Angle Holds Hour Long Press Conference in Reno
By Elizabeth Crum / Nevada News Bureau
Nearly 600 days before the general election and wearing a bright purple suit while proving she is no shrinking violet, Sharron Angle today cheerfully fielded tough questions from nine journalists for nearly an hour.
The sole (so far) candidate for Nevada’s second congressional district held the first press conference of her campaign in a small conference room at the Best Western hotel across from the Reno, NV airport.
During the press conference, each time she was asked whether she really believes she can win the CD-2 primary race and then win a general election after being so badly damaged in last year’s electoral loss, Angle referred to a large sign reading “19,677″ and which represents her margin over Reid in CD-2 last year:
Angle said she believes that large margin means she has strong enough support in the district to win both the primary and general election. Recounting her history as a politician, she also pointed out, “I have won ten elections. I have lost four.”
In defense of her loss to Reid, which came up numerous times in a variety of ways, Angle pointed out that only one Senate Majority Leader has ever been defeated once entrenched.
Some Republican leaders are not thrilled with Angle’s decision to run, fearing she may win the primary but lose in the general election, effectively handing a congressional seat to the Democrats.
Angle dismissed those concerns, saying it was her “right” to run and adding, “I can win.” She insisted she is well-liked in the district, saying her supporters may not agree with her on every issue but they “know how I will vote” and “can sleep at night knowing I won’t change” position on issues.
When asked what mistakes, if any, she thinks she made in her U.S. Senate campaign and whether that will change her approach this time around, Angle answered, “We have some regrets, but too few to mention.”
Angle added that the initial days of last year’s campaign were “like drinking water from a fire house” and went on to talk about how the Harry Reid campaign engaged in “character assassination.” Later in the press conference, she said she needed “a commercial up the day after the primary.”
When asked about her position on Social Security, Angle resurrected a phrase from her sole debate with Reid and said Congress needs to “man up” and stop using the “trust fund” as their “personal piggy bank.”
Questions about the tea party effect and whether it may help her again were met with measured comments about how such labels can be misleading or “box people in.” Angle said she is appealing to voters to whom “constitutional issues” are important, whether they are members of the “tea party” or not.
As the press conference wrapped up, Angle named upcoming events on her calendar and said her new book, an autobiography that will share personal, formative things, will be out on April. The book is entitled “Right Angle” and will be self-published under Author House.
Angle stayed after the press conference to shake hands and answer individual questions, also introducing her press secretary, Will Rasavage, who she said journalists should “feel free” to contact for “exclusive” time with her.
As Angle gears up to hire her campaign team – she said she is conducting interviews now – some Republican leaders are pressing Republican Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki to run, while also asking state party chair Mark Amodei to consider not running in order to avoid a scenario that might pull votes from Krolicki and hand Angle the primary win.
Also considering a run are state Sen. Greg Brower and Kirk Lippold, former U.S.S. Cole commander.