Warren vs. Brown: Mass. Voters Don’t be Duped

To the Editor:
“No Man Can Serve Two Masters.”

The essential meaning here is that when one tries to serve two masters at the same time whose ideas/beliefs conflict, that person too often ends up being disloyal to one of them. Accordingly it follows that Scott Brown, who has voted too often, on too many important economic and social issues in support of the new, extreme right Republican Party, cannot be truly loyal to the beliefs of the majority of the people of Massachusetts.

His words say he is bi-partisan, independent, but his actions and voting history tell us where his heart is. It is not with us, the people he’s supposed to be representing.

For example: In 2011 he voted against three job bills for police, firefighters and teachers in Massachusetts, when many people in our state were out of work. In 2012 he voted against the Buffett rule which would have required millionaires to pay a higher, fairer tax rate.

Twice he voted to repeal Obamacare. He voted for a radical budget proposal that would require cuts in in Medicare and Social Security. He voted for continuing subsidies to big oil companies. He co-sponsored legislation denying birth control health insurance for women. He opposed equal pay for equal work for women, calling it too much of a “burden.”

He also tries from time to time affect a bi -partisan, independent persona. For example: Brown’s political ad which tries to create the false impression that he was the major impetus, the one person responsible for The Stock Act which makes it illegal for any congressional member from acting /profiting from insider stock trading. The truth is however, that it was already practically a done deal drafted by other legislators (Lieberman/Collins).

Thus it is safe to assume that he figured: why not join in and co-sponsor another similar bill and use this “really-unnecessary, really-non-affecting –anything,” support as fodder for his reach-across -the -aisle image?

However, most tellingly, Scott Brown has done something which unequivocally defined him; which revealed his heart of hearts; which removed any claim he might have as being bi-partisan and independent. He signed a very radical pledge called the Americans for Tax Reform, in which he promised two things: First, never to raise taxes for any reason. Second, All new government revenues cannot come from closing tax loopholes or deductions unless matched dollar for dollar with cuts in government spending.

Please follow that it all boils down to this: Government cannot raise taxes to meet its obligations. It must get all new revenues from cutting programs or eliminating existing tax loopholes/deductions. Scott Brown had to know, that in signing this pledge, he would be effectively handcuffing himself to one position: Cut government programs and/or eliminate tax deductions or tax loopholes for the government to realize new revenues.

Some crucial questions now arise: Cut what programs? Eliminate whose tax reductions? Protect whose tax loopholes? The answers become obvious when we find that Grover Norquist and his extreme radical right Tea Party placed these handcuffs on legislators who agreed with them; who now would become their accomplices; those legislators who would, indeed, now champion their extreme-right agenda!

Signing this pledge not only places Scott Brown squarely among the ranks of these extreme right Republicans, but it forces him to relinquish significant independence in his voting.

To underscore the gravity of Brown’s pledge in supporting the Republican agenda, it is necessary that we understand that the Republicans of today are not of the stature, nor the persuasion of Eisenhower, Reagan, or George H. W. Bush. The extreme right has infiltrated and dominated Republican decision-making.

Republicans have been transformed into no-compromise obstructionists. These extreme right-wingers don’t want to engage in any constructive, cooperative, negotiation with Democrats. They have drowned out the voices of moderate Republicans.

Their one, (publicly-stated) driving passion, above all other concerns, is to end President Obama’s administration and install their own chief executive who will sponsor their agenda. They don’t believe in government policies and tax codes which take away their wealth and power. T

hey don’t believe in programs for the middle-class and poor, like public education, job training, because after all, they don’t need them. Hmm, so what programs do you think they will want to cut? Whose tax loopholes/deductions will they want to keep and protect, at significant cost to the middle-class and poor?

To summarize: The new Republican Party doesn’t believe in a level playing field, fairness, equal opportunity for all Americans. An inconvenient truth: Scott Brown’s representation has in effect, made the people of Massachusetts too often, defacto supporters of these extreme-right Republicans.

Fellow citizens of Massachusetts we have to consider some things before we vote: First, We have to look beyond the barn coat and the pick-up truck. Though we can personally like Scott Brown and identify with him, we have to remember we are electing a Senator. We are not looking for someone to have a beer with.

Second, He was quite right when he once said in essence, that the Senate seat did not belong to Ted Kennedy; it belonged to, us, the people. Unfortunately he in fact, has transferred too much ownership of our seat from us, to them, the right-wing Republican Party.

When we read his slogan, “He’s for Us,” know the,” Us” he’s really talking about. Know who he’s really, ”for.”
We may safely conclude that Scott Brown’s support of the extreme right Republican agenda makes him the wrong person to be advancing the needs/ interests of most of us in Massachusetts. His true leanings and voting decisions disqualify him as being our best advocate in Washington, for he has chosen to serve another master.

Charles Santagati
Lowell MA

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