Black Public Scholars

January 27, 2010

Black Political News: Howard Professor Talks Obama and Massachusetts

 

By

Dr. Wilmer J. Leon III

A great deal of Massachusetts’ history is tied to the sea. Because of this, Massachusetts is also known for its lighthouses. Lighthouses were once the trusted tool that guided navigators through treacherous waters enabling them to avoid coastal rocks and running aground. Like the lighthouse, the election to fill the U.S. Senate seat from Massachusetts should serve as a beacon to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Obama administration.

As the Democrats navigate through these treacherous and rocky political waters, the election of Scott Brown as the Senator to replace Ted Kennedy should serve as a warning to the DNC of the dangers of arrogance, complacency, and disorganization. It should also serve notice to the Obama administration of the dangers of failing to articulate a consistent message and failing to deliver what was promised to your supporters.

First, the DNC should recognize that Scott Brown did not run a great campaign insomuch as Martha Coakley, like Cree Deeds in Virginia, ran a terrible one. Coakley ran an elitist campaign, failing to reach out to the communities that helped to elect Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and President Obama. According to the Boston Globe, “The lapses were particularly noticeable in minority communities, traditionally bastions of Democratic votes, which did not turn out in high numbers…” As a demonstration of her arrogance, Coakley took a week off and vacationed during the campaign. According to The Hill, “Martha Coakley’s New Year’s vacation may reign as one of the costliest political blunders of all time.” Even if you’ve “got it in the bag” you never leave the bag unattended!

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