Republican MA Senator Scott Brown in Hot Water over Comment about Democratic Senate Candidate, Elizabeth Warren

Posted by erik devaney

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It all started innocently enough. At a recent Democratic Senate Debate at UMass Lowell, a student panel asked the candidates how they paid for college after mentioning that incumbent senator, Scott Brown, was able to fund his education through posing nude for Cosmopolitan magazine.

Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren’s off-the-cuff response, “I kept my clothes on,” elicited hearty laughs from the audience as well as extensive coverage from the media.

In an off-the-cuff response of his own, Senator Brown may have taken the joke a bit too far.

While being interviewed on a WZLX radio program, the DJ asked, “Have you officially responded to Elizabeth Warren’s comment about how she didn’t take her clothes off?”

The Senator let out a few chuckles and then answered, “Thank God.”  This prompted the DJ to laugh in return and blurt out, “That’s what I said!”

With those two words, “Thank God,” Senator Brown ignited a firestorm. The logical interpretation of the comment, of course, is that Senator Brown was insulting Warren’s physical appearance by thanking God that she never posed nude.

In a recent statement, Massachusetts Democratic Party executive director, Clare Kelly, dubbed Senator Brown’s comment “the kind of thing you would expect to hear in a frat house, not a race for U.S. Senate… Scott Brown’s comments send a terrible message that even accomplished women who are held in the highest esteem can be laughingly dismissed based on their looks.”

While Kelly was clearly surprised and enraged by Scott Brown’s frat house-esque rebuttal, other Bay Staters are interpreting the unfolding of events a little bit differently.

“Honestly, I was not surprised with Senator Brown’s comments,” Robert Gignac told New England Post. Gignac was part of the UMass Lowell focus group that came up with questions for the Democratic senate candidates at the recent debate. “I took Elizabeth Warren’s, ‘I didn’t take my clothes off,’ comment as a jab at Brown and he was just swinging right back at her. I highly doubt it will hurt his campaign as his image is well-known and this comment isn’t exactly out of the ordinary for him. The only people that would really be offended are those that are already Warren supporters.”

Fellow UMass Lowell student, Michael Hubbard, who was on the student panel that posed the infamous “how did you pay for college?” question to Warren, shares the same view as Gignac; the view that Senator Brown’s comment wasn’t exceedingly malicious, it was just return fire.

“I think that Senator Brown’s retort to Professor Warren’s comment at the debate was perfectly placed,” Hubbard told New England Post. “Warren intended to hit below the belt with her comment that she kept her clothes on in an attempt to make Brown appear short in character and stir the pot, so to speak. I think based on her initial comment… Brown replied correctly. His comment was short, sweet and humorous which to me shows a dignified approach to a situation that he no doubt could have started a war over.”

So, New England Post community, what do you make of this exchange between Warren and Brown? Was Warren out-of-line in making her initial comment? Did Brown cross a boundary with his rebuttal or was it a “dignified approach,” as Hubbard contends? Leave a comment below!

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  4. Elizabeth Warren to Address Mass. Labor Day Event
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Posted by erik devaney on Oct 7 2011. Filed under Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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