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Angle Compares Herself To Abraham Lincoln, Admits She ‘Softened’ Her Positions After The Primary

By Matt Corley on July 6, 2010 at 1:40 pm

"Angle Compares Herself To Abraham Lincoln, Admits She ‘Softened’ Her Positions After The Primary"

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Nevada Senate GOP Candidate Sharron AngleWhen Tea Party candidate Sharron Angle won the Republican primary in Nevada to challenge Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) in November, her victory was called a “surprise” by the Nevada press. Angle’s primary win was a surprise to her supporters as well, at least according to a radio interview Angle gave to supporter Bill Manders last Friday.

In the interview, Manders said that when interviewed Angle for the first time “in this cycle,” he said he told her, “I don’t possibly think that you’re going to win it.” “you surprised everybody and won this nomination,” said Manders, prompting Angle to compare herself to Abraham Lincoln:

MANDERS: Yes. I do. I said you’ve lost, how are you going to win this? I don’t possibly think that you’re going to win it.

ANGLE: That’s right.

MANDERS: And then you surprised everybody and won this nomination.

ANGLE: That’s right.

MANDERS: This opportunity to run against the beast, Harry Reid.

ANGLE: Well, you know, it’s just like Abraham Lincoln. He lost quite a few. But he won the big one.

MANDERS: Yes he did.

ANGLE: He won the one that mattered for the country. And, really that’s what we’re in now.

Manders then suggested that Angle had “softened” her hard right image since she won the primary. “Well, you know, we’re in a general election,” replied Angle. “I actually softened because I’m being held accountable for every idle word, as you know.” She then apologized for saying that the unemployed are “spoiled.” Listen here:

Though she hasn’t abandoned her radical ideas, it’s true that Angle has sought to “soften” the presentation of her views. During the primary, Angle argued that, “We need to phase Medicare and Social Security out in favor of something privatized.” Now, Angle says it’s “nonsense” that she wants to privatize Social Security, euphemistically saying instead that “going forward we need to personalize that program.” Until last week, the “issues” page on her website said that Social Security needed to be “transitioned out.” Now, her website says, “We must keep the promise of Social Security” and “We should also create personalized accounts for the next generation that cannot be raided.”

Transcript:

MANDERS: But Sharron, you know that I over the years — and we’ve known each other for a long time, you’re one of the first people that I met when I came to town. You know over the years I haven’t softballed you. I’ve asked you a lot of questions that really held your feet to the fire.

ANGLE: The first time, the first time I had an interview with you in this cycle, you said, “come on now, Sharron, we’re just going to be straight. We’re not going to go to that nicey nicey who are you.”

MANDERS: Yeah.

ANGLE: “We’re just going to talk about it and I’m going to say to you, you’re a loser.” Remember that?

MANDERS: Yes. I do. I said you’ve lost, how are you going to win this? I don’t possibly think that you’re going to win it.

ANGLE: That’s right.

MANDERS: And then you surprised everybody and won this nomination.

ANGLE: That’s right.

MANDERS: This opportunity to run against the beast, Harry Reid.

ANGLE: Well, you know, it’s just like Abraham Lincoln. He lost quite a few. But he won the big one.

MANDERS: Yes he did.

ANGLE: He won the one that mattered for the country. And, really that’s what we’re in now.

MANDERS: Do you think you’re too over the top? Do you think that, you know, again, and I’ve told you, no listen, I’ve got to thank you, I’ve been mentioned on, heck, everybody’s show in and around the world apparently. I got an e-mail from a family member of mine. He said, oh man, you were on Rachel Maddow and the Huffington Post mentioned you. I was in the New York Times, and I was in — and I’m going, “what are they talking about?” And it was all because I said that I think you should slide to the middle a little bit. I didn’t say that you needed to change your stance or anything else. And I think those in the know know exactly what I’m saying. You need to soften a little bit your direct approach because you really smack people in the face. I think, listen to me, I know you want to defend that, but I’m just…

ANGLE: Actually, I was just going to tell you that…

MANDERS: I’m telling you, you’ve softened up since I said that.

ANGLE: Well, you know, we’re in a general election.

MANDERS: Yes.

ANGLE: And they’re demanding things, today I actually softened because I’m being held accountable for every idle word, as you know. And I said in an interview, now I have to just preface this, everyone knows I’m not a career politician. Harry Reid’s the career politician.

MANDERS: Right.

ANGLE: He’s been there for 24 years. I don’t use teleprompters, you know, whatever you ask me, whatever the folks on the phone ask me, it’s the first time.

MANDERS: I can attest it’s a straight forward answer.

ANGLE: That’s right, and it’s the first time I ever heard the question. So, when they ask me about unemployment and I said, spoiled citizenry, I want to say I’m really sorry for that remark and I want to say, that I shouldn’t have said it that way. I could have chosen better words.

MANDERS: When we come back though…

ANGLE: But, I want now, since I’ve set that bar, that I’m willing to apologize when I’m wrong, Harry Reid needs to apologize to everyone of our soldiers for saying this war is lost.

MANDERS: It would take, it would take him to the end of time to apologize for the things that he’s apologized for.

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