Sharron Angle struggles on the national stage
How does a political protest movement that encompasses some 30 percent of Americans sit on the national stage? Not always so comfortably, it turns out. U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle of Nevada, a tea party favorite who is running to unseat Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid, has been trying to pull off this awkward balancing act since she won the GOP primary last month. In her latest entry in national political debate, liberal political websites including the Huffington Post have picked up on a radio interview Angle gave last week detailing her opposition to abortion in cases involving incestuous rape. The hypothetical example that KXNT-AM host Alan Stock presented to Angle was a 13-year-old girl impregnated by her father. Angle replied:
"My own personal feelings--and that is always what I express--my personal feeling is that we need to err on the side of life. There is a plan and a purpose and a value to every life no matter what its location, age, gender or disability. ... I think that two wrongs don't make a right. And I have been in the situation of counseling young girls, not 13 but 15, who have had very at-risk, difficult pregnancies. And my counsel was to look for some alternatives, which they did. And they found that they had made what was really a lemon situation into lemonade."Angle's comments reflect an institutional dilemma for candidates like herself and fellow tea party favorite Rand Paul, the Republican nominee in Kentucky's open Senate race. Both candidates are mounting major statewide campaigns in nationalized races without the full benefit of their own national party's support.
After suffering some unwelcome scrutiny for his libertarian critique of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, Paul has tried to reassure GOP establishment figures that he's ready for prime time by edging toward the mainstream.
But Angle has so far tried a different, split-screen approach to her campaign, continuing to pitch campaign appeals to her conservative base while avoiding the national mainstream press. As a result, her campaign has suffered a series of difficulties that may serve as cautionary tales for future tea party candidates. Here's a review:
For the love of all things holy, do not read the comments at the source. I have a sort of morbid fascination with this woman. I saw one of her interviews last week and the woman has no idea what she's talking about. It's rather entertaining to watch.