Massachusetts Senate Candidate Attorney General Martha Coakley is looking to continue the legacy of the late Senator Edward Kennedy on issues that are of concern to American Jewish voters. In particular, Coakley has pledged to continue Kennedy’s fight for health care reform and has vowed to be the 60th senator to vote for the current senate health care reform bill. Kennedy’s surviving relatives, including his widow, Vicki Kennedy, endorsed Coakley stating:
My husband fought for health care reform for more than 40 years. He called it the cause of his life. He believed that health care for all our citizens was a fundamental right and not a privilege. Martha Coakley shares those beliefs and she’ll go to Washington to fight for us.
Coakley’s opponent, State Senator Scott Brown (R-MA), is opposed to the current health care proposals and has pledged that he will “stop the bill and bring it back to the drawing board.” As a Senator he will employ the same stall tactics advocated by Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele to kill health care reform. Brown’s pledged vote would be a total slap in the face to Kennedy’s memory and everything that he worked for throughout his career.
Additionally, Brown is supported by the Tea Party movement, which contains some activists who have used Holocaust rhetoric and anti-Semitic epithets to try and scare Americans into fearing President Barack Obama’s health care reforms. It seems that Brown is trying to downplay his support from the Tea Party movement despite photographic evidence and busloads of activists converging on Massachusetts. How ironic it would be for the Democrats to lose Kennedy’s seat to a Tea Party-courting, Fox News-supported candidate who vows to dismantle Kennedy’s life’s work.