This analysis by Nate Silver of how Republicans may reach a "tipping point" on the Ryan budget as there begins a trickle of defections, and how damaging Scott Brown's Politico op-ed was (emphasis mine):
More recently, Senator Scott Brown, the Massachusetts Republican who faces an intrinsically tough re-election battle next year despite his strong personal popularity, made a show of coming out against the bill with a long commentary in Politico yesterday. I don’t know why Mr. Brown chose that particular forum; it is among the most important reads of the morning for thought leaders on Capitol Hill, but is less important for the voters who will actually decide his race next year. (For some reason, candidates seem compelled to draw attention to their most challenging decisions — another example is Blanche Lincoln and her health care vote.) Even so, Mr. Brown’s announcement will make some Republican chiefs of staff very nervous.In an editorial, the Washington Examiner notes that Brown has joined a Republican circular firing squad:
Of the three men's criticisms, Brown's are the most disappointing. They sound less like genuine objections than excuses for a "no" vote that Brown believes to be politically expedient.I cannot emphasize enough that the issue is not that Brown will vote against the Ryan budget. As Silver and the Washington Examiner note, the problem for Republicans is the way in which it was done, in a very a public shot fired across the bow of fellow Republicans.
While I doubt that Brown's op-ed itself influenced the loss in NY-26, it fits a false narrative that we can muddle along with just a few tweaks to the current system, and that the changes proposed by Republicans put seniors more at risk.
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