“Turns out that losing has been good for Scott Brown’s political image,” the Boston Herald reported earlier this week. You don’t say:
A new UMass Lowell/Boston Herald poll shows the former GOP senator is much more popular now than when he lost his re-election race in November and is in a strong position to run for governor in 2014.
Six in 10 Massachusetts voters have a favorable opinion of Brown and say they are very or somewhat likely to back him if he runs for governor next year, according to the poll of 589 registered voters.
Brown’s unfavorable rating has dropped dramatically since his loss, from 39 percent in early November to just 24 percent now, the poll shows.
The other potential GOP gubernatorial candidate, Charlie Baker, who lost to Gov. Deval Patrick in 2010, is not faring so well. Just 22 percent have a favorable view of him, while two-thirds of voters say they haven’t heard of Baker or have no opinion of him.
What to make of this? For starters, I can’t imagine Scott Brown passing up an opportunity to run for governor in 2014. His decision to bow out of the Massachusetts special election was somewhat surprising, of course, but understandable. Essentially, if he had run for Secretary of State Kerry’s now-vacated Senate seat and won, he would have had to run again for re-election in 2014. And that, in turn, would’ve meant four U.S. Senate campaigns in less than five years. I don’t even think the president would enjoy campaigning that much.
But with 60 percent of Massachusetts voters (remember, this is a frustratingly blue state) giving Brown -- a Republican -- two thumbs up, why shouldn’t he run? Sure, he’s got a nice, cushy gig over at Fox News and probably enjoys spending additional time with his family, but the man has a chance to become governor. Who could pass that up? Certainly not a guy who said during his concession speech last November that “defeat is only temporary,” right? We’ll see.