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'Occupy' movement becomes Mass. Senate race fodder

The Occupy Wall Street movement has become the latest issue in the high-profile Massachusetts Senate race.

Republicans are criticizing Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren for taking a measure of credit for the protest movement.

“I created much of the intellectual foundation for what they do,” she said in an interview with The Daily Beast. “I support what they do.”

The National Republican Senatorial Committee’s spokesman Brian Walsh blasted Warren in a statement.

“Warren’s decision to not only embrace, but take credit for this movement is notable considering the Boston Police Department was recently forced to arrest at least 141 of her Occupy acolytes in Boston the other day after they threatened to tie up traffic downtown and refused to abide by their protest permit limits,” Walsh said.

Democrats countered by highlighting the amount of support Sen. Brown has received from Wall Street donors.

“It’s no wonder that Forbes called Scott Brown one of Wall Street’s favorite senators and it’s no surprise Brown’s cronies are attacking any candidate who wants to fight for the middle class,” Matt Canter, communications director for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said in an email to First Read. "Scott Brown has a long record of shaking Wall Street down for campaign contributions after doing their bidding in Washington. For instance, at the same time Brown was working to water down the Wall Street reform bill he was shaking down the financial industry and their lobbyists for campaign cash. In fact, Brown has collected more money from Wall Street than just about any other member of Congress outside of New York.”

Recent polls show public support of the movement. In the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll earlier this month, 37% said they supported the protests, 18% said they did not. In the latest Time magazine poll released on October 13th, 54 percent of those polled view the protests favorably. But an AP-GFK poll found 37% say they are supporters, and 56% say they are not.

Warren is the favorite in the Democratic primary, hoping to face off against incumbent Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown (R), who won seat formerly held by the late Sen. Ted Kennedy (D).