Scott Brown, under pressure from left, votes for regulatory bill


Sen. Scott Brown voted with Democrats again Thursday to overcome a filibuster by Republicans and two Democrats of the regulatory reform bill.

Afterward, his statement conceded that the changes he is seeking have still not been made to the bill. He “received assurances” from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, that the bill would be altered.

Insurance companies and community banks, Brown said, “would be crippled by the current legislation and in turn would result in job losses.”

So why did Brown buckle, after voting to uphold the filibuster on Wednesday?

For starters, he received 3,000 phone calls to his office over the last week, all of them by supporters of Organizing for America, the apparatus that sprung out of President Obama’s campaign for the White House that is now housed inside the Democratic National Committee.

Brown received around 900 calls on Thursday alone, a DNC source said.

Then there is guilt. Reid all but called Brown out by name on Wednesday when he said that the Senate did not move forward on a procedural vote to end debate and overcome the filibuster because a senator had “broken his word.”

Brown told reporters that he had in fact given Reid his word that he would vote if his concerns were addressed in the bill, but that he voted no on Wednesday because his concerns had not been addressed. Thursday Brown voted yes, though his concerns had still not been addressed.

“We are still working to ensure these commitments are fulfilled prior to a final vote,” Brown said.

The regulatory reform bill appeared headed for final passage late Thursday.

Since joining the Senate in early February, Brown has been one of the few Republican senators willing to side with Democrats on close votes.

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