Thursday, February 18, 2010

Did Scott Brown just step in it?

You had to figure that at some point someone was going to bring politics into the domestic terror attack in Austin, Texas. But count me among those who did not expect Scott Brown would be the first.

Apparently Senator Brown appeared on Fox News earlier today and when asked for his reaction to the event, he said this:
Well it's certainly tragic and I feel for the families obviously being affected by it. And I don't know if it's related, but I can just sense not only in my election, but since being here in Washington, people are frustrated. They want transparency, they want their elected officials to be accountable and open and talk about the things that are affecting their daily lives. So I'm not sure that there's a connection, I certainly hope not. But we need to do things better.
Really? I probably should give the Senator the benefit of the doubt because, despite his meteoric rise, he still is a novice on the big stage. But it sure does seem like Senator Brown is saying that the suicide pilot had a point, and if elected officials were just a little more accountable and transparent that this sort of thing wouldn't happen. Fox News host Neil Cavuto sensed it too, because he gave Brown a chance to walk back a little. Brown didn't bite:
Cavuto: Um, you know invariably people are going to look at this and say, well, that's where some of this populist rage gets you. Isn't that a bit extreme?

Brown: Well, yeah, of course it's extreme. You don't know anything about the individual. He could have had other issues, certainly. No one likes paying taxes, obviously. But the way we're trying to deal with things and have been in the past, at least until I got here is, there's such a logjam in Washington. And people want us to do better. They want us to help solve the problems that are affecting Americans in a very real way.

And I think we, I'm hopeful that we can do that, with a lot of the things that are coming forward. At least what I'm hearing through, and speaking with my colleagues this seems to be a diff[erent] feel...there's kind of a message that was sent with my election, the fact that I was elected by a substantial margin taking the former Ted Kennedy's seat. They want difference up here and I'm hopeful that's going to happen.
Senator, the attack today had nothing to do with "a logjam in Washington," and I certainly hope that the attacker didn't believe in "the kind of message that was sent with [your] election."

I saw this on a couple of progressive Washington blogs this evening and figured it wouldn't become much, but then a Google search of Joseph Stack (not a search of Scott Brown) turned up this piece from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. If this gets past the blogosphere and into the mainstream, Brown could be facing some heat for the first time

I think we may be hearing Senator Brown clarify things tomorrow.

Updated: CBS News has also picked this up.
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