photo from Law Dork

photo from Law Dork

You could see this one coming. As soon as a local poll on the Massachusetts Senate race showed the Republican dead even among likely voters with Democratic candidate Martha Coakley (now MA’s Attorney General), you knew there would be leaks blaming Coakley for not conducting an inspiring or smart campaign.

Nevermind that a more recent poll by the Boston Globe shows Coakley with a solid 15 percentage point lead. No, the first poll showing Coakley at risk was a perfect opportunity to blame the candidate instead of the real culprits dragging down Democrats everywhere.

And who better than WaPo’s Chris Cillizza to spin the tale with anonymous sources who never mention the real culprits. Here’s how it’s done:

Democrats control both of the state’s U.S. Senate seats, the governorship, all 10 House seats and wide majorities in the state legislature.

And yet, the buzz in political circles over the past week is that state Sen. Scott Brown is rapidly making up ground on state Attorney General Martha Coakley in the Jan. 19 special election to succeed the late Edward M. Kennedy — movement that has Democrats scrambling to ensure they keep what should be a sure thing in their column.

Coakley used her name identification and fundraising edge to coast to a pedestrian victory over Rep. Mike Capuano, among others, in the Dec. 8 Democratic primary. But she has drawn heavy criticism from party strategists in the state and nationally for not doing enough to energize supporters in a political climate decidedly unfriendly to their party.

Nationally? Who are these national critics? Cillizza doesn’t name one. (Is that you Rahm?)

Well, national leaders are Rahm Emanuel, Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, and the President himself, who thinks the Federal Reserve should be run by the guy who missed the housing bubble, failed to regulate the banks and thinks pursuing full employment is a bad idea because it would risk the Fed’s reputation for fighting inflation.

And how exactly can a candidate running for national office “energize supporters” in this climate?

We have a President who breaks key campaign promises at the slightest sign of opposition. He first says he supports a public option to keep the insurance companies honest, but drops it; he opposes taxing health plans then supports it; he first said he wanted to reduce deductions for the wealthy but now isn’t willing to tax wealthy people to help pay to expand coverage; he once said we should bargain with industry for better prices but now thinks cutting sweetheart deals with lobbyists for big drug companies and giving breaks to large hospital and insurance companies is a swell way to control health costs. And his legislative team managed to hand control of what is or isn’t acceptable in the health bill to Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson, after wasting months trying to hand it to Max Baucus, Kent Conrad and Olympia Snowe.

Yes, Martha Coakley will find it tough to energize Democratic voters, but that’s not Coakley’s fault. When you have anchors like Emanuel, Summers, Geithner, Benanke, Reid, Lieberman, Nelson, Lincoln and Landrieu et al. dragging you down, and a President who doesn’t seem to care about breaking his word or notice that he’s now the Party’s biggest problem, it’s a wonder any Democratic voter still cares enough to show up.

You could see this one coming. As soon as a local poll on the Massachusetts Senate race showed the Republican dead even among likely voters with Democratic candidate Martha Coakley (now MA’s Attorney General), you knew there would be leaks blaming Coakley for not conducting an inspiring or smart campaign.

Nevermind that a more recent poll by the Boston Globe shows Coakley with a solid 15 percentage point lead. No, the first poll showing Coakley at risk was a perfect opportunity to blame the candidate instead of the real culprits dragging down Democrats everywhere.

And who better than WaPo’s Chris Cillizza to spin the tale with anonymous sources who never mention the real culprits. Here’s how it’s done:

Democrats control both of the state’s U.S. Senate seats, the governorship, all 10 House seats and wide majorities in the state legislature.

And yet, the buzz in political circles over the past week is that state Sen. Scott Brown is rapidly making up ground on state Attorney General Martha Coakley in the Jan. 19 special election to succeed the late Edward M. Kennedy — movement that has Democrats scrambling to ensure they keep what should be a sure thing in their column.

Coakley used her name identification and fundraising edge to coast to a pedestrian victory over Rep. Mike Capuano, among others, in the Dec. 8 Democratic primary. But she has drawn heavy criticism from party strategists in the state and nationally for not doing enough to energize supporters in a political climate decidedly unfriendly to their party.

Nationally? Who are these national critics? Cillizza doesn’t name one. (Is that you Rahm?)

Well, national leaders are Rahm Emanuel, Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, and the President himself, who thinks the Federal Reserve should be run by the guy who missed the housing bubble, failed to regulate the banks and thinks pursuing full employment is a bad idea because it would risk the Fed’s reputation for fighting inflation.

And how exactly can a candidate running for national office "energize supporters" in this climate?

We have a President who breaks key campaign promises at the slightest sign of opposition. He first says he supports a public option to keep the insurance companies honest, but drops it; he opposes taxing health plans then supports it; he first said he wanted to reduce deductions for the wealthy but now isn’t willing to tax wealthy people to help pay to expand coverage; he once said we should bargain with industry for better prices but now thinks cutting sweetheart deals with lobbyists for big drug companies and giving breaks to large hospital and insurance companies is a swell way to control health costs. And his legislative team managed to hand control of what is or isn’t acceptable in the health bill to Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson, after wasting months trying to hand it to Max Baucus, Kent Conrad and Olympia Snowe.

Yes, Martha Coakley will find it tough to energize Democratic voters, but that’s not Coakley’s fault. When you have anchors like Emanuel, Summers, Geithner, Bernanke, Reid, Lieberman, Nelson, Lincoln and Landrieu et al. dragging you down, and a President who doesn’t seem to care about breaking his word or notice that he’s now the Party’s biggest problem, it’s a wonder any Democratic voter still cares enough to show up.

Scarecrow

Scarecrow

John has been writing for Firedoglake since 2006 or so, on whatever interests him. He has a law degree, worked as legal counsel and energy policy adviser for a state energy agency for 20 years and then as a consultant on electricity systems and markets. He's now retired, living in Massachusetts.

You can follow John on twitter: @JohnChandley