The ad provoked more rhetoric, most of it aimed at Brown from abortion rights groups weighing in from around the country. Warren has received the backing of several prominent groups that support abortion rights.
Warren supports legalized abortion in most cases, but her campaign spokeswoman, Alethea Harney said Warren would not try to overturn a federal ban on a late-term procedure that opponents call “partial birth abortion.” Harney did not say whether the candidate supported legalizing the procedure. Harney also said Warren supports the state’s parental notification requirement, which can be bypassed with the approval of a judge.
EMILY’S List, a national Democratic campaign group that supports candidates who favor abortion rights, including Warren, called the ad “shockingly dishonest.”
“Scott Brown is straight-up lying to Massachusetts voters with his latest ad,” the group said.
“Brown does not support a woman’s right to choose; his antichoice voting record has earned him the support of an antichoice organization in this very campaign,” said Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List. “And Brown does not support equal pay for women; he actually voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act.”
But the Brown campaign said the senator “has a strong record standing up for the issues important to women.”
“He is prochoice, supports good jobs with equal pay, and is an independent leader focused on turning this economy around for all of us,” said Alleigh Marre, a spokeswoman. “Attempts by professor Warren and her supporters to scare women voters won’t work. She should apologize for her negative campaign.”
Despite his endorsement by the state’s leading antiabortion group, Brown recently called on the Republican Party to remove strict antiabortion language from his platform. Brown was also the first Senate Republican to call on Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin to abandon his campaign after Akin said that “legitimate rape” victims can physiologically prevent pregnancies.
Brown pledged during a press conference last month to “never vote in the Senate to curb women’s reproductive rights.”
But he has taken votes that have upset groups that favor abortion rights. Brown cosponsored the Blunt Amendment, which would allow health plans and employers to refuse to pay for contraception and other medical services if they have a religious or moral objection. He also opposed the Disclose Act, which would require independent political groups to disclose the names of donors who give more than $10,000. Antiabortion groups were strongly opposed to the act because they believed it curbed First Amendment rights.
Brown was on the defensive this week about a third ad, in which he says that President Obama signed into law a bill he filed to prevent members of Congress from using insider information to profit in the stock market. Though Brown filed a bill on the subject and worked on its passage, the version that reached Obama’s desk was introduced by Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, the Connecticut independent.