Senator Kirk; Plus, The Ch. 7/Suffolk Poll

--On September 1st, I predicted on Twitter and Facebook that Paul Kirk would be the temporary Senate appointee -- I believe I was the first to publicly float his name for it. The next day a Boston Phoenix editorial advocating Kirk for the position went online. (To the best of my knowledge, that was also the first place where the point was made that Kennedy's staff had ceased its constituent-services work, and a temporary appointment would allow them to re-start it.) Just wanted to to take credit for that, and point out that while I'm not always right, I'm not always wrong!

--Kerry, Kennedy, now Kirk... does this K-Senator trend bode well for Alan Khazei? Here's another omen: Kirk's appointment means that a Harvard college grad has held that Senate seat since 1947 Kirk, Ted K, Ben Smith (JFK roomie at Harvard), JFK, H.C. Lodge; last non-Crimson was David Walsh, Holy Cross '93 (1893 that is). Khazei is the only Harvard alum in the race (although Pagliuca went to HBS). 

--The new Suffolk UCh. 7/WBZ[Correction -- also corrected in blog title. Oops!] poll on the governor's race confirms, I would argue, my long-held argument that Patrick has a huge advantage in the three-way race. Patrick leads in the poll with 36%, to Cahill's 23% and Baker's 14%, despite continuing low opinion of Patrick and the direction of the state. A "second choice" question reveals that, as I and others suggested, Cahill and Baker (or Mihos) are splitting the anti-Patrick vote. As long as Cahill and Baker both run serious, viable campaigns (ie, garnerign at least 15% of the vote) -- and if the state's economy doesn't get much worse -- Patrick will really have to screw up to lose. Which is certainly possible.

--The poll also shows what sad shape the state GOP is in. Charlie Baker, remember, is the party's dream candidate for a state-wide run, and yet he starts off with just 14% in a three-way race against, essentially, two Democrats. That will grow, presumably, as people find out who he is (his fav/unfav is 15/11, meaning that only one out of four people know enough to have an opinion of him), but it says something that the party's best bet is a public non-entity. And, despite the low opinion of Patrick and the Democratically-dominated legislature, only 35% say the state would be better off with a Republican governor, with 54% saying no. (Here's a startling, if questionable pair of stats for you: 60 percent of women say Patrick does not deserve re-election, but 60% say the state would not be better under a Republican.)

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