Media Speculation about Warren and Brown

Scott Brown’s prospects for a return to the Senate from New Hampshire and Elizabeth Warren’s potential as a 2016 Democratic contender for the White House have become popular subjects of media speculation lately. Considering how much time and energy we here at Masspoliticsprofs gave to the 2012 epic battle between these two, I thought it appropriate to weigh in.

Like too much of what passes for political analysis these days in the media, this looks to me like filler; a product of the need for professional political writers (the ones whose media analysis actually pays the bills) to pump out anywhere from three to ten stories, columns, or posts per week. It’s not that either scenario is impossible, but neither is likely, nor is either a very pressing concern.

If Republicans succeed in convincing Brown to challenge Shaheen, he will lose and we here at Masspoliticsprofs will have a swell time commenting on the race from the cheap seats. In other words, the race would be good for political scientists and political junkies, but that’s about it.

The speculation about Warren is a bit more complicated. She is being discussed as either a challenger to Hilary Clinton, or as a representative of a shift in the party away from the 2008 version of Hilary, which was far more moderate than the 1990s version. Warren is said to represent old style progressive populism. If this brand of progressivism is ascendant in the Democratic Party, so the story goes, Secretary Clinton will have to upgrade to Hilary 3.0, whether or not Senator Warren throws her own hat into the ring.

This Warren “analysis” is premature, and it over-estimates the difficulty Clinton would have bringing either Warren herself, or Warren’s brand of progressivism, into the Clinton camp. I’d elaborate on this a bit more here if I had time, but since my media analysis doesn’t pay any bills, I’ll leave it to MPP readers/commenters to move my thoughts and predictions on these weighty matters forward.

I will say that I think Senator Warren is too smart to want to be president, and that Scott Brown isn’t naive enough to fall for his party’s pitch on this one.

P.S. This Jonathan Chait piece about Warren is more than filler.

About Jerold Duquette

Jerold Duquette is an associate professor of political science at Central Connecticut State University. He is the author of Regulating the National Pastime: Baseball and Antitrust and has published articles and book chapters on campaign finance reform, political parties, Massachusetts politics and political culture, public opinion, and political socialization. Professor Duquette lives in Longmeadow, MA with his wife and four children.
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One Response to Media Speculation about Warren and Brown

  1. Aldika says:

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