A new poll from Boston's WBUR suggests that Elizabeth Warren is in excellent shape as she approaches the 2018 midterms.
Warren is viewed favorably by 55 percent of Massachusetts voters, according to the survey, and the Democrat has advantages of at least 23 percentage points when faced off individually against her four declared challengers....
And she certainly seems to have the right message.
Most voters polled said a candidate who made addressing the cost of health care a major priority would make them much more likely to back the candidate, while 42 percent of voters said a candidate in favor of repealing the Affordable Care Act would make them much less likely to get their support.
Nearly half of survey respondents -- 48 percent — also said that if a Senate candidate made standing up to President Trump a major priority, it would make them much more likely to back the candidate.
Just 27 percent of Massachusetts voters view the Republican president favorably, compared with 66 percent who have an unfavorable view of him.
She's doing a lot better than she was right around Inauguration Day,when only 44% of respondents in a WBUR poll thought she deserved reelection, while 46% believed that Massachusetts should "give someone else a chance."
So how's she doing against potential challengers?
But that comes with an asterisk:
(When the survey went into the field, Ayyadurai was running in the Republican primary, with the other three candidates; he now plans to run as an independent.)
That means that Ayyadurai -- a troll who pals around with the alt-right -- will be in the race all the way to November. I told you about this guy a few months ago. He was born in India and has said, "I think only a real Indian can defeat a fake Indian." A real class act, Ayyadurai sent Warren a DNA kit for her birthday.
Ayyadurai also claims he invented email, and dismisses those who say email existed a decade before he says he invented it, even if they're scientists who were actual users of what they quite sensibly regard as early email. Ayyadurai sues news organizations that dispute his version of the facts -- he won a $750,000 settlement from Gawker in a suit the L.A. Times says was financed by Peter Thiel, and Thiel won't commenton reports that he financed a similar Ayyadurai lawsuit against Techdirt.
... Ayyadurai has made numerous appearances on the conspiracy outlet Infowars; he had also appeared on the outlet before declaring his candidacy. On Infowars, Ayyadurai has received glowing praise from the outlet’s prominent personalities. In one interview, host Alex Jones called Ayyadurai “the example of what we want in Congress, in the presidency, in the statehouses.”
His campaign has also granted one-on-one interviews with fringe right-wing websites and media figures such as Lucian Wintrich, White House correspondent for The Gateway Pundit....
The Rebel Media’s Gavin McInnes, a media personality who leads an Alt-Right fight club called the “Proud Boys” and has used his platform to spread misogynistic rhetoric, also got an interview with Ayyadurai.... Ayyadurai granted an exclusive interview to the pro-Trump website Breitbart.... Right-wing blogger Cassandra Fairbanks and conspiracy peddling internet troll Jack Posobiec have also given Ayyadurai their endorsements.
Ayyadurai ... picked up an early endorsement from former Red Sox pitcher and Breitbart News personality Curt Schilling, who is ideologically in the same camp as the alt-right.... “As of today, from where I sit, you’re my choice for Senator of the state of Mass. in 2018 and it’s not even close,” Schilling tweeted. “#Fauxcahauntas.”
... Increasingly, he's closed ranks with the leaders of these political misfits, finding allies including Mike Cernovich.... “People who meet Shiva are excited,” Cernovich tells me. “He is charismatic and inspirational. He needs to do a video message every day because the more people see him, the more they like him. He’s fearless and committed.” Jeff Giesea, one of the minds behind the social media army that helped elect Trump, also cohosted Ayyadurai’s political coming-out party.
It's a Murderers' Row of right-wing trolling.
Ayyadurai has also been in talks with the Mercers, hoping they'll throw some money his way.
Ayyadurai won't beat Warren -- if anything, he'll split the anti-Warren vote in November with the Republican nominee and help her to a bigger victory. But he'll be memifying opposition to Warren for months -- how effectively I can't say.
Mainstream national Republicans want to rough Warren up before 2020. They'll be working in sync with the alt-right.
Originally published at No More Mister Nice Blog