Who Should I Vote For: Scott Brown or Elizabeth Warren?

I recently got some news which makes it possible for me to stay in MA! Very happy about that. Now, we’ve got an exciting election coming up!

You can give your political perspective on where you think I’m wrong in your replies (I’m a young guy relatively new to politics, what do I know?), but I’ll just give you an idea of where I stand: I’m a centre-left guy who believes in getting stuff done. I want there to be responsible regulations on Wall Street and I like it when the government creates jobs. As for paying down the deficit…my understanding is that important social programs are probably going on the chopping (“reform”) block, but I think we also need the rich to pay in more (bit of a higher tax rate and actually close the loopholes…how come everyone I hear on TV is for this but it never actually gets done!?) and military reductions.

So I ask the much more experienced voters here at Straight Dope: Who should I vote for? Elizabeth Warren is certainly willing to fight Wall Street, and she’s proven her meddle over the years. But Scott Brown is one of the most moderate Republicans in Congress, and maybe we need more people like that to convince the GOP to work with the Dems?

In my opinion, based on the priorities you’ve laid out, Warren is the better candidate. The only thing that inclines you to Brown is a sort of inchoate desire to assist moderate Republicans, which is laudable but I can’t see how it would overcome the specific policy goals you’ve mentioned.

I think the premise that the presence of moderate Republicans would cause the party to work with Democrats is flawed. Brown can’t do it, Snowe can’t do it. The Republicans have no interest in working with Democrats. Voting for Brown would increase the chance that McConnell would wind up with the Majority Leader post. Do you see anything in McConnell that indicates the least desire to bargain in good faith with Democrats? I urge a vote for Warren based on the fact that the only good Republican is one that is out of office.

It sounds like Warren fits the criteria you’ve listed pretty well.

I understand your reluctance to vote out a moderate Republican like Brown - it would be nice the senate had more of his party like him. But the truth is, moderate Republicans are getting pushed out everywhere. And as long as they have a big enough minority they can continue to block just about any attempts at legislating the issues you support. So it sounds like your best interests are served by voting in Warren and hoping the Dems can expand their majority.

Warren, for all the reasons already mentioned.

Brown. Moderate Republicans are a good thing. You’ll grow out of that “leaning left” stuff as you gain experience and wisdom.

If I thought Brown would be part of a moderate wing of the GOP, then I would probably vote for him (if I lived in Mass and had your political outlook).

Since, instead, the moderate wing will be him and Susan Collins I’d say vote for Warren.

As others have said, the Republican base and the Republican party continues to move right at a rapid pace. If you’re an incumbent Republican and you’re not heading right at a suitable pace, there’s a good chance your own party will try to primary you.

It’s admirable that you want to support a moderate Republican who trends towards centrist in the hopes of swinging the party around. But that won’t happen. It won’t happen because the Republican Party won’t look at the MA race and come to the conclusion that voters want more centrist candidates. Further, Scott Brown has neither the power nor the inclination to take a stand against his own party in the hopes of bringing them back towards the center. So your goals, while noble, are ultimately futile.

Instead, you should be looking towards your ideals. Not only does your political viewpoint allign with Warren’s, but voting her into office allows for greater possibility of your ideas for good government coming to fruition.

Unleash Elizabeth Warren! And I’m not saying that just because she’s so hot!

A moderate Republican that is too spineless to stand up to the leadership isn’t a functional moderate Republican.

Also, the shift to conservatism that often accompanies middle-age isn’t based on wisdom. It’s based on the acceptance of nonsense misinformation and a healthy dose of “I got mine.”

Modern conservatism has completely eviscerated the expression, “if you are young and not liberal, then you have no heart; but if you are old and not conservative, then you have no brain.” If you are old and conservative, you have lost many higher brain functions.

If you do not feel you have enough information to make an informed choice, the responsible thing to do is not vote. Your political views seems inchoate and informed more by a mushy version of received liberalism than actual wrestling with the issues. There is plenty of time before the election to read up on the issues and make an informed decision.
I enjoyed your Warren pun, good stuff.

That may be true now, but even historically, it’s not been so much that people become more conservative as they age, but that what conservativism is itself changes. A young person right now who embraces the ideals of 2012 is a liberal, but if thirty years from now they continue to embrace the ideals of 2012 instead of the ideals of 2042 (whatever those will be), they’ll be conservatives by 2042 standards.

One can be informed, but seek advice from the older and wiser to ensure one isn’t fooling oneself or isn’t missing any information; what’s the old saying, “standing on the shoulders of the teeming millions.” :stuck_out_tongue:

Also, one can think that the pragmatic solutions to the most important issues largely are on one side of the aisle without being brainwashed by “received” wisdom. I happen to think the Dems have been wrong on some things the GOP was right about (you can PM me for details if you’re interested, I have no interest in appearing to apologize for my endorsement of a Dem worldview by listing out their flaws here), but on the biggest issues – you know, like Republicans always say, “let’s talk jobs and the economy” – I think the Dems are right.

MA voter here-Brown is NOT a Senator from MA, he’s a Senator from Wall Street! He’s the reason Wall Street reform is as weak as it is.

I don’t think you have been brainwashed it is just that as someone who lives in Massachusetts you are a product of your environment as we all are. The consensus political opinions in Massachusetts are mushy liberal and that is what you seem to have picked up.
For example, you say that you want “responsible” regulations of Wall Street. What does responsible mean in this context? There are a large and ever growing amount or regulations already applied to Wall Street. The more regulations on Wall Street the more it benefits the incumbents who have decades of experience dealing with regulations and have extensive contacts within regulatory agencies. Is favoring the old and big firms at the expense of small and new firms a good outcome for regulations?
Also regulations can increase systemic risk by creating single points of weakness. A single firm making a mistake in pricing risk and bankrupt that firm but as long as other firms are pricing the risk accurately then it is no big deal. However if a regulation forces all firms to incorrectly price risk then all of the firms could go down and implode the economy.
The more regulations you have the more opportunity there is for regulatory arbitrage. The whole purpose of Wall Street is credit allocation which is a vital part of the economy. Regulatory abitrage is just pure rent seeking. Would an increase be a good outcome of more regulations?
Perhaps you have thought about these issues and I have overreacted to a seemingly glib OP.
Now on the matter at hand, I believe that a paradox of government is that those who would best wield power are often those who would least seek it out. The ambitious and striving can not turn off their thirst for self aggrandizement while in office and would use the power given them for their own greater glory. Thus while ambition is a prerequisite for office we should beware those who are consumed by it.
Ms Warren was a very ambitious academic who wrote a book about bankruptcy. Here is what a colleague wrote about her scholarship "Most of their study replicates several earlier research publications. These are hardly mentioned. The writers make extravagant and false claims to originality and priority of research. There appear to be serious errors in their use of statistical bases which result in grossly mistaken functions and comparisons. Some of their conclusions cannot be obtained even from their flawed findings. The authors have made their raw data unavailable so that its accuracy cannot be independently checked. In my opinion, the authors have engaged in repeated instances of scientific misconduct. "
I am sure you are already aware that Ms Warren lied about her racial background in order to obtain preferential treatment in her career and then tried to cover it up when it could no longer help her.
Someone who has repeatedly shown willingness to lie and cheat to advance her career is not someone who should be trusted with power. As someone older and wiser, my advice is to not vote for Elizabeth Warren. If you approve of the way Scott Brown has behaved as Senator vote for him, if not vote third party or skip voting for this race.

Citation appears missing. Hmmm. Wonder why? Well, the Google monster is right at hand, let’s see what we can find…ah! Breitbart! What a surprise! One can hardly doubt the integrity of such a site. But the quotes don’t match, that can’t be it, can it? Oh, Legal Insurrection, now we are getting to the real scholarly stuff here.

Come now, Puddlegum, there’s no reason to be embarrassed about your sources, simply because of association with one of the most prolific partisan lying sacks of shit ever!

And lest one think that Legal Insurrection is too dry, too formal, too academic…well, no. Their critique of Ms Warren’s academic work wouldn’t be complete if they did not include as proven fact any allegation that might cast doubt upon Ms Warren personally…

So, stay tuned, same Breitbart time, same Breitbart channel. Can’t fit it all in at once, so tune in next time for more of the hideous crimes of Lizzy!

I do so enjoy scholarly, non-partisan critiques. Bring us one, sometime, won’t you?

You assume too quickly and therefore WADR your extrapolations are illogical and wrong. I just picked it up, didn’t grapple with the views of those who disagree with me, wot? From 2006-2010, I lived among conservative Orthodox Jews, both in yeshiva and in college. Before that, any area I’m aware of the politics of, was conservative. I think most my friends, and particularly the ones politics comes up with, are either right libertarian or conservative. I’ve sparred a few times with a Republican who is currently studying economics in grad school, and I’ve had good conversations with a friendly president of the local libertarian-conservative campus club, as well as the heads of the local campus Tea Party. Here in MA, I’ve attended speeches from Robert Spitzer, Jimmy LaSalvia, and David Horowitz (I haven’t heard any liberal speeches here, with the exception of one from Jeremy ben-Ami.).

I g2g, be back later.

should be Spencer, lol.

So Warren’s ambition is a black mark, thus it’s better to vote for the guy who is already a senator?

Yeah, I’m sure he never really wanted the job; just took it as a favor to a friend. What a guy!