Brown was greeted with a warm reception of supporters waiting outside for his arrival.
U.S. Sen. Scott Brown says he has visited the area more than any Senator in recent history.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — U.S. Sen. Scott Brown is using his election campaign to assert his independence as one of the nation's most bipartisan politicians.
Brown kicked off campaigning last week and stopped in at the Ralph J. Froio Senior Center to meet with voters on Wednesday. There the Wrentham Republican assured voters in the heavily Democratic region that he is not a "rock thrower" and can work with Democrats.
"I am doing exactly what I said I would do, which is to read the bills and see how they affect Massachusetts, our country, our debt and our deficit, and vote. I am the most bipartisan person in the delegations by at least 20, 25 points and probably one of the most in the entire United States Senate," Brown said. "At a time when we need problem-solvers and not rock throwers, that's a good thing."
Brown propelled to victory in the 2010 special election with help from Republicans nationwide, a victory that shook the political structure. Shortly after, the rightest of the right-wingers had their hopes crushed by Brown's voting record. Yet, that support came mostly because of his opposition to the national health care bill, now known derisively as Obamacare, and that he has not wavered on.
"I will look you right in your eye and tell you, the only people who are cutting half a trillion dollars, that's $500 billion, from Medicare is the Democrats when they rammed through the health care bill," Brown said.
While health care may not have gotten him clapping at Tuesday's State of the Union address, Brown said he was clapping for some of President Barack Obama's policies such as immigration reform and the insider trading bill. But when it comes to taxes and deficits, Brown leans right.
"There are so many things we agree on and if we can put the partisanship aside, we'd be a much better country," Brown said.
That independence is what Brown will emphasis in the 2012 campaign, which is shaping up to be against Elizabeth Warren. Warren has already scared most Democratic candidates out the ring and garnered national attention.
Brown returned to the senior center after visiting it a year ago.
"I'm certainly going to set the record straight and make people aware of it that may not know. Some of them think 'oh, it's all the Republicans fault,' and in reality, its the ideologues and the rock thrower's fault down there," Brown said. "Professor Warren said she wants to leave blood and teeth on the floor and she doesn't want to compromise ... We are Americans first and we need to work together to solve our very, very real problems."
While Massachusetts is considered one of the Democratic strongholds, Brown isn't convinced that it is a "blue state." The state has voted for Republicans besides him including former Gov. Mitt Romney, who Brown is supporting in the presidential election. That's one of the things Brown loves about the state, the residents vote for people and not for the parties they represent, he said.
In the Berkshires, Brown is hoping to fare better than his last campaign against North Adams native Martha Coakley. The only Berkshire town Brown won then was Otis.
Recognizing the ever-present feeling of exclusion here, Brown pointed his background of living in Dalton, eating at Teo's and driving up and down North Street. He has visited the Berkshires more often than any U.S. Senator in recent history, he said. Mayor Daniel Bianchi greeted Brown with appreciation that he "knows how to get to Pittsfield."
However, there were also a one or two missteps in that regard by Brown on Tuesday such as when he said the Berkshire Wind Project on Brodie Mountain was still not operating because of permitting red tape. The residents were quick to point out that the turbines are currently operating.
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Call it partisan, but he is lying through his teeth about the $500 million being cut from medicare by the big scary Democrats and Obamacare.
The $500 million is SAVED by eliminating the subsidies to private insurance companies who have demonstrated the Republican "Medicare Advantage" plans that they crammed through a few years back to try and privatize medicare CANNOT COMPETE with the costs or efficiencies of actual medicare.
You can claim to be above and beyond the partisan fray, but when you tell a party patented lie to scare senior citizens, you do not get a free pass from the "Nice-guy, Middle of Political Road Club".
It is his actions, not his words that define him - not breaking the filibusters on federal judges and other nominations (more stalled than ever in history by the Republican minority in the Senate), his opposition to a healthcare plan that he voted for when he was a state senator, reversal on his own jobs bill at the request of his party leader, the fact that this congress is the least productive in modern history, etc... that put the lie to the notion that Senator Brown is an independent based on breaking ranks twice in two years.
It's time for all media to stop being stenographers.
"Medicare is being used as a piggy bank by Democrats, with $575 billion in payment cuts used to finance two massive new entitlement programs in Obamacare. And this April, the president proposed taking another $480 billion out of the program to lower the deficit.
Payments to providers will be cut so deeply that seniors will find it harder and harder to get care. Doctors will stop taking Medicare or go bankrupt. A whopping 87 percent of doctors say they will stop seeing or will restrict the number of Medicare patients they see, further shrinking the pool of providers and further restricting access to care.
The powerful, 15-member Independent Payment Advisory Board will use price controls to meet ever-elusive spending targets. Rationing is inevitable, especially of newer medicines and technologies." Grace Turner, May 2011
Anyone, senior or otherwise, who isn't scared is brainwashed or not paying attention.
Grace Marie Turner is an right-wing-welfare shill whose Galen Foundation is funded by the same right wing billionaires that brought us Americans for Prosperity, National Commission on Economic Growth and Tax Reform, etc...
Their real goal is the flat tax, which they claim will put enough money in every American's pocket to buy all the insurance they could possibly need.
And I have a bridge to sell you when you come into all that money.
It is her job to scare you so that certain very rich people can pay less in taxes. It's that simple.
I'm not sure why my comment chastising the bona fides of Grace Turner and right wing corporate funded Galen Institute did not appear after a day, but I will try again.
Grace Turner and her "non-profit" are nothing but a front group that claims that implementing a flat tax and creating tax incentives for people to buy health insurance is the right way to go about reform. She has been doing this since "Hillarycare" was proposed in the mid 90s. It has been her job to scare the crap out of citizens every time a a competing health plan comes along simply to try and kill it, lest it actually work and her funders lose an opportunity to rig the system in their favor.
And if you, or anybody else, thinks that the Democrats would screw over Medicare and single most powerful voting block of the electorate, senior citizens, you are not a serious political commentator.
Contrary to their stated mission, The Galen Institute is about letting the super rich pay the same income tax rate as a street sweeper. Every quote you read from her has to be viewed through that lens.
The state is holding a special election to fill the seat vacated by John F. Kerry, who has been confirmed as U.S. secretary of state.
The state primary is Tuesday, April 30. The last day to register to vote or to change party affiliation for the primary is Wednesday, April 10. Enrolled voters may only vote in their party primary; unenrolled voters may select a primary to vote in without changing their status.
The special election is scheduled for Tuesday, June 25. The last day to register to vote in the election is Wednesday, June 5.
To register to vote, one must be at least age 18 by the date of the election, a U.S. citizen and a resident of the municipality in which you are voting.