Brown couldn’t find a principled rationale for his votes if it were staring him in the face. Oh, sure, he’s all “no new taxes” and “no adding to the deficit.” That, supposedly, was why he voted against the unemployment extension – depriving thousands of MA residents of much-needed and economy-stimulating benefits while he touted his own lame alternative that even Republicans didn’t like – and why he had a little diva fit over the Wall Street bill before he royally pissed off his base by finally supporting it and handing President Obama a huge win. But that doesn’t explain why he voted against over $600 million and thousands of jobs for Massachusetts, even though that bill (the FMAP extension/teachers bill) neither adds to the deficit (actually it reduces it) nor raises taxes. In fact, Brown seems to know that, yet he still voted “no.” Check out this hilarious exchange with a reporter, as relayed by HuffPo:
Scott Brown, on why he voted against aid to the states and how it raises taxes but doesn’t really so QUIT MISUNDERSTANDING HIM: “We can’t afford it. I filed a bill, as you know, that would have fully paid for it, and wouldn’t have raised taxes. Businesses are hurting and those are the folks that are creating jobs.”
Reporter Leigh Ann Caldwell: “Can you explain how it raises taxes?”
Brown: “I didn’t say it raised taxes. It actually changes the tax code for businesses and puts more of a burden on them. Obviously, the way that they’re going to try to tax foreign profits on corporations who do business overseas is problematic, especially in Massachusetts where we have a lot of businesses just like that.”
Oh, Scott. Now you’re objecting to a tax code change that closes a loophole used by multi-nationals that send jobs overseas? Are you serious?
Add to that his really pathetic explanation for voting against his own constituent, Elena Kagan, for the Supreme Court.
I believe nominees to the Supreme Court should have previously served on the bench. Lacking that, I look for many years of practical courtroom experience to compensate for the absence of prior judicial experience.
OK, a couple of things. First, I’d say the odds are roughly, oh, zero that Brown would ever use this excuse for voting “no” on a Republican president’s nominee. Second, this rationale is blind to history, as roughly a third of the Supreme Court’s Justices had no prior judicial experience, including some of the most influential – Louis Brandeis, William O. Douglas, Earl Warren and, most recently, William Rehnquist come to mind.
Sadly, one is forced to conclude that Brown is making it up as he goes along. He’s still playing AA-ball, trying to get by according to the rules that were good enough when he was part of a tiny minority in the state Senate. That’s not going to fly in the big show for long.
Next up in the big MA Republican lineup is Charlie Baker. As a public service, we’ve tagged