Massachusetts voters are today dutifully trooping to the polls – or, more likely, reluctantly straggling to the polls – to choose a new United States Senator.
What are AIM members looking for in a senator? We asked, in a Special Question on our Business Confidence Survey.
AIM is a non-partisan organization, so we didn’t ask about the candidates themselves. We didn’t even ask whether it was important to elect a longtime congressman or a former Navy SEAL.
Here is our question and the responses.
Massachusetts will elect a new United States Senator on June 25th. What we need MOST is a senator who will:
- Speak his mind and take firm positions - 10 percent
- Focus on addressing key national issues - 23 percent
- Work to build bipartisan consensus - 33 percent
- Represent the specific interests of the commonwealth, its people and its businesses - 34 percent
This looks like a hope that Congress will break out of its ideological deadlock, avoid posturing, and get down to business – work together to make progress on matters that have real day-to-day impact on people’s lives and on doing business. It’s in line with what we’ve been seeing in the responses to the regular portions of the monthly Business Confidence Index, and with AIM’s positions on federal issues – most recently, Rick Lord’s call for fixing federal health care reform.
With today’s election, Massachusetts will have had seven different United States senators in less than four years, which is perhaps disadvantageous in a body that rewards seniority. On the positive side, we will probably not have to face another senatorial election until 2016.