Scott Brown or Bust? Maybe Not.
With President Obama expected to nominate Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry for secretary of state -- possibly as soon as Friday -- most also expect newly defeated Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown to seek the seat in a special election. And Brown, who would clear the GOP field, certainly looks interested in another Senate bid. But there's also an open governor's seat in the state in 2014, and the junior senator could still pursue that option. For Republicans eyeing Kerry's seat, if not Brown, then who? The GOP has a thin bench in the state, but here are some of the other options if Brown surprises us.
-- Former Gov. Bill Weld: He's back. After living in New York for over a decade, the former GOP governor has returned to Massachusetts -- and has been getting some buzz. Weld Boston Globe, has said he supports a Brown run -- but is not ruling out a bid of his own if Brown passes on the race. He ran for this Senate seat before, in 1996, when he challenged Kerry in a tough race.
-- Former state Sen. Richard Tisei: Rep. John Tierney's 2012 challenger, like Weld, has said he would support a Brown run -- but hasn't ruled out a bid if Brown doesn't jump in. The openly gay former state legislator ran a solid House campaign, and though he unexpectedly lost against the embattled Tierney in November, it seemed much more about the Mitt Romney drag in Massachusetts than the candidate's fault.
-- Former Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey: Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick beat Healey in her 2006 bid to succeed Romney as governor, and hasn't been involved much in Massachusetts Republican politics since. But Healey recently told MSNBC she is "looking at the race -- if it develops -- with interest." Healey self-funded her 2006 bid to the tune of about $10 million, and could likely self-fund again in a special election.
-- Andy Card: The former White House chief of staff to George W. Bush, a Massachusetts native, has been mentioned as a potentially competitive candidate. Card considered running in the 2010 special election, but passed on a bid after Brown jumped in. However, Card is currently serving as Acting Dean of the Bush School at Texas A & M.
-- More likely to run for governor is businessman Charlie Baker, the 2010 GOP gubernatorial nominee, who by all accounts is focused on another run in 2014.