What Would Scott Brown Do?
In case you weren’t keeping track — don’t worry, that was a joke! — Scott Brown, the short-time Massachusetts senator and shorter-time political celebrity, has relocated to New Hampshire, where he might run for the Senate again . . .
On March 14, Brown announced his intention to form an exploratory committee in regard to that Senate seat from New Hampshire, animating his latest period of speculation. Ten days earlier, a Politico story led with a classic time capsule for our present news environment: “Scott Brown on Tuesday night denied a Fox News anchor’s tweet that he has decided to run for Senate in New Hampshire.”
In that tweet, Greta Van Susteren said she was “certain” that Brown was running. This prompted Brown, who worked for Fox News until last week, to email Politico with a semiclarification. “I am not sure who she talked to, but it was not me.” He signed off with the standing caveat of our time: “It is all just speculation.”
In his piece Mark Leibovich reveals the painful truth about Scott Brown (R-Elsewhere): He’s a Superhypothetical, a common political disease with no known cure. (See: Sarah Palin, Donald Trump.) Leibovich defines Superhypotheticals as “those professional noncandidates whose franchises depend largely on people speculating about what they might run for and their own willingness to engage in public indecision about it (all while assuring us, of course, that they are flattered and humbled by our interest).”
(They also provide year-round employment for The Great Mentioner.)
Unfortunately, today’s crop of Superhypes fall far short of the “figures of mystique, stature and accomplishment” of the past. (See: Mario Cuomo, Colin Powell.) And that goes double for Brown, who turned out to be even more of an empty barn jacket than we thought.
All the more reason to check out Leibovich’s piece. Downturn Scotty is always good for a laugh.