The fake 2012 Massachusetts senatorial race between newly elected Sen. Scott Brown and MSNBC host Rachel Maddow is really heating up—er, sort of.
Earlier this week Brown sent a fundraising letter to supporters all over the country claiming the “political machine” in Massachusetts was vetting “liberal MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow” to oppose him in the state’s election in 2012. Maddow quickly fired back, announcing that she had no plan to run for office while denouncing Brown for making up the story just to raise money. On Friday, Maddow approved a full-page ad in The Boston Globe to make her plans known to Brown’s constituents.
"It's standard now for conservatives to invent scary fake threats to run against—things like the made-up 'death panels' in health reform, or the fake controversy about the president's birth certificate,” she wrote. “I'm running this ad not because I'm running against Scott Brown—I'm not, he made that up—but because he's the senator for all of us, and maybe this will make him think twice the next time he wants to smear one of his constituents to raise money out-of-state.”
NEWSWEEK left a message seeking comment from Brown, but no response was received as of this posting.
It really says something that two years in advance and a few months after what GOP supporters called his “Massachusetts Miracle” election, Brown is already worried about competition, even if it is just to bring in more money. As the first Republican to be elected for Senate in in 40 years and a with no vote on the health-care-reform bill—not to mention his more moderate tendencies could turn off the far right—he could face a tough reelection campaign. The rumor of Maddow’s run might be false, but it's clear Brown’s fear of the next election isn’t.