Senate Candidate Marisa DeFranco

By Jordan Weinstein

April 18, 2012

BOSTON — In all the Elizabeth Warren/Scott Brown volleying, sometimes we lose sight of the fact that the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate is not yet set. Immigration lawyer Marisa DeFranco talked to WGBH News about jobs, taxes and the status of her campaign.

On being considered the underdog
I'd actually be happy if [the media] were reporting me as the underdog. But the problem is that they've mostly failed to mention my name or contact me! … It is so early still in this race. I mean everybody wants everything yesterday and I don't understand the desire to sort of close down the democratic, small-D democratic process where you actually vet the candidates and let the voters decide. And the media's not doing that because by completely failing to mention that there is another Democratic candidate in the race they foreclose the possibility of people learning about my candidacy.
On fundraising
[As a lowball estimate] all told I believe we've raised $40,000. The only thing is that we've been consistent every quarter. … My challenge as somebody who's a real person, who lives and works in Massachusetts but who doesn't have fame nationwide or that access to money, was to make sure that my campaign was founded in message. And quite frankly you can have all the money in the world but if you don't have a message and a plan to tell the people how you're going to fix these problem then it doesn't mean anything in my opinion. And I mean that specifically because neither Scott nor Elizabeth has a jobs plan as far as I can see.
On her jobs plan
I believe in investing federal money into putting Americans back to work. $100 billion over two years would create 2 million green jobs. It's a start to get us back into a thriving economy.
On the Buffett Rule
I support a progressive tax system where everybody pays their fair share across the board. The other thing, though, and this is going to be somewhat strange to hear from a Democrat, but I do think — the tax burden is carried by about 50 percent of the population and the other half doesn't pay anything … I do think even if it's $5, even if it's $10, I think everybody should be, as Americans, part of the system. Everybody should feel vested in the system. So I think it's important for everybody to pay taxes so we're all, as Americans, contributing to the system.
On the war in Afghanistan
We need to be out of there. I mean, my preference would be by the end of the year. I know that logistically, though, it could take until the end of 2013 [to do it] as quickly as possible and as safely as possible. But I think that by the end of 2013, that should be a hard deadline.

> > WATCH: Marisa DeFranco on Greater Boston (January 2012)


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