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Brown Thanks Voters, Signals Party Independence01:53
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Sen.-elect Scott Brown takes a photo with Sandra Curtiss, of Chatham, as he greets supporters in Foxborough at the final stop of his three-day "thank you"  tour across the state. (AP)
Sen.-elect Scott Brown takes a photo with Sandra Curtiss, of Chatham, as he greets supporters in Foxborough at the final stop of his three-day "thank you" tour across the state. (AP)

Friday night found Scott Brown greeting campaign volunteers in this big town. The Falmouth Inn was so packed that you couldn't move. Most of the people who had come to meet the senator-elect were Republicans.

Connie Hackbarth came from Brewster about 45 minutes early, so she got to be squeezed in next to the rope surrounding the stage where Brown would speak. Her expectation of Brown, she said, was "to vote against the health care plan."

"I just wanted to come down 'cause this area was unbelievable for me," Brown said to cheers, "and I wanted to personally come down to the Cape and thank you all for your support."

"Thank you!" the crowd shouted back.

Brown won every town on Cape Cod from Falmouth to Orleans. The Falmouth Inn was so crowded that dozens of people had to wait outside the in a wind so cold it felt like it was burning your skin.

Brown gets into a truck in Chicopee on Friday after kicking off his "thank-you" tour. (AP)
Brown gets into a truck in Chicopee on Friday after kicking off his "thank-you" tour. (AP)

"The fact that this man's walking among us, I think he's getting it," said Mary McKenzie, "and I think maybe he can bring it to Washington and tell them."

"It's like I had to come," McKenzie said. "I just feel like this is a big turning point for us, you know, the fact that someone's standing up for what they believe, you know, because I've been really worried about where our country's been going."

"This is not just with President Obama," she added, "but with President Bush, and it seems like there's a real person that's applying for this position."

Thousands of people turned out like this in towns and cities across the state over the weekend to meet Brown on his "thank-you" tour. The next day, he greeted people in two more towns where he beat his Democratic opponent, Attorney General Martha Coakley. First Saugus, then Dracut, which he took by a two-to-one margin.

Next stop, Worcester, where Coakley beat Brown, but where close to a thousand people turned out to meet him, including Lucy Reposo, from Ashburnham.

"This is the first I actually went out to vote for him, first time," Reposo said. "I'm so lazy, and I never did, and I did for Scott Brown."

On Sunday, he was back in Brown country, in Foxborough, next door to his home town of Wrentham.

At some point during the tour, Brown sat down with Barbara Walters, of ABC News, for an interview broadcast Sunday on This Week. Walters asked Brown about his childhood.

"Your parents divorced when you were a year old," she started to say.

"I'm not going to cry, by the way," he interjected.

Brown's eyes did well up with tears when he talked about how protecting his mother from two of his stepfathers has made him appreciate his wife and daughters.

He asserted his independence when he was asked about President Obama's proposal to give tax credits to businesses that hire new employees.

"If and when this became a bill, would you vote for it?" Walters asked. "Yes or no?"

"Yes," Brown replied.

The plan is opposed by some of Brown's future Republican colleagues, such as Sen. John Cornyn, of Texas. In the interview with Walters, Brown confirmed another stand that puts him at odds with his party. Asked if he's pro-choice, he said, "Yeah."

Brown goes to Washington promising to be an independent voice. This weekend's tour showed that it is a popular voice back home in Massachusetts.

This program aired on February 1, 2010.

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