Pick-up driver Mr Brown goes to Washington to sort out America

SENATOR-ELECT Scott Brown went to Washington yesterday and declared that America needed help solving its problems because "we've sort of lost our way".

Still basking in the glow of his victory over a Democrat in liberal Massachusetts, Mr Brown said: "I plan to look at every bill and make a rational decision."

The pick-up truck-driving candidate called Washington "the best place in the world when it comes to solving problems", if the system is working properly.

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He visited Senator John McCain and also planned to see Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, as well as Massachusetts Democrat senators John Kerry and Paul Kirk. He will replace Mr Kirk, who was filling the seat left vacant by the death of Ted Kennedy, who held it for 47 years.

Asked what he hoped to accomplish, Mr Brown replied: "I'm certainly not in favour of higher taxes and cutting Medicare half a trillion." Medicare is the government-run healthcare plan for the elderly.