Category Archives: Mass Politics

Are National Trends “Hobbling” Coakley?

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Of Sweethearts and Nothingness

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Our new home

Now that we have moved to WGBH, all future posts can be read at

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MassPoliticsProfs Is Moving to WGBH

Dear Readers:

After three plus years of independent blogging about state and national politics, is moving to We are excited about this move because we believe it presents a wonderful opportunity to expand our audience and to improve the content of the blog. In our earliest discussions of this move with WGBH News senior editor Peter Kadzis, he described the culture of WGBH as a “convener” of informed ideas and commentary. The MassPoliticsProfs think we’ll fit right in.

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Welfare and Charlie Baker’s Problem with Women of Color

Charlie Baker had a bad week.  And I mean a really bad.  Baker dropped his ad firm just as  recent polling showed a 10 point lead for Democratic opponent Martha Coakley.  Then he called a female reporter “sweetheart” as she asked him legitimate questions about Roger Goodell given the NFL’s abhorrent handling of violence against women. Even Baker’s “Women for Charlie” group, which many women find so dismissive, had to be second guessing themselves.

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Those Rational Non-Voters

Some people see low primary turnout and say why; I see low turnout and say, why not?

I know, I know – I’m a political scientist and I should be urging all to the polls. I’m not qualified to enter into dialogue with my public choice theory colleagues but let me say that perhaps voters stayed home on primary day because they are rational.

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How Polls Influence the Campaign

My post last week Polling as a Commodity in a Saturated Market generated some interesting comments in the 140 character world of Twitter. I’d like to indulge in a few extra characters for some of the issues that arose. Important questions arose about whether anyone outside the community of political junkies even notices polls, whether polling influences or simply measures attitudes, and polling and citizen engagement.

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Today’s installment of campaign farce-ocracy: nonpartisan voter ed

If you’re wondering whether  a 501 (c) 4 can jump the shark, take a look at the Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance’s recent voter education effort.

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Facebook Forecasting and the Curious Case of Scott Brown

Today we welcome back UMassAmherst political science doctoral candidates Matthew MacWilliams, Edward Erikson and Nicole Luna Berns and their Facebook Forecast Model for an updated prediction on the Brown-Shaheen race and an important challenge Brown poses for their model.

This week’s forecast shows Senator Jeanne Shaheen still ahead of Scott Brown in New Hampshire, but Shaheen has dropped from 55% to 52%. The Scott Brown candidacy in New Hampshire presents an interesting outlier challenge to our Facebook Forecasting Model. In fact, there is no other candidate in the history of Senate campaigns quite like Brown. Why?

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Coakley, Brown, & Baker and the difference between Senate and Guv elections

Success for Martha Coakley, Scott Brown, and Charlie Baker this November may depend on a proper appreciation of the difference between US Senate and gubernatorial elections.

Posted in Mass Politics, New Hampshire Politics, U.S. Politics | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments