Brown notes committee preferences, tries to pull staff together

Brown notes committee preferences, tries to pull staff together

Sen.-elect Scott Brown (R-Mass.) wrapped up a visit to Washington on Thursday by naming Armed Services, Homeland Security and Appropriations as the committees on which he’d like to serve.

He also said he is scrambling to make staff decisions.

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“We're in that process right now,” said Brown. “Every waking second is trying to deal with not missing a beat.”

He joined his GOP colleagues at their caucus lunch, and met earlier in the day with Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainGOP senators appalled by 'ridiculous' House infighting MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace, Chris Christie battle over Fox News Trump's attacks on McConnell seen as prelude to 2024 White House bid MORE (R-Ariz.), John KerryJohn KerryClimate policies propel a growing dysfunction of Western democracies Kerry calls out countries that need to 'step up' on climate change Those on the front lines of climate change should be empowered to be central to its solution MORE (D-Mass.) and Paul Kirk (D-Mass.), whose seat he will take.

Brown, who expects to be sworn in next week, said he’s received a warm welcome from senators across the aisle, including Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidBottom line Voters need to feel the benefit, not just hear the message Schumer-McConnell dial down the debt ceiling drama MORE (D-Nev.).

“We had a nice talk, we cracked a few jokes,” Brown said of his chat with Reid.

“The reception I’ve received from the folks on the other side, the Democrats on the other side and the delegation especially has been extremely gratifying,” Brown added. “I really appreciate their efforts to reach out.”

Brown also met with Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellUS could default within weeks absent action on debt limit: analysis The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Congress avoids shutdown Senate dodges initial December crisis with last-minute deal MORE (R-Ky.) before the GOP lunch.

Brown said he was not anticipating any problems with being seated. The process could take up to 15 days from this Tuesday, but Brown indicated he could be seated earlier.

“I think the delegation wants me seated, and when I spoke to Harry Reid, he didn't seem to think there was any issues, and there’s certainly no issues in Massachusetts, so I am anticipating sometime next week."

Reid’s office has said that it will wait for the election results to be certified by Massachusetts before seating Brown. 

Brown said he would be open to working with Democrats on various issues but he panned the pending healthcare reform bill as a bad deal for Massachusetts.

“The bill that was being pushed in Washington was not good for Massachusetts,” he said. “It may have been good for other states but we already had everything and a lot of what was being proposed.”

Brown noted that about 98 percent of people in Massachusetts have health insurance coverage because of reform the state enacted in 2006.

Outside the Capitol's East Steps, Brown was met by a half-dozen supporters near his SUV, one of whom held a sign that read “Thank You Massachusetts, Welcome Sen. Brown.”

He told a small swarm of media that surrounded him that he was returning to Boston for a “family obligation” — a daughter's basketball game at Boston College — and parried a reporter's question about whether he would be a “waking up” for President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaGOP infighting takes stupid to a whole new level Politics must accept the reality of multiracial America and disavow racial backlash To empower parents, reinvent schools MORE.

“I think me being here will hopefully bring a sense of transparency and good government back, and just create debate,” he said. “I think that's what the people really want.”