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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Hammer time

Stripped of his attack lines, Scott Brown tried to drop the tax hammer on Elizabeth Warren, but came away with some bad bruises to his claim as a woman’s right activist. 

With moderator Jim Madigan in full control of the verbal sparring, Brown was forced to discuss issues in his third showdown with Warren. And after leading a self-guided tour of western Massachusetts (where polls show he is substantially behind), Brown centered on taxes as his claw
“When you talk about getting hammered, Professor Warren, I suggest you put down the hammer, because it’s your policies that are going to be hurting middle-class families,” Brown said. “It is about whose side you’re on, it is about fighting for the middle class, and I want to continue to do that. "
But Warren, using her ball peen, relentlessly returning to the Brown who claims to be a pro-choice woman's rights advocate but one who is endorsed by Massachusetts Citizens for Life and continues to cite Grover Norquist and Antonin Scalia as role models. 
“He has gone to Washington and he has had some good votes,” the Democrat opened, “but he has had exactly one chance to vote for equal pay for equal work. And he voted no. He had exactly one chance to vote for insurance coverage for birth control and other preventive services for women. He voted no. And he had exactly one chance to vote for a prochoice woman, from Massachusetts, to the United States Supreme Court. And he voted no. Those are bad votes for women. The women of Massachusetts need a senator they can count on, not some of the time, but all of the time.”
Overall, the debate was a genteel affair, thanks to the control displayed by Madigan in parceling out questions asked by voters, not moderators imported from Washington. There were no knockout punches.

We're now left with the relentless media wars, where Brown continues to, well, hammer, Warren's claims as a consumer advocate in the face of overwhelming evidence in her favor. But if her new assault on Brown's claims as a woman's best friend takes hold, he will have exactly one chance to redeem himself in an Oct. 30 debate.

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