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Opinion: Why Boston College shouldn't vote Scott Brown

They say that practice makes perfect. If that’s the case, outgoing Senator Scott Brown must be an expert campaigner, because he’s been doing it a lot lately. 

Though he technically has yet to declare himself a candidate for John Kerry’s Senate seat (I suppose, John Kerry’s seat is still technically occupied by John Kerry), Brown would have no trouble winning the Republican nomination and would be an early frontrunner to win another two years in the Senate. 

In light of that and in light of the fact that Scott Brown is one of the most hypocritical politicians on the planet, I thought a run-down of his record on issues important to Boston College students would be appropriate.

Remember, this is the guy who ran with the slogan: “He’s for us.”  It was on his bumper stickers, in his commercials, and was childishly written on the whiteboard outside my room in Duchesne West (thanks a lot, Ben). 

 But unless you’re a millionaire, a billionaire or a big oil company, Scott Brown is not for you. 

If Scott Brown were for students, he wouldn’t have voted to double student loan interest rates. If Scott Brown were for women, he wouldn’t have voted against Equal Pay twice and for allowing employers to deny their female employees access to contraception. 

If Scott Brown were for the environment, he wouldn’t have voted against ending subsidies to multi-billion dollar oil companies twice, voted to expand offshore oil and gas drilling and voted for the Keystone XL pipeline. 

If Scott Brown were for teachers, firefighters, or police officers, he wouldn’t have voted against a bill to support jobs for over 400,000 teachers and thousands of first responders. 

And while we’re on the subject of police officers, guess which senator took more money from the pro-gun lobby than anyone else in Washington?  Yup, the independent, bi-partisan, not-beholden-to-anyone Scott Brown. 

And trust me when I tell you that these are just a few of Brown’s particularly heinous votes.

The campaign veteran at work

Why did he vote against these common-sense measures?  Simple, he had to protect his real constituents. 

He voted against student loans because it was financed by closing a major corporate tax loophole (he later voted for it when it was financed by slashing health care funding). 

He voted against teachers and first responders because it was financed by a 0.5 percent surtax on income over $1 million.  He voted against Equal Pay and access to contraception because it would have been a “burden” on corporations. 

Whenever the radical GOP has asked for support for measures hurting workers, women and middle class families, Scott Brown has raised his hand and said count me in.

But what else should we expect from somebody who’s signed Grover Norquist’s pledge never to raise taxes? Twice, Scott Brown voted against extending tax cuts for 98 percent of Americans and 97 percent of small businesses, both times refusing to act unless the people at the top got another handout they didn’t need. 

He voted against a common-sense measure that would have made sure billionaires paid the same tax rate as their secretaries. He’s demonstrated that he’d rather see taxes go up on everybody than raise revenues slightly to pay for important economic opportunity programs for the middle class. 

It should come as no surprise, then, that he was named one of “Wall Street’s Favorite Senators” and that some of his biggest campaign contributions came from JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, and Bain Capital.

When Scott Brown throws his hat in the ring this time around, he’ll tell you he’s bi-partisan, that he’s for us. But don’t listen to what he says; look at what he’s done.

We need real leadership, leadership that’s the same when the cameras are on as when they’re off, and Scott Brown is not that leader. On Nov. 6, the myth of independence peddled by the despicably negative Brown campaign was roundly rejected by Massachusetts voters, and we can do it again. 

It’s going to be a turnout game:  Scott Brown got more votes in 2012 than in 2010, but won less than a quarter of voters who hadn’t voted in the special election.  If we go to the polls in 2012 numbers this time around, we will win. 

Remember, despite what he says, Scott Brown has had numerous opportunities to vote for you and he’s refused every time.  If he won’t vote for you, why should you vote for him?