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Tea Party triumph?

"Tea Party triumph?" Continued...

Issue: "At the wire," Nov. 6, 2010

But the volunteers who support her are moved not just by Reid-loathing but by love for Angle herself. Barbara Dragon, the energetic homeschool mom who organized the precinct walk and an officer with Nevada Homeschool Network, said Angle, a former homeschool mom herself, has championed homeschool rights in a state that has severely restricted them. She shows a picture of Angle at the signing of landmark homeschool legislation and affectionately recalls hearing Angle sing, "To God Be the Glory" a capella. Doreine Musch, a Tea Party attendee, said she supported Angle from the primary and didn't care how the Tea Party Express or outside groups said to vote: "I voted for the person I thought would represent me. . . . I love her." Musch has been involved in campaigns since the Reagan era and this one is different, she said: "I feel more energy."

"You're winning, Joe Six Pack!" Sarah Palin had told the crowd earlier as they waved Sharron Angle signs, but she reminded the crowd they haven't won yet. Still, with polls showing just 1 percent of the electorate undecided, the race Harry Reid wanted may not be the lifeline he thought it would be.

Close in California

By Brittany McComb

Facing an electorate suffering a jobless rate that is third-highest in the nation and a state fiscal crisis needing federal aid to patch a third of its deficit, Sen. Barbara Boxer may need more than a record of total support for abortion and same-sex marriage to win re-election in one of the bluest of the blue states, California.

Is the three-term Democrat from San Francisco too liberal for California? Probably not. But Boxer finds herself in a fight for her political life against a pro-life, anti--gay-marriage Republican who emphasizes free-market economics and her experience as CEO of a tech company that was in the top 10 of the Fortune 500. Carly Fiorina trails Boxer, but Rasmussen Reports rated the contest a toss-up less than two weeks before Election Day. It's not that social issues don't matter. Economic ones seem to matter more.

Boxer has enjoyed two successful re-election campaigns in California and is known for staunch pro-abortion views. Yet, a Field Poll released in late October revealed that although Californians advocate abortion as much as they did in 1973, when the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion in Roe v. Wade, more than half of those expressing support for Fiorina support the current abortion regime. Fiorina has said she opposes Roe.

This Sarah Palin--endorsed social conservative, in her first political race, is proudly pro-life and backs other socially conservative positions generally at odds with voters in California. But California may not be as deep blue as advertised. Field Polls of California voters released in July reveal 49 percent of registered voters approve of Arizona's immigration law, while 45 percent of voters disapprove. On the question of whether to grant same-sex couples marriage rights, when given an option of civil unions, only 44 percent backed same-sex marriage.

Nonetheless, while they are evenly divided on President Barack Obama's handling of the national economy, there's near agreement among California voters that the state's economy isn't doing well. Thus, the clincher in the Boxer-Fiorina race this fall seems to be jobs. Fiorina advocates tax cuts and lighter regulation. Boxer's answer amounts to more of the same government stimulus and targeted tax benefits.

That seemed too little for the liberal San Francisco Chronicle, which refused to endorse either candidate: Boxer, the paper opined, "has failed to distinguish herself during her 18 years in office. There is no reason to believe that another six-year term would bring anything but more of the same uninspired representation."

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