CHARLOTTE, N.C.  (CBS) – Elizabeth Warren hit prime-time TV last night with a typically passionate recitation of the anguish of the working classes and denounciation of the predatory practices of the ruling classes.

That’s her message, and she delivers it well.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

But if you passed up the football game to watch it, Warren’s speech had one somewhat curious omission – any mention of her opponent, Scott Brown.

In a background briefing for reporters, a Warren campaign aide said the speech was supposed to be an endorsement of President Obama and his agenda, not a Massachusetts Senate race stump speech, although it’s hard to believe a name-check of her opponent would have been inappropriate.

But the move also tells you something about the Warren campaign strategy that’s been apparent for awhile.

She wants to nationalize this race, capitalize on the higher-than-normal turnout of a presidential race in a very blue state, and take advantage of the distaste many local voters have for the Republicans in Congress.

If November 6 is a referendum on them, Scott Brown is in big trouble. That’s why he’s so aggressively promoting the notion that he’s part of a bi-partisan solution, not part of the partisan problem.

I’ve heard Senator Brown disparagingly note this nationalization effort a couple of times, as if it was some sort of out-of-towner’s putdown of the locals, but he really has no grounds for complaint.

National backlash against health-care reform and squishy anti-terror tactics helped Brown win the seat in the first place two years ago, not to mention the national money that poured into his campaign.

If this all sounds like inside baseball, believe me, the outcome could turn on it.

Will those undecided voters decide to scratch an anti-Wall Street, anti-Republican itch, or honor another local tradition – keeping the likeable hometown incumbent on the job?

We’ll answer that one sometime late at night on November 6th.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

Jon Keller


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