The underdog

By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  August 13, 2008

“Instead of fighting for their lives, they were fighting for their health insurance,” says Orozco.

Her campaign is shaping her message to make her palatable to the social conservatives in the district who might be ready to ditch Brown. She emphasizes that she is a doctor and small-business owner, who has two sons in the public-school system.

MassAlliance, a coalition of progressive organizations, is already helping with field operations, and others are pitching in as well. More will come, particularly when phone-banking begins in earnest this fall.

And, if they truly come to believe they can beat Brown, groups such as MassEquality, MassAlliance, and the Massachusetts Teachers Association can do their own mailings and literature, to make up for what those close to the campaign concede will be a fundraising gap.

The problem, some Democratic activists say, is that if it does start to look like Orozco has a chance, the state GOP will send in everything it’s got. The party can’t afford to lose Brown, who fundraises for other candidates and the party committee.

Then again, everything the state GOP has isn’t very much these days, particularly compared with what the state Democrats and their allies have at their disposal.  

To read the “Talking Politics” blog, go to thePhoenix.com/talkingpolitics. David S. Bernstein can be reached atdbernstein@phx.com.

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