Tuesday, September 28, 2010

2010 Update – Richard Neal (D-MA) Announces Re-election Bid – Opens 2nd Campaign Office - Internal Polls May be Reason for Renewed Efforts by Neal.

Richard Neal (D-MA) the Congressional Representative form the Bay State’s Hampden 2nd District is taking nothing for granted in this year’s mid-term election. Neal, who has held the Hampden Second district seat since 1989, is seeking another term going forward. Neal hopes to be appointed to the Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, of course, that is if the Democrats maintain the majority.
The Campaign Launch was held at a Chicopee restaurant where in the Western part of the district : where Neal spoke for 10 minutes. (Springfield Republican) Neal wanted the voters in the Western Part of the District to know he was taking this election seriously. Apparently, he feels that anti-incumbency is “rhetoric” which can lead to the election of individuals, like Scott Brown, “who must be able to deliver what they promise.” Apparently, the Congressman is not aware of the Junior Senators high approval ratings amongst his constituents. (Which is a tad higher than Sen. John Kerry’s see Washington Examiner). So much for “rhetoric” and “results”.

Meanwhile, over in the Eastern Part of the District, Neal opened a campaign office in Milford, MA and the opening was greeted by Wesley supporters who held a rally across the street. When told that there were 70 Wesley supporters outside in the pouring rain, rallying for their candidate, the incumbent Congressman quipped:

"If my supporters did that I'd be upset. I'd be furious," he said last night. "There are some elementary courtesies we extend."

Apparently, that darn anti-incumbent rhetoric, (or the normal political process that one is supposed to experience during a campaign) is getting under Neal’s skin. The campaign office, which is located a stone’s throw from Neal’s Challenger, Tom Wesley’s home, prompted Mr. Wesley to walk over to the office when it first opened to say hello and introduce himself – Mr. Neal was not present at the time (not being the grand opening) so a few staffers were given a pleasant greeting and welcome to the Eastern part of the district by Mr. Wesley. (Think Officer and a Gentleman).

Speaking of staff – (an anonymous source working within the campaign) it is understood that internal polls may not be what the Congressman would hope, apparently calls to the district (paid polling) find that a large majority of voters find the Congressman who hates the type of “rhetoric” that leads to politicians’ such as Scott Brown, might just prefer a Tom Wesley. (Which, conversely, Wesley must have internals and that may be the reason his supporters (and staff) are so exuberant.)

Neal is in real trouble in the Hampden 2nd. It will be up to the incumbent to assure the voters, without the usual “save social security” rhetoric which is on a mailer every two years, why he deserves to be reelected. There are key areas that voters now do not feel are a priority and one of those is seniority in the Congress or Senate, nor are positions of power in either body. What they are interested in is how the Representative voted on the Health Care Reform Act (Neal-Yes), as well as how well the Representative plays with the other “side”. (Neal votes reliably with the Democrats – see roll call votes Library of Congress). The main reason that Scott Brown was swept into office by voters who crossed party lines, was because he represents all the voters – and that is reflected in how he approaches legislation – crossing the aisle when he feels that it best represents his constituents. Tom Wesley appears to be as reasonable as Brown – thus the angst over in Neal’s camp, and the avoidance of mentioning candidate Tom Wesley by Neal (see the Mass Live article on launch of re-election camping).

The Hampden 2nd District is definitely in play, adding to the angst spreading across Massachusetts districts, (See Globe article where incumbents threaten to quite if the republican’s achieve the majority.)
It remains to be seen if Congressman Neal’s renewed committeemen to campaigning for the District will be too little, too late.

Tom Wesley for Congress: www.tomwesley.com

Richard Neal for Congress (since 1989!) Richard Neal.org

1 comment:

Imjustmusing said...

Not sure if you have met Tom Wesley or not but he is indeed an "Officer and Gentleman"

I personally think Neal is in for a rather rude awakening on November 2. While he may have what he perceives as a lot of support in the west, those of us in the east hardly know him.

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