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Emotional Scott Brown Ad Recalls Abusive Childhood

Emotional Scott Brown Ad Recalls Abusive Childhood

By Scott Conroy - June 18, 2014

As former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown works to introduce himself to New Hampshire's voters in his bid to become the next senator from the Granite State, his campaign is reaching back to a dark period of his life.

In a new bio spot, which will start running on Thursday, Brown's younger sister, LeeAnn Riley, speaks directly to camera and recalls the "physical abuse" that she and her brother suffered at the hands of their stepfathers.

“Scott was there to protect myself and my mom,” Riley says. “Nobody should have to grow up like that, but it made Scott who he is today. He’s determined to do the right thing.”

In his 2011 book, "Against All Odds", Brown chronicled both the sexual abuse that he suffered as a 10-year-old-boy from a camp counselor, as well as the physical abuse he had to contend with at home.

"I do remember getting up in the middle of the night and, you know, having to be the man of the family and come and rescue her and getting knocked around pretty good," he said in an interview with “60 Minutes” that coincided with the book’s release.

The new ad -- which will air on WMUR, WBIN and New Hampshire cable TV -- follows a previous biographical spot, in which Brown sought to highlight his ties to the state that he is running to represent in the Senate.

Brown was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where his sister now lives, but spent most of his youth in Massachusetts.

“When people ask me what kind of man he is, I tell them, ‘He’ll be there for you, like he has been for me,’” Riley says of her brother in the new ad.

Brown is the frontrunner in the three-way Republican primary, which doesn’t take place until September 9 -- leaving less than a two-month general election campaign against incumbent Democrat Jeanne Shaheen, who leads Brown by 6.7 percentage points in the RCP Average.

On Friday, Brown will participate in a candidate forum at the WMUR studio alongside his two GOP opponents: former U.S. Senator Bob Smith and former state senator Jim Rubens. 

Scott Conroy is a national political reporter for RealClearPolitics. He can be reached at sconroy@realclearpolitics.com. Follow him on Twitter @RealClearScott.

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