Last October, U.S. Sen. Scott Brown drove his iconic pickup to Gloucester for a little campaigning, making visits to Virgilio’s for a sandwich and talking fishing with the Times.
With his announcement yesterday that he will not be a candidate in the upcoming Senate special election to fill outgoing John Kerry’s seat, it’s a stop that’s unlikely to be repeated. Who might show up in the future was a matter of speculation yesterday, but one Republican who appeared to be mulling a run also visited Gloucester in October: Richard Tisei, who was running for Congress at the time.
Brown’s bombshell set off a swirl of speculation about who might mount a serious run at the Republican nomination, with names such as former Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey of Beverly, former Gov. Bill Weld, and state Rep. and former judge Dan Winslow’s names floated by local Republicans. A less well-known candidate, former county commissioner Douglas Bennett of Dorchester, put out a statement saying he plans to seek the Republican nomination.
Healey could not be reached for comment.
Tisei, a former state senator who narrowly lost to Salem Democrat John Tierney in the 6th Congressional District last fall, said in a statement yesterday that Brown’s announcement came as a surprise to him, and called Brown’s decision not to run “ a great loss for the commonwealth.”
Tisei did not close the door to a run, saying: “More of the same is not an option.”
“Today, our country faces many challenges,” Tisei’s statement said. “It’s a time when we need to find common ground in order to begin to address the very real problems that threaten our future. Scott’s exit from the race was obviously unexpected. That said, in the coming days I will be talking with family, friends, and supporters to consider the best role that I can play in helping to bring new, alternative leadership to Washington.