Daily Archives: June 19, 2012
The most highly anticipated, most closely watched and most expensive Senate race in the nation is taking place in Massachusetts. The incumbent is the former Tea Party/Sarah Palin darling and centerfold model, Scott Brown and his Democratic challenger is the architect of the newly established Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Elizabeth Warren. This particular race is considered to be so pivotal because it provides one of the best opportunities for the Democratic Party to pick-up a U.S. Senate seat so as to maintain (and possibly strengthen) its majority status.
Massachusetts of course, has historically been one of the most staunchly Democratic of states. It is one of the bluest of blue places in the nation. When Senator Ted Kennedy passed away in 2009 however, a special election to fill his seat was held in January 2010. As the result of out of state Tea Party money and some local Democratic Party apathy and overconfidence, Republican Scott Brown won that election. The very next day, Massachusetts Democrats vowed to re-energize themselves so as not only to recapture Kennedy’s Senate seat in 2012 but to ensure that Democrats hold on to every elected statewide office.
As the month’s passed, Scott Brown’s popularity began to wane both nationally and in Massachusetts. The radically conservative Tea Baggers were angered at Brown as the result of his siding with Democrats on some crucial Senate votes such as on an expensive jobs bill and he has repeatedly sided with Democrats on cloture votes which served to defeat Republican filibusters of Democratic bills. He has also lost luster amongst Bay Staters because he has been legislatively insignificant (as compared to Kennedy) and because he has been seen by many as a person who is willing to enable a child predator to continue offending. In his 2011 memoir, Against All Odds, Brown admitted that he was sexually molested as child at a local summer camp, but he has refused every request from law enforcement officials to identify the criminal so that he may be apprehended and brought to justice.
The strengthening wave of Massachusetts Democratic momentum and the ebbing tide of enthusiasm for Scott Brown became most evident during the 2010 national midterm elections. Brown’s seat was not up for election, but most every other statewide seat was in contest. The startling result was that in an election where Republican candidates won in a landslide of national elections and captured control of the US House of Representatives, the Brown-endorsed GOP candidates lost every single statewide race in Massachusetts. This made the Democratic party even stronger in that state than it was prior to Brown’s election. Suddenly Scott Brown’s formerly iron-clad grasp on the Senate seat was showing signs of weakness. What the Democrats needed however, was a strong challenger.
Enter Elizabeth Warren. The Harvard Law School professor and architect of the newly formed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). She brought instant momentum in the form of national support (and the out of state money which comes with that) and her high profile energized Massachusetts Democrats. Warren, who has never participated in an election and never held a political office, has managed to remain even with Brown in most every recent poll. Her tactic has been to stress the fact that throughout her career, she has fought to help the working/middle class (as a personal bankruptcy attorney) and to hold Wall Street and the Big Banks accountable for deceptive practices (see the CFPB). Meanwhile, she has characterized Brown as a errand boy for the wealthy and his Wall Street supporters. Warren never misses an opportunity to remind folks that conservative Forbes magazine named Scott Brown as one of “Wall Street’s Favorite Congressmen” (Brown also posed nude in Cosmopolitan).
But we digress. Today’s topic is how Scott Brown managed to put his foot in his mouth on at least two occasions this week.
Brown’s first blunder surfaced in his unfortunate response to President Obama’s decision to allow illegal immigrants to avoid deportation if they can prove they were brought to the United States before they turned 16 and are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED or served in the military. Brown, like most Republicans was caught off guard by Obama’s popular decision. The Boston Globe reports that Brown “said he opposes the change, suggesting it would set off a new wave of illegal immigration. He said he would be open to allowing young people who have chosen military service to obtain citizenship in recognition of their sacrifice. ‘Rather than sidestepping Congress on this major policy shift, the president should work with us toward a bipartisan, long-term solution,’ Brown said.”
Scott Brown apparently has a very short memory, however. He seems to have forgotten that President Obama already tried working with Congress when he offered the “bipartisan, long-term solution” known as the DREAM ACT. Brown must also have forgotten that he voted against that bi-partisan long term solution. So much for Brown’s working with Democrats and the President on the immigration issue.
Brown’s second hypocritical gaffe this week involved his conditional acceptance of participation in a televised debate with Warren. Vicki Kennedy, Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s widow, offered to host the debate at The Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate. The proposed debate would be moderated by former NBC anchor Tom Brokaw. Elizabeth Warren immediately accepted the invitation. Scott Brown however, conditioned his acceptance upon the condition that Vicki Kennedy would refrain from endorsing or campaigning for Warren. In a letter to the Institute, Brown’s campaign manager Jim Barnett wrote: “In order to proceed, we need to know that in keeping with the spirit of neutrality expressed in Vicki Kennedy’s letter that she will not endorse or otherwise get involved in this race…”
It is understandable and commendable that Scott Brown wants the debate format, organizers and moderator to remain neutral. Problem is, Scott Brown has not made any similar demand upon the host and moderator of another debate in which he has agreed to participate. Boston radio station WBZ and on air host Dan Rea have proposed a radio debate between Brown and Warren. Warren has not yet accepted the offer but Brown and the host have vowed that the event will take place. Brown went so far as to say he will debate an empty chair if Warren doesn’t show up.
Host and moderator Dan Rea however, is anything but neutral. He is a rabidly conservative talk radio host who has admitted on air that he is a friend of the Brown family and a huge supporter of Scott Brown’s candidacy. Additionally, Rea berates everything about Elizabeth Warren on nearly every one of his broadcasts. To be fair, shouldn’t Scott Brown also demand that Dan Rea “will not endorse or otherwise get involved in this race”? Do you think he will do so? Don’t count on it.
Scott Brown is a hypocrite.
Vicki Kennedy has announced that she rejects Scott Brown’s demand that she stay neutral in the race. She responded to Brown through a letter Tuesday to the two campaigns from the institute.
“This non-endorsement pledge is unprecedented and is not being required of any other persons or entities. To us, such a pledge seems inappropriate when a non-media sponsor issues a debate invitation.”
Thereafter, Scott Brown backed out of the debate. His campaign issued the following statement: “We respect Vicki Kennedy’s decision but we regret that we cannot accept a debate invitation from someone who plans to endorse Scott Brown’s opponent,” Brown’s campaign manager Jim Barnett said in a statement Tuesday. “The Kennedy Institute cannot hold itself out as a nonpartisan debate sponsor while the president of its board of trustees gets involved in the race on behalf of one of the candidates.”
This is a particularly strange response from Brown inasmuch as he participated in a debate without objection sponsored by the same folks in 2010 when the the very same Vickie Kennedy had endorsed his then opponent, Martha Coakley.
Somebody, please call a WHAAAAAAAAMBULANCE for Scott Brown.
What a joke! Will Scott Brown back out of the debate sponsored and moderated by Dan Rea inasmuch as the host is anything but neutral and is a Scott Brown supporter? Don’t count on it.
Please remember to click on the song link below to familiarize yourselves with the tune and to have more fun singing along with today’s song parody.
Downtown song link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sku-1hqA5xw
(sung to the Petula Clark song “Downtown”)
If Mass. is your home
And you are full of baloney,
You must surely be – Scott Brown
You have your worries,
With no clothes in snow flurries
You’re a nudist boy – Scott Brown
You’re popular in the woods but were voteless in the city
Your term is only two years Scott, and isn’t that a pity?
You’re sure to lose
You’ve got some Mitt Romney hair
But it grows down on your buttocks, we’ve seen when you’re bare, and so
Scott Brown – politics of hate when you’re
Scott Brown – voted right out the door
Scott Brown – private life’s waiting for you
(Scott Brown, Scott Brown)
Don’t wear a frown
As the Tea-Baggers surround you
They are friends not foes – Scott Brown
The “Party of No”
Is just the place that they go to
Where their hatred grows – Scott Brown
Just charm them with the rhythm of your naked bossanova
They’ll be bare-assed with you too before the night is over
They’ll take off their underwear
Then they’ll forget all their troubles, forget all their cares like you,
Scott Brown – not erudite or bright
Scott Brown – every nudist’s delight
Scott Brown – you’re gonna be alright now
(Scott Brown, Scott Brown, Scott Brown)
(Scott Brown, Scott Brown)
And you might find that your behind will help ingratiate you
With Larry Craig who loves the view and has a gentle hand to
Guide you along
You two would make quite a pair
You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares dear bro
Scott Brown – you’ll get kicked out the door
Scott Brown – Won’t take a minute more
Scott Brown – Private life’s waiting for you
Scott Brown (Scott Brown) Scott Brown (Scott Brown)
Scott Brown (Scott Brown) Scott Brown (Scott Brown)
(repeat and fade out)