Ezra Klein on Martha Coakley ’75:

The White House was trying to avoid this, it seemed. They didn’t want the risk of campaigning for Martha Coakley in Massachusetts and losing the seat anyway. But that’s not as bad as not campaigning for Martha Coakley and losing health-care reform. So Obama heads to the Bay State on Sunday. But this is about more than just Obama’s presence. If you look at the rationale Mike Allen is getting from the administration, Obama is heading down there because Coakley can be “saved.” Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod “called around,” apparently.

My hunch is that Obama’s visit is as much about changing the narrative as energizing the Bay State base. By taking the risk of going down to Massachusetts, the White House is signaling that they think Coakley will be able to win — or else why would they dare go? And that’s important for tripping up Brown’s momentum, as the media narrative was shifting towards something closer to anointment. It also nationalizes the election a bit. Now it’s a fight between Obama and the Republicans, not just Coakley and Brown.

But boy, has Coakley been a mess of a candidate.

Blaming Coakley for losing to Brown is like blaming Dick Thornburgh for losing to Harris Wofford. Do any EphBlog readers really believe that Mike Capuanno (the very picture of a Massachusetts machine politician) would be doing any better?

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