SASC Member Scott Brown Loses Tough Re-election Fight

Outgoing Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., on the campaign trail before losing his re-election bid to Democrat Elizabeth Warren. (David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Massachusetts GOP Sen. Scott Brown has lost his sometimes-nasty re-election bid to Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren, removing from the upper chamber a close defense-sector ally.

Defense firms poured over $107,000 into Brown’s campaign coffers, more than just about all other congressional campaigns. Only the staunchest defense industry ally, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., got more campaign cash from the “Big Five” firms.

The five biggest U.S. weapon makers wanted to give a financial boost to the moderate Republican, favoring the sometimes-hawkish Brown over the liberal Warren, whom the companies view as a major wildcard.

It remains unclear which GOP senator will fill the Senate Armed Services Committee seat Brown will vacate in January. While Warren might not seek a SASC seat, the Intercepts crew doubts even a liberal senator who hails from a state with such a big defense presence would forcefully and publicly oppose legislation favored by the defense sector.

Still, Senate Democratic leaders will lean heavily on their members — especially the new ones — early in the next congressional session when lawmakers are expected to vote on a massive deficit-reduction bill. Passage of a bill that cuts the deficit by at least $1.2 trillion is needed to void twin $500 billion, decade-long defense and domestic spending cuts.

Warren could find herself torn between the orders of her leadership and supporting a potential GOP-crafted bill that could more easily pass the Republican-controlled House.


John T. Bennett

John T. Bennett

Bennett is the Editor of Defense News' CongressWatch channel. He has a Masters degree in Global Security Studies from Johns Hopkins University.
John T. Bennett