Gabriel Gomez won a three-way GOP primary in Massachusetts for the nomination for U.S. Senate, getting more than 50 percent of the vote. He beat more experienced pols; he’s a political neophyte. He is also a decorated Navy Seal, a successful businessman (who is partially self-financing his race) and politically moderate (he has said he supported President Obama in 2008 and agrees with him on guns and immigration).
He’s running against U.S. Rep. Ed Markey, a Democrat who is easily painted as a staid pol and insider against the more dynamic, exciting candidate. After nailing down the nomination, two polls showed him trailing the much better known Markey by only single digits. It is still an uphill climb for any Republican who has to win 60 percent to 70 percent of independents. But a competitive race and a chance to knock a seat off the Democratic majority has the National Republican Senatorial Committee doing cartwheels.
As in 2009-2010, Republicans hope to gain governorships in New Jersey and Virginia and pick up a special Senate race, setting up a huge victory in the 2014 midterm elections. If Gomez can pull an upset and show that the GOP can feature another Hispanic lawmaker, in Massachusetts no less, the party will get a huge boost that will translate into solid fundraising and turnout.
So for all that, we can say, well done Mr. Gomez.