Despite the general consensus that Elizabeth Warren came out on top after last Monday’s debate, the latest poll from WBUR/MassINC shows Scott Brown leading by three points in the Massachusetts Senate race, 48% to 45%. Though it seemed Brown would take a hit after choosing Antonin Scalia as his favorite Supreme Court Justice in front of the audience at UMass Lowell (oops!), Mitt Romney’s strong performance versus Obama last Thursday – which propelled him ahead of Obama in national polls this week and raised him nearly five points in Mass. – has buoyed support for Brown in the Bay State.
Tonight’s debate is the third head-to-head between the shrewd Harvard Law professor and the mightily square-jawed incumbent, and given the way the polls have been seesawing over the last few months, this debate has the potential to give one candidate a major boost before the final sprint to Election Day.
Hopefully, Warren and Brown will be able to put their latest kerfuffle aside – no, not the Cherokee debacle, the spat over who represented the most terrible clients in private practice – and address the current hot issues, including the candidates’ differing tax policies.
Brown, in favor of an extension of the Bush-era tax cuts, alleges in his ad released Monday (aptly titled “Taxes”) that Warren’s policy of cutting taxes for the middle and lower classes will hurt small business and cost Massachusetts over 17,000 jobs. Warren, whose campaign centers on her advocacy for the working and middle class American family, supports higher taxes for the wealthy and has been in strong favor of the Buffett rule.
Both candidates have received influential support from organizers lately. Massachusetts Tea Party folks, most notably, are again voicing their endorsement of Brown, presumably because he is less bad than Warren.
Warren, on the other hand, has the backing of most Massachusetts unions, and on Monday welcomed this clear show of support from the asbestos union, knocking down repeated claims from Brown that Warren has an anti-union history.
Tune in tonight to for PolicyMic’s live blog of the debate, or stream it at wggb.com. Also – brief message for all you Masshole out-of-staters – don’t forget to download your absentee ballot application (now you have no excuse). The Commonwealth needs your votes!