Friday November 16, 2012

The leap from state Senate to U.S. Senate is a long one but Barack Oba ma made it, so it is not unpre cedented. Should Senator John Kerry accept a Cabinet position with the second Obama ad ministration, Pittsfield Demo crat Ben Down ing says he would consider throwing his hat in the ring to replace him. And why not?

Senator Downing’s name emerged as a possible candidate for the seat in a column Tuesday by Aaron Blake of The Washing ton Post. Republican Senator Scott Brown, who just lost his re-election bid to Elizabeth Warren, is regarded as a sure contender and there are several familiar Democrats who could bid to replace Senator Kerry, including Attorney Gen eral Martha Coakley, a Berkshire native who lost to Mr. Brown in the 2010 special election to replace the late Senator Edward Kennedy. U.S. Repre sentatives Steven Lynch, Michael Capuano and Edward Markey are seen as potential candidates, and Mr. Blake concludes his list with Mr. Downing, who has been in the state Senate for six years.

Mr. Downing says in today’s Eagle that he isn’t sure how his name came up in the Washington press, but at age 31 he would appeal to the youthful voters who had an impact on this month’s national election. There is no dominant figure like Ms. Warren in the potential Democratic field and no reason why Mr. Downing shouldn’t take the Washington press up on the idea, should Senator Kerry move on.