the truth about the Massachusetts Brown vote

Contrary to many Republican assertions, the defeat of the Democratic Senate candidate earlier this month was not a statement against the Obama agenda.

A new Washington Post/Kaiser/Harvard poll regarding Massachusetts voters

suggests that while the election was a “protest of the Washington process,” it was not a rejection of progressive policy. Only 11 percent of voters, including 19 percent of Brown voters, want Brown to “stop the Democratic agenda:”
– 70 percent of voters think Brown should work with Democrats on health care reform, including 48 percent of Brown voters.
– 52 percent of voters were enthusiastic/satisfied with Obama administration policies.
– 44 percent of voters believe “the country as a whole” would be better off with health care reform, but 23 percent believe Massachusetts would be better off.
– 68 percent of voters, including 51 percent of Brown voters approve of Massachusetts’ health care reform.
– 58 percent of all voters, including 37 percent of Brown voters, felt “dissatisfied/angry” with “the policies offered by the Republicans in Congress.”

What people in other states don’t realize is that Massachusetts already has (and Brown voted for it) a health care system similar to the basics of the proposed national health reform. The new Republican Senator Brown was/is against the national effort NOT because it won’t work, but rather because Massachusetts already does what a national health care system would do for the rest of the county.

In the words of Senator Brown:
BROWN: It’s not good for Massachusetts because any time government is trying to put a government option there with directly competing with what we’ve done already here, it may be good for other parts of the country, but for us where we have 98% of the people insured already, government should not be in the business of running health care…We took actually money that was coming from the Federal government and also from the uncompensated health care pool, things we were giving hospitals were in fact to pay for this. And obviously there’s an employer contribution and a purchaser contribution. We gave through the Connector and various types of plans, Commonwealth Care, we provided pretty good plans for a lot of folks that wanted that type of care.

You can listen to Brown’s position in an interview here.

The above linked site also explains

Brown implied that the federal government needs to play a role in reforming the health care system and stressed that the federal dollars have helped insure residents who “don’t have any care whatsoever.” “Until they change the federal rules regarding health care and health care coverage for all, and we have to continue to support the folks hare in Massachusetts to keep them healthy,” he said

I didn’t vote for Brown, but if he is really going to represent me and the other almost-half of the Massachusetts citizenry (who voted for the Democrat), I hope he really is, as he has claimed, an independent Republican and that he will opt to legislate without his previous provincial motives.