The Armed Services and Homeland Security posts will put him in position to lobby for federal defense contracts for Massachusetts and New England – a task that was perfected by the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy, who funneled billions of defense dollars to the Bay State. Although Brown is a freshman in the minority party, the region's defense industry has a powerful Washington lobby and strong allies on both sides of the aisle. Homeland Security includes oversight of the Coast Guard.
The full Senate must ratify Brown’s assignments, which were announced this afternoon. The appointments were made by Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.
“As a 30-year member of the National Guard, I am honored to have received these appointments,” Brown said in a press release. “We are currently involved in two wars, and these committees are critical in keeping our country safe, as well as protecting the men and women who defend us.”
Massachusetts High Technology President Christopher R. Anderson released a statement this afternoon lauding the assignments:
"The CEO members of the Mass. High Tech Council and the Defense Technology Initiative congratulate Senator Brown on his prestigious committee appointments. This is terrific news for Massachusetts and New England, particularly for our defense technology sector. It also shows the immediate clout Senator Brown wields on Capitol Hill as the result of his game-changing campaign and pledge to address our nation's challenges in a bipartisan manner. We look forward to working with him in building the regional economy and defense sector."