Hometown boy made good Senator Scott Brown delivered the line of the night at Monday's televised Massachusetts Senate debate with Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren. "I'm not a student in your classroom," he told the Harvard Law School professor after she attempted to interrupt his response to her own minute long attack on his record, which Brown claimed was a misrepresentation.
Brown's well delivered line highlighted the difference between the elite Warren and regular guy Brown. It was a similar difference between Brown and Democratic Attorney General Martha Coakley that propelled him to a surprise special election victory in the 2010 Massachusetts Senate race.
Brown criticized Warren for carrying on an extensive law practice representing the interests of her large corporate clients, but refrained from attacking her for her law license problems.
Minutes before the debate began, Warren released an extensive list of law clients, which William Jacobson noted, "unwittingly confirmed" his claim that she had an extensive law practice which required her to obtain a Massachusetts law license, which she never secured.
As the Boston Globe reported, the list is an extensive and impressive array of some of the country's largest corporations.
The second debate began on the same note as the first, with Brown attacking Warren on the character issue. Brown pointed to Warren's continued false claims of Native American heritage and refusal to release her personnel records to disprove allegations she used those false claims to advance her career.
Warren defended herself with the same line she's used for months, stating that since her mother told her when she was a child that her heritage was Native American it must be true. She then went on to claim improbably that the entire controversy was based upon her response to a question that she "misheard."
"[Senator Brown] is just wrong. I misheard a question at a very noisy press conference. I came back, I answered it when I understood it and that's it. To try to turn this into something bigger is just wrong."
Warren committed a major gaffe when she was unable to name a single Republican Senator who will be in office when the new Congress convenes in 2013 that she will be able to work with. When asked to name a Republican Senator she would be able to work with, she responded "probably Richard Lugar."
Brown reminded her that Lugar wasn't going to be in the Senate, and the audience laughed.
The debate was moderated by NBC's David Gregory, host of Meet the Press
, well known for his liberal bias. At times the event appeared to be a two on one tag team wrestling match, with liberals Gregory and Warren ganging up on Brown.
Brown, however, held his own, as most post-debate analyses confirmed. A poll by the liberal Boston Globe showed that those who viewed the debate were equally split between Warren and Brown as to declaring the winner. A poll by the more conservative Boston Herald showed Brown scoring a resounding victory by a three to one margin over Warren.
The most recent poll has the race statistically tied. A WBUR/Mass. Inc. poll of 504 Massachusetts likely voters, conducted between September 26 and September 28, gives Elizabeth Warren a 2 point lead, 46% to 44%, with 9% undecided. The difference is within the margin of error.
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