October 13th, 2010
08:51 PM ET
10 years ago

Reid, Angle trade barbs as Election Day nears

Las Vegas, Nevada (CNN) - Elusive Republican Senate Candidate Sharron Angle accused Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's campaign of running a "fear and smear" campaign in the face of her surging candidacy, in a rare interview Wednesday.

"The message has certainly changed from hope and change to 'fear and smear'," Angle said.

Angle was speaking to a Mormon business group Wednesday but the campaign had not publicized the engagement. After CNN took up position at the event's entrance, the candidate went in another door. Eventually her staff came outside to grant a short interview.

The Republican candidate for Senate disavowed comments from a pastor at the church she belonged to for a decade, who said he believed Mormonism – Sen. Reid's religion – is a cult. She says she told the luncheon crowd, “that I should not be held responsible for other people's comments, that I do not believe that anybody should be persecuted nor ridiculed for their faith, that we all have a First Amendment right to worship as we please.”

She quoted scripture telling CNN, “First John 5:10 that says anyone who believes in the son of God has his testimony in the heart and I do not judge the testimony of anyone's heart.”

Asked for the source of her belief that two U.S. cities – Dearborn, Michigan and Frankford, Texas– are under Sharia law, the sacred law of Islam, the Republican candidate for Senate told CNN, "All I had was just some articles that I read," adding "I am of course not an expert on what goes in any municipality but certainly I believe in freedom of religion. None should be persecuted for their religion."

Dearborn's mayor called the charge at the time "irresponsible". Angle declined to explain possible remedies she would pursue if there is Sharia law in the U.S.

Her opponent Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, has posted a web ad accusing Angle of being “crazy”. Angle suggested her prodigious fundraising proves voters have rejected that claim.

"I have the largest fundraising numbers in the history of a senate race in the US so I think the people have spoken about the candidacy."

According to her campaign, Angle raised $14.3 million dollars in the third quarter. Her aides say ninety four percent of all contributions were from donors who gave $100 or less and totaling 194,000 individuals.

In a separate interview with CNN, Reid responded. "This election is not going to be decided by how much money someone raises.”

Angle laughed when confronted with Former President Bill Clinton's comments that a vote for her would be "negligent" saying she did not know how to respond in that context, "He has a right to his opinion."

Angle denies changing her position on Social Security and Medicare – she once advocated privatizing both. Angle says of her current views, “I didn’t change my position. What I have had is more information on that position.”

She says she now believes all Americans should be offered the option of choosing privatized accounts. Telling CNN “All I’m saying is that we need to give people the option of a personalized Social Security retirement account that they can have as a benefit and an asset themselves.”

As for the charge of "fear and smear," Reid did not back away from his ads blasting Angle:

"I've been disappointed in this election cycle," Reid said, pointing out the third party ads are having a big impact on the process.

Asked whether he believe she would be dangerous in the U.S. Senate, Reid demurred: "She would certainly be extreme."

“Somebody who has long standing views not for days, weeks, not for months but for years, and she has been very proud of how she has talked about getting rid of the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, privatizing the Veterans Administration,” he told CNN. “Her ideas are extreme, and in my contrast ads I talk about what she has said, these are her words. I haven’t made them up. You hear her saying with her own lips and mouth.”

Filed under: 2010 • Harry Reid • Nevada • Sharron Angle
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Zombie Republican

    I support Republican candidates who want to privatize Social Security, cause Wall Street would never do anything to hurt Americans, never.

    October 13, 2010 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  2. Sgt. Joe

    She is crazy; there's no debating that. She's bragging about how much money "she" has raised? I really doubt she's the one who raised that money. Can you only imagine how much the Repubs want Reid defeated? And with their endless corporate coffers, well, let me just wonder where all that money came from.

    October 13, 2010 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  3. Laurie

    She is an absolute nut It is hard to fathom how she was nominated to be the Republican candidate, but in these post Sarah Palin for VP days, nothing surprises me. Terrible woman, terrible candidate, terrible choice.

    October 13, 2010 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  4. John

    Sharron Angle is UNQUALIFIED to be a U.S.Senate. The lady Idea are so far out there she a nut case.

    October 13, 2010 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  5. John Ellis

    Angel is the crazy aunt who no one talks about, who you feel sorry for. How anyone with any sense of responsibility could vote for her is incredulous. The power of a single senator is immense, as we have seen. It is time for voters to grow up. The Reagan / Bush II / Angel / Paladino / O'Donnell idea of voting out of childish spite is too dangerous, we are still in danger of a depression. You put these anarchists and fascists – and I used the words with care – in and you will guarantee it.

    October 13, 2010 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain

    Look, Lady, every time you open your mouth, you say something nutty ... that is, when you dare to talk at all.

    And even though Harry Reid may not be the most charismatic person, he's a very hard working, dedicated servant of the people of Nevada.

    You, on the other hand, are a train wreck – and someone Nevada, nor the rest of the country needs or wants.

    October 13, 2010 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  7. Roscoe

    If you're voting for Angle, you are what is wrong with our country today.

    October 13, 2010 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  8. Marge

    I tell you those republicans they sure can manufacture can't they. From all the press, those that will print any thing against the republicans that is, Angle is the one running a fear and smear campaign. The more those tea bags speak the more the slime slithers out of their mouths.

    October 13, 2010 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  9. angelosdaughter@att.net

    It would be better if Sharron Angle kept her overactive mouth shut. Everything she says makes her seem stranger and strander. As for the negative campaigning, she should know; her whole campaign has been focused on mudslinging. I have not yet heard anything about her agenda or her record although to judge from a Republican colleague who has come out for Reid, her career in the state legislature has been anything but stellar and she had trouble working coopereratively. Lots of the people who support her are not so much for her as against Reid. They don't realize that if they elect Angle, they are cutting off their noses to spite their faces. Angle is a know-nothing, do-nothing with a big (and extreme) mouth. She will make our state a laughinstock and set womens' rights back a hundred years :she is for denying abortions to the victims of rape and incest; she says to 'take a lemon and make lemonade".. But, Nevadans have a history of blindly voting against their own best interests.

    October 13, 2010 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  10. roro

    The people of Nevada must be just as crazy as she is. Voting for Tinkerbell would be a much better choice.

    October 13, 2010 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  11. Terry

    Sharron Angle is hoping the Mormons can help her out. Can you picture a bunch of Mormons walking the streets of Las Vegas and Reno, asking those smoking, drinking, gambling sinners to support the right wing. Actually, I think the goal of the Mormon Church is to shutdown Las Vegas, or turn it into a prayer and revival retreat destination. Think of the electricity that would be saved. Yup, Vegas is America's Mecca.

    October 13, 2010 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  12. windrider2

    So Sharon thinks that quoting her own words is fear and smear? Does that mean her own words are based in fear and smearing? Does that mean telling the truth is spreading fear and smears? This woman doesn't even comprehend the most basic aspects of the Constitution or she would have never falsely claimed that any city in the US lives under Sharia law, because that would require government to establish a legal system based on a specific religion and that is Unconstitutional. She wants to be a lawmaker but she's utterly clueless as to the most fundamental legal document we have?

    Sadly, we're going to wind up with a bumper crop of ignorant faux constitutional patriots in Congress who are going to create a rat's nest of bad, unconstitutional laws because they're too stupid to know better. And as always, it will be the taxpayers having to ante up to clean up their mess again, just like last time and the time before that. I really think Americans are just too stupid for democracy.

    October 14, 2010 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  13. JJ

    I have to wonder what is it that makes these tea bagging fools think they have a right to refuse interviews so that the people know what kind of people are running for office. Angle deserves everything she gets. If she doesn't like it, then she should quit,

    October 14, 2010 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  14. Just_Me

    God help the state of Nevada and the rest of us if that woman is elected. I'm not a big fan of Harry's, but he has to win re-election. That woman is just completely off her rocker.

    October 14, 2010 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  15. Ken

    How much of that $14.3 million Angle raised has come from Nevada citizens? And how much from out-of-state or from organizations/corporations? I don't know and I'm very curious to find out what the real numbers for her campaign are.

    October 14, 2010 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  16. CRG

    I am not so much concerned with Sharon Angle's reactionary views, but with the number of people in this country who share those views. I am also concerned about a candidate for Congress in Ohio who plays Nazi war games on weekends and the number of people who support and share his views. Even more troubling is the candidate for the Senate from Kentucky who has on several occasions displayed an underlying racist attitude. My father serve in WWII and was twice wounded defending this country. My brothers and I served during Vietnam. These Tea Party candidates are making a mockery of everything we fought for.

    October 14, 2010 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  17. Aaron

    Who is Angle to accuse anyone of running a smear campaign? As far as fundraising showing support for her, it's mainly 2 guys providing the money...the 2 Koch brothers who fund the Tea Party.

    October 14, 2010 01:12 am at 1:12 am |
  18. james Brummel

    Since Angle is known to lie a lot I would seriously investigate what the real numbers are.

    October 14, 2010 01:28 am at 1:28 am |
  19. Mary

    Guess the article she read on Frankford, Texas neglected to mention the fact that it was absorbed by Dallas years ago.

    October 14, 2010 01:33 am at 1:33 am |
  20. Republicans is smart in the head area

    She says she told the luncheon crowd, “that I should not be held responsible for other people's comments, that I do not believe that anybody should be persecuted nor ridiculed for their faith, that we all have a First Amendment right to worship as we please.”

    The she added, Obama is a Muslim who learned at the knee of Jeremiah Wright and that the Mosque at Groud Zero is an outrage and a fictional town in Texas is under Sharia Law.

    “I didn’t change my position. What I have had is more information on that position.” – Classic!

    October 14, 2010 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  21. Randi Lynn

    "According to her campaign, Angle raised $14.3 million dollars in the third quarter. Her aides say ninety four percent of all contributions were from donors who gave $100 or less and totaling 194,000 individuals."
    So this means that up to $1.94 million came from these 194,000 individuals, while the other 6% of her donors donated $12 mil. When they use statistics like these they're trying to confuse people. Obviously she is getting almost all of her cash from a small group of silent donors.

    October 14, 2010 03:04 am at 3:04 am |
  22. Frank

    Angle has now thrown her pastor under the bus to get some votes. Family members are next!

    October 14, 2010 03:08 am at 3:08 am |
  23. Don Wuerl

    YIKES! Who in their right mind would dare state things like privatizing programs like Social Security, Veteran's Administration, ect.? The only person that has done such a thing was Pinochet-didn't our military take him out of power?! That idea is lunacy!!! Let's not forget what this lunatic has requested: 1). Eliminate the US Department of Education, 2.) Eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency, 3.) Stop polluting our water with flouride. I still don't see a reason good enough to use those Second Ammendment remedies if far-right fringe elements don't get their way; it sounds like treason to me! Maybe its just me. What the hell are people smoking in the Nevada dessert?!!! Please have some sense and vote for Senator Ried!

    October 14, 2010 03:32 am at 3:32 am |
  24. Ken in NC

    When asked if he thought Angle would be dangerous in the US Senate, Senator Reid responded, "She would certainly be extreme." I'll take it a step further. That woman would be dangerous in a closet.

    October 14, 2010 04:00 am at 4:00 am |
  25. Vote Democrats or bend over for the Tea Party!

    By far, the most scariest women/person in this whole election is Sharron "Mangle" Angle. Sharron Angle has 14 million this quater that's alot of jucie! She skip meet and greet, no local interview. Every town in NV is against her. Even the business association (casnios, hotels,Republicans) the list go on. Who is giving her this money? Who helping Sharron Angle to buy this election and what will she owe?

    October 14, 2010 04:03 am at 4:03 am |
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