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Scott Brown's office says it regrets 'inadvertent' borrowed text

October 13, 2011|By Kathleen Hennessey
(Harry Hamburg / Associated…)

Republican Sen. Scott Brown's office is blaming a staff error for what appears to be borrowed text on the Massachusetts senator's official website.

A spokesman says inspirational text that once appeared on the website of former North Carolina Sen. Elizabeth Dole landed on Brown's site by accident.

"Sen. Dole's website served as one of the models for Sen. Brown's website when he first took office," said John Donnelly. "During construction of the site, the content on this particular page was inadvertently transferred without being rewritten. It was a staff level oversight which we regret and has been corrected."

The Boston Globe first reported the matter Wednesday night, saying it was brought to its attention by the American Bridge 21st Century, a liberal "super PAC" targeting Republicans candidates.

The group zeroed in on Brown's "student resources" page, which included a "Message from Scott." The message was copied nearly verbatim from a "Message from Elizabeth" once posted on the former senator's page.

"I was raised to believe that there are no limits to individual achievement and no excuse to justify indifference," the site said.  

Brown's office removed the paragraphs after the issue was noted by the paper. It now offers another message to students:

"It has always been my belief that we can be who we want if we work hard enough. I work every day to be the best Senator I can, and to humbly serve you in the United States Senate."

This is the second recent slip-up for Brown, who burst onto the scene when he won the Senate seat held by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy for decades. The moderate is now facing a tough and high-profile battle for reelection against former Harvard professor and consumer watchdog Elizabeth Warren.

Brown, who famously once appeared nude in Cosmopolitan magazine, drew fire last week when he joked that "thank god" Warren never did the same.

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