Politics

03.24.14

This Is Scott Brown’s Granite State Of Whatever

Former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown’s comeback bid in New Hampshire is off to a rocky start.

Former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown is just one week into his latest Senate campaign--this time in New Hampshire--and his foot has already found its way into his mouth.

Outside the Red Arrow Diner in Manchester, Brown asked a rhetorical question to the Associated Press, "Do I have the best credentials? Probably not. 'Cause, you know, whatever. But I do have strong ties to this state."

This would be perplexingly nonchalant remark from any candidate for the U.S. Senate, let alone one trying to convince a whole new state of voters that he deserves their vote and is qualified to represent them.

Brown isn’t a total stranger to New Hampshire His parents were stationed there at the Pease Air Force Base before his birth, his grandparents lived there during his youth, and both his mother and sister reportedly live there now. Inside the Red Arrow Diner, the AP reports that Brown told a voter "carpetbagger is a derogatory term here," since many of the Granite States residents are not natives.

The former Senator, who gained national fame winning the special election for Ted Kennedy’s seat in January 2010, is the frontrunner for the Republican nomination to challenge first-term incumbent Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen in November. Although New Hampshire is a swing state, Shaheen was considered a shoo-in for re-election against a rather undistinguished field until Brown threw his hat in the ring earlier in March.

During his three years in the Senate the moderate Republican often found himself at odds with the far-right as he tried to protect his political flank in deep blue Massachusetts. Brown was the first Republican Senator to support a federally imposed ban on assault weapons, and he openly opposed "don't ask, don't tell." Yet these efforts to boost his centrist appeal were not enough and Brown was defeated by Elizabeth Warren in 2012.

But Brown was undeterred by the defeat and has quickly gotten back on the horse. He jumped into the Senate race on March 13, just three months after registering to vote in the state and after an even longer flirtation with a bid.

While most candidates who cross state lines to run for Senate and then admit they don’t have the best credentials for office might be in trouble, Brown is capable of playing it cool and coping with his gaffe. After all, this is the man who once famously tweeted "bqhatevwr."