Former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown (R), who’s currently exploring a run for Senate in New Hampshire, invited President Obama to the state to defend ObamaCare.
“President Obama and Jeanne Shaheen are joined at the hip. If it wasn't for Jeanne Shaheen, Obamacare would not have become the law of the land. He is going to do everything he can to help Jeanne Shaheen in this election, and today I am inviting her to bring him to New Hampshire to defend their healthcare law,” Brown said in the statement.
“Nothing will stop me from continuing to tell the truth about this disastrous health care law and its negative effects on the people of New Hampshire.”
As in most states, Obama is unpopular in New Hampshire, with a recent Suffolk University/Boston Herald poll showing him slightly underwater with 48 percent disapproval; 51 percent disapprove of the job he's doing.
Brown has made ObamaCare a centerpiece of his prospective campaign even before he launched an exploratory committee last week. He’s been touring the state and meeting with local business owners and New Hampshire residents to discuss the negative impacts of the law, which Republicans see as their primary weapon against Shaheen.
That Suffolk University/Boston Herald survey did show that 52 percent of New Hampshire voters believe the healthcare law has been generally bad for the state — but that same poll showed Shaheen leading Brown by 13 points, with 52 percent support.
And the focus on ObamaCare is not entirely without risks for Brown. Democrats are pointing to reports that local Republicans, including a family that hosted a Brown campaign stop and a former state party chairman, have benefitted from the law as evidence that Brown’s attacks on ObamaCare are misguided.
There remains the possibility that the law could become an issue for him in the primary, as well. According to local political reporter James Pindell, he’s been receiving questions about his support for the Massachusetts healthcare law that served as a model for ObamaCare while he was a state senator there.
Conservative Republicans have already criticized him, and he’ll continue to have to explain his support for the Massachusetts law. Brown has argued healthcare reform should be left up to the states as he builds up to an official bid, where he’ll face four other Republicans in the primary.
Still, Brown remains the favorite in the GOP primary, and his likely candidacy has put the state in play for Republicans.