaurant in Lebanon, to meeting voters at a Market Basket in Epping, Brown has worked to exude an accessible image in New Hampshire, where meeting politicians is particularly prized by voters.
Incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen seems to be going the other way, despite her campaign’s weak protestations in the Globe piece.
Shaheen had one public event on Sunday, joining the rest of the state’s congressional delegation and the governor at a ceremony honoring soldiers who returned from a deployment in Afghanistan this year.
Shaheen aides said she has been focused more on helping Granite Staters through her Senate work than on campaign-style events.
But, in a statement, campaign manager Mike Vlacich noted Shaheen had hosted the first in a series of “grass-roots summits” on Saturday, meeting with volunteers and supporters.
“Our campaign is proud of the broad support for Jeanne Shaheen across New Hampshire, and regardless of who the Republicans nominate, we are building the grass-roots network we will need to win in a midterm election year,” he said.
NEW IN THE AIR WAR — SHAHEEN LAUNCHES FIRST AD: Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is out with her first TV ad of the cycle, featuring Dwight Clark, a Vietnam vet, talking about her efforts on behalf of veterans. “We’d been promised a vets center in Keene for 30 years and got nothing,” he says in the ad. “Then Jeanne Shaheen grabbed the bull by the horns and cut through the red tape and got things going. She pushed it right through right from start to finish.” Shaheen’s campaign declined to share the size of the buy, but said the ad began running Sunday night and will go at least through this week on cable and WMUR. It was made by Grunwald Communications.
Jeanne Shaheen gets the job done for New Hampshire?
Better right now she should get the job done for herself.
Which could mean giving TV commercials the air and coming back to earth, retail-style.
Maybe Scott Brown should just ditch the whole politics thing and become a rock star. Because the former U.S. senator — and maybe future candidate for U.S. Senate from New Hampshire — ripped it up onstage with Cheap Trick over the weekend, singing and playing guitar on the band’s big ’78 hit “Surrender.”
“It was a lot of fun,” Brown told the Track. “Great guys. Very talented and gracious. … Looking forward to doing it again.”
(Brown also tweeted this out: “Just played guitar with Cheap Trick. It was sooooooo fun.” What is he – twelve years old?)
The frisky local tabloid helpfully provides this video to illustrate just how fun it was:
The hard(of)hearing staff will be the first to admit that we stopped listening to rock ‘n’ roll right about, oh, Katy Lied. So we’ll refrain from passing musical judgment and just say Brown’s as gifted a musician as he is a policymaker.
In most states, such an obviously opportunistic move would present an obstacle to any kind of political future. But Massachusetts and New Hampshire are paired in an interesting way. A rejection of Massachusetts-style taxation and intrusive government is an important part of the New Hampshire narrative. Alas, so too is a deep suspicion of artifice or pretense.
The qualities that made Brown appealing to Massachusetts voters — affability and a middle-of-the-road approach to governing — will play as well, or perhaps even better, in New Hampshire. But the quality that ultimately led to his defeat in 2012 — the lack of a substantial agenda, leading to concerns about the seriousness with which he engages national problems — may be even more brutally exposed in New Hampshire.
Not to mention he’s a carpetbagging moderate who’s soft on guns rights.
The Boston Herald’s Joe Battenfeld says Brown will have to scramble in more ways than one:
There are certain things you have to do in the Granite State, like being subjected to direct and sometimes uncomfortable questions from voters. No dodging the media glare, either. Giving a speech, shaking some hands and fleeing to the safety of the pickup truck won’t cut it.
Here are some other suggestions for Brown:
• Don’t pronounce Berlin like the city in Germany. The locals won’t like that very much.
• Don’t say that you’re looking forward to seeing the Old Man of the Mountain. It’s not there anymore . . .
• And please don’t try to pretend you love guns and like to hunt “varmints.”
Then again, early indications are Brown will have lots of help if he is interested in running. From Politico’s Morning Score:
National Republicans are encouraging Brown to run, and see him as the party’s only chance to make that race competitive. Now, as James Hohmann reports, the GOP group Ending Spending is dropping $100,000 on a new ad hitting [Democratic Sen. Jeanne] Shaheen and running online ads to draft Brown (http://politi.co/199Cl8r).
Here’s the website. And here’s the TV spot hitting Shaheen with the Obamacare stick (kicker: “So next November, if you like your Senator, you can keep her. If you don’t, you know what to do . . . “):
Of course, first Scott Brown needs to decide what to do.
Our feisty local tabloid is a regular fanzine for former Sen. Scott Brown (R-Elsewhere). Yesterday he hit the trifecta in the Herald. Today it’s the daily double.
First he gets the full-page treatment in his burgeoning feud with New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-Fundraiser).
The lede has Brown accusing Shaheen of casting “the deciding vote” on Obamacare. Oldest trick in the book: you can say the same of every one of the other 59 votes that got the Affordable Care Act passed.
I think it’s shameful that she would do that … because I’m not a declared candidate, and for her to infer anything differently is misrepresenting me and her intentions to the people that are allegedly and supposedly giving her money,” he added.
Ten bucks to anyone who can diagram that sentence. And, not to get technical about it, he meant “imply.” Fortunately for Brown, a firm grasp of the English language is no longer a prerequisite for high office.
But wait – there’s more in the Boston Brown & Gazette. For the second straight day the Herald is acting as Brown’s co-broker in the sale of his Wrentham home.
And they say newspapers don’t carry classified ads anymore.
Crosstown at the Boston Globe, the story is less hyperventilating and doesn’t mention Shaheen deciding Obamacare.
But the piece did note that Brown arrived at the New Hampshire function hall “in a dented GMC pickup truck.”
The New Hampshire senator and her fellow Democrats have spent the past few days crying wolf about Bay State Republican Scott Brown’s rumored run against Shaheen, blasting out fundraising emails ahead of Brown’s appearance tonight in Hampstead, N.H.
Brown’s former foe, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), chimed in on Friday, and yesterday even failed presidential candidate Howard Dean jumped in, crowing, “New Hampshire deserves a voice, not a Karl Rove pawn.”
Dean the Scream mocking you, Scott? That’s bad. So, Chabot says, “prove ’em wrong.”
Crosstown at the Boston Globe, Brown’s an afterthought sitting at the bottom of Page 3.
But it’s a whole nother story at the local dailies when it comes to Eugene Rivers. Rather than let him hijack the front page the way the Herald did last week, the Globe actually covers the prattlin’ preacher. From Adrian Walker’s Metro column:
He says vote, but doesn’t
The Rev. Eugene F. Rivers 3d struck such a forceful pose and tone on the cover of the Boston Herald Thursday, in a lament for what he viewed as the black community’s wasted opportunity in last week’s preliminary mayoral election.
In an op-ed column, the cofounder of the Boston TenPoint Coalition castigated black voters for a litany of sins, many of them related to the supposedly unsophisticated failure to coalesce around a single candidate of color.
To Rivers — an energetic advocate for former state representative Charlotte Golar Richie — his community’s failure led to the apparently heartbreaking result that two white Irish men are facing off in the final election for mayor of Boston.
Rivers was especially troubled by the fools who didn’t even bother to vote.
The punchline, of course, is that Rivers himself did not vote. Hasn’t for more than 10 years.