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GOP ‘losing the battle but winning the war’?
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By Rick Holmes
June 27, 2013 5:10 p.m.

I got a kick out of the headline on a story about Mass. Republicans’ wishful thinking in today’s MWDN: Gomez lost the battle, but is the GOP Winning The War?
In the Milford Daily News, the spin is the same in the headline: “Gomez loss may spell future wins for GOP.”
Reading the quotes from Republican leaders Ryan Fattman and Paul Craney, I was reminded of the Monty Python movie in which the crusader, his arms and legs having been cut off, still loudly contends he’s about to take the fort. Rob told me yesterday he sees signs of a GOP opportunity in the Gomez vote. My interpretation, expressed in an editorial today, is that Mass. has a nationalized electorate in which voters who trend liberal outnumber those who trend conservative. The actual candidates in a campaign (especially for federal office) only affect results at the margins.
For the record, it’s now been more than 10 years since a Republican won any office in Massachusetts higher than state senate.† If you’re going to win a war, don’t you have to win a battle sooner or later?
Brian Herr of Hopkinton, one of the more level-headed Republicans around (too level-headed to win the House primary in 2010) got it right: “”Gomez didnít win in enough local towns and thatís really a get out the vote, apathy and party dysfunction problem.”
I’m trying to look at this not as a gloating partisan, but as an analyst. Not only do the Republicans face an ideological disadvantage, they have a weak bench (After Brown, Gomez was the best they could do?), and a AA organization playing against John Walsh’s major league team. Someday that may change, but it didn’t change Tuesday.

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