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Brown Kicks Off Re-Election Bid 2 Years After Special Election Victory03:47
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Describing himself as a lawmaker who likes to make friends and not to fight, Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown formally launched his re-election bid Thursday night. He touched on many of the same themes as he did in his 2010 campaign.

On the two-year anniversary of his upset victory in the special election for the Senate seat long held by the late Democrat Edward Kennedy, Brown told hundreds of supporters at Mechanics Hall in Worcester that he is still a political outsider running against a Democratic establishment.

“Two years ago you sent the establishment a very powerful message that still resonates today," Brown said. "We won two years ago because we respected voters enough to give them a choice. And as I said many times in that special election, it is your choice and it is still the people’s seat.”

"I don’t worry about the party line. I don’t get caught up in the petty fights. I always remember why I’m there and who sent me."

Sen. Scott Brown

But in 2010, Brown was a 51-year-old lawyer and little-known state senator from Wrentham who hit the campaign trail in a barn jacket and pickup truck. Now, with a Senate voting record and top-selling memoir, Brown is considered one of the most popular politicians in the nation. But he said he has maintained his independence and is still an underdog.

“I’ve told the voters I wouldn’t be just another loud angry partisan because Washington has too many of those already, trust me. I promised to be an independent voice for you because Washington has too few of those serving right now," he said. "I don’t worry about the party line. I don’t get caught up in the petty fights. I always remember why I’m there and who sent me. I am still nobody’s senator but yours."

As for specifics, Brown said one of his main unfinished fights is to try to repeal President Obama’s health care law. He also specifically mentioned his leading Democratic opponent, Harvard University law professor and consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren.

“My likely opponent, Professor Warren, is a talented, hard-working accomplished academic. She’s got the other side pretty excited. She talks about how she is a 'rock thrower' and prefers to leave 'blood and teeth' on the floor," Brown said. "That sure doesn’t sound like the kind of compromise and progress this country needs right now. Listen, I’m a bridge builder not a rock thrower.”

The latest polls show Brown and Warren in a tight race and both have raised millions of dollars. Some analysts predict this could be one of the most expensive Senate races in U.S. history. Representatives of the Brown and Warren campaigns meet Friday to discuss the possibility of signing an agreement to try to limit the type of negative third-party advertising that has dominated the GOP presidential campaigns.

This program aired on January 20, 2012.

Deborah Becker Twitter Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.

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