Though it was considered a foregone conclusion that the seat would remain in Democratic hands, Republican Scott Brown surprised everyone by winning the Senate seat left vacant by the death of Ted Kennedy. Here are some of the reasons pundits are giving for the defeat:

  • Thrill-seeking Massachusetts residents had never seen a Republican in real life, let alone voted for one
  • Brown created 25 local jobs by keeping his pickup truck in tip-top shape
  • 95% of voters recalled a friendly classmate from some point in elementary school named Scott Brown
  • In an embarrassing incident, Coakley accidentally called Curt Schilling a "Yankee fan," Larry Bird a "Lakers fan," Tom Brady a "Colts fan," and the late Ted Kennedy a "brain cancer fan"
  • Press photos of Brown in a hard hat outnumbered those of Coakley in a hard hat by a staggering five-to-one margin
  • Most Democrats stayed home during the election to sew hemp necklaces and fix their solar-powered roofs
  • Voters finally getting around to condemning Kennedy for Chappaquiddick
  • Coakley's cranial circumference fell far short of what Massachusetts voters have come to expect from a senator
  • Massive cultural and political shift to the left did not actually happen