He is a tea-party-backed conservative serving in deep-blue Massachusetts, but polling released this morning suggests that Scott Brown is “looking good” for his 2012 re-election bid.
Brown enjoys high favorables and leads by no less than 7 points in a series of hypothetical head-to-head matchups, according to a survey of 500 Massachusetts voters taken Nov. 29 to Dec. 1 by the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling.
While a challenger has yet to emerge in the effort to oust the tea-party-backed Brown, Democrats in Massachusetts and Washington are targeting the seat as a top pickup opportunity in 2012. Roll Call Politics rates this race as a Tossup.
“Scott Brown is not going to be a pushover for Democrats in 2012,” Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling, said in a statement. “Since taking office he’s been able to maintain the appeal to the center that got him elected as a Republican in a dark blue state.”
Fifty-three percent of respondents said Brown’s views are “about right,” a feeling that just 38 percent said about the GOP as a whole. Similarly, PPP found that 52 percent believe Republicans in general are too conservative, while just 33 percent said Brown was too conservative. (Download a PDF of the poll here.)
That’s bad news for a crowded field of potential candidates, who’d like to prove that Brown’s 2009 special-election victory in the race to replace the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D) was largely a fluke.
The polling firm, however, notes that there’s time for the numbers to shift, especially as the challengers’ name recognition grows.
Here’s a look at potential matchups, thanks to PPP:
- Brown vs. recently re-elected Gov. Deval Patrick: 49 percent to 42 percent. - Brown vs. Kennedy's widow Vicki Kennedy: 48 percent to 41 percent. - Brown vs. longtime 7th district Rep. Ed Markey: 49 percent to 39 percent. - Brown vs. 8th district Rep. Mike Capuano: 52 percent to 36 percent. - Brown vs. 9th district Rep. Stephen Lynch; 49 percent to 30 percent.
The margin of error was 4.4 percent.
For more from our At the Races politics blog, click here.
Following the speeches from elected officials, the crowd stands at long tables as they dig into BBQ, brunswick stew, cadillac rice at the Law Enforcement Cookout at Wayne Dasher's pond house in Glennville, Ga., on Thursday, April 17, 2014.