Shaheen, at event for military veterans, calls again on Brown to limit outside spending
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen claps after a speaker during the luncheon at UNH Law in Concord with former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen for the announcement of a fellowship program for veterans on Wednesday, March 19, 2014.
(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen speaks during a luncheon at UNH Law in Concord with former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen for the announcement of a fellowship program for veterans Wednesday, March 19, 2014.
(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen has an image to distribute this week among New Hampshire voters: Scott Brown, friend of Wall Street, ally of the oil and gas industry, willing recipient of outside campaign spending.
For the second-straight day, Shaheen sharply criticized the Republican and former Massachusetts U.S. senator for refusing to sign an agreement that would limit ads paid for by special interest groups, a pact similar to one he signed in an ultimately unsuccessful 2012 re-election bid.
Speaking yesterday after an appearance at the University of New Hampshire School of Law in Concord, Shaheen said the People’s Pledge – in which candidates who benefit from the ads contribute half their cost to a charity of the opponent’s choosing – would help keep the race about issues most relevant to the state’s voters.
“I think what we saw in (the Massachusetts) race was that pledge really did work to limit outside money,” Shaheen said. “It really did work to limit negative advertising. It really did work to hold candidates accountable for what they had to say and for the attacks they made.”
“I would hope Scott Brown would feel the same way about the voters of New Hampshire that he did about the voters of Massachusetts,” she said.
The remarks came less than a week after Brown announced he was forming an exploratory committee for a U.S. Senate run in New Hampshire. Shaheen, a Democrat and former New Hampshire governor, has held the seat since 2009.
Her appearance was for the new Robert J. Dole fellowship program, which will help military veterans attend the law school in exchange for a three-year commitment to providing legal assistance to fellow veterans. The program, a collaboration between the former Kansas senator and the Warren B. Rudman Center for Justice, Leadership and Public Policy, aims to raise a $2 million endowment.
Shaheen praised the initiative and said its impact would be widespread.
“This program will really make a meaningful difference in not only the lives of the veterans returning home who receive this fellowship, but also so many other veterans who are going to benefit from the work of the veterans who get the scholarship,” she said.
The event included a keynote by Adm. Mike Mullen, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Mullen, who retired in 2011, said returning veterans often face daunting legal hurdles, such as benefit claims, and that the issue “gets a little bit lost” in the public.
“So this initiative will pay off, I think, in ways that are hard to understand,” he said.
Mullen said helping veterans transition back to civilian life is a critical endeavor, as many are returning home without adequate assistance to find employment and other services.
“They’re coming home at about a thousand a day, and we’re hiring about a hundred a day,” he said.
(Jeremy Blackman can be reached at 369-3319, firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JBlackmanCM.)