Scott Brown will announce his candidacy for US Senator representing New Hampshire, challenging Democratic incumbent Jeanne Shaheen, according to several news outlets.
You’d be forgiven if you thought you read that before. Here’s a rundown of the many starts, stops, head fakes and hints Brown has made in recent months.
Moving to New Hampshire, December 17: Brown sold his Wrentham home and moved to Rye, N.H., where his family owns a vacation home. He also said he would register to vote in the state.
Brown had been making noises about the move for a while, so much so that one Granite State Republican was already frustrated at Brown’s lack of an announcement.
"Honestly, it's baffling what he's doing. I don't know what his end game is. I think if he wants to run for the US Senate he should get in the race, said Dave Carney, a longtime national Republican strategist and consultant who lives in Hancock, NH. "New Hampshire voters are not interested in begging candidates to run for office," he said, noting there were already three other GOP US Senate candidates working to lock up support.
Giving up his TV career, February 18: According to The Boston Globe, Brown was no longer under contract with Fox News, where he served as a commentator since February 2013. But did that mean he was running for office? Brown and a Fox spokesperson both declined to say. Fox had previously said the contract would be terminated if Brown formed an exploratory committee to test the waters in New Hampshire.
Announcing his exploratory committee, March 14: Brown took the stage at a high-profile state Republican party event and announced the formation of an exploratory committee. After the announcement, Brown launched his “Main Streets and Living Room Tour.” But the tour was just part of his exploration of a possible New Hampshire run, not an actual annoucnement that he was running, because he still hadn’t formally announced the launch of a campaign
That same day, Fox News announced Brown was no longer affiliated with the network. The change in status, according to Politico was made due to Brown’s forming an exploratory committee.
Defending against carpetbagger charges, March 25: While touring the state, presumably as part of exploring the possibility of a campaign, Brown made a less-than-forceful defense of his ties to New Hampshire:
"Do I have the best credentials? Probably not. "Cause, you know, whatever. But I have long and strong ties to this state," Brown told The Associated Press during a weekend visit to the Red Arrow Diner, a political landmark in the heart of the state's largest city. "People know."
Clashing with Shaheen, March 30: Brown and Shaheen clashed immediately after a Greek Independence Day event in Manchester, N.H. (Which was not a campaign stop for Brown, remember, because he still wasn’t a candidate in the race.) Shaheen took a shot at Brown’s voting record while representing Massachusetts in the Senate. Brown responding, saying Shaheen’s sniping was designed to take focus away from her own record.
Announcing his plan to announce a run, April 2: The exploratory committee must have found what it was looking for. Brown announced he would make a formal campaign announcement “sooner rather than later.” Again, he announced that he would announce. The “announcement” came during Brown’s appearance on “New Hampshire Today” on WGIR radio.
Announcing the announcement date, April 7: Brown still hasn’t announced, but on April 7 announced he would make his formal announcement on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.Scalese can be reached at Roberto.Scalese@globe.com or via Twitter @BertoScalese.