Sharron Angle, the GOP nominee
challenging Nevada Senator Harry Reid, is taking a new tack in
discussing social issues: she's ignoring them.
Angle's stumbling over social issues,
including gay rights, appears to be coming to a close.
The 61-year-old Southern Baptist
recently made headlines when The Associated Press published a
four-page questionnaire filled out by Angle for the Washington-based
group Government is not God, which has endorsed Angle's candidacy.
Among her positions, Angle opposes
protections based on sexual orientation and gay adoption. She also
believes clergy should be allowed to campaign from the pulpit on
behalf of political candidates, which is currently banned by the
In a section titled politics,
she says she would refuse PAC money from those who are fundamentally
opposed to her views on social issues.
“In reference to question 35A, Intel
Corporation supports 'equal rights for gays' and offers benefits to
'partners' of homosexual employees. Would you refuse funds from this
“Yes,” Angle checked.
The sixty-one-year-old former Nevada
assemblywoman boasts about her support for the state's ban on gay
marriage at her campaign website.
Yet at a business networking breakfast
on Tuesday, she steered clear of these issues.
When asked by a man, “What about
those of us that are disenfranchised from Social Security because we
are gay or lesbian and consequently are not allowed to marry, not
allowed spousal benefits?” Angle elegantly shifted the conversation
from gay marriage to citizen empowerment.
She told the man that he had just
touched on what's wrong with Social Security: “It doesn't belong to
“If you had a personalized retirement
plan, you would be allowed to invest that 15 percent over the years,
and that would then be yours to pass down as an inheritance,” she
“Pivoting off the gay marriage
question to Social Security, that's a textbook example of answering
the question you want to answer instead of the one you're asked,”
University of Nevada at Reno political science professor Eric Herzik
told AOL News.
Senator Reid is facing a difficult
re-election campaign that promises to test his lukewarm support for
gay rights. Forty-eight percent of the state's voters have a “very
unfavorable” view of Reid and sixty-two percent describe him as a
liberal, according to the latest Rasmussen poll.
Gay rights groups, on the other hand,
continue to press the Senate majority leader on difficult issues,
including whether he'll help a
federal gay workplace protections bill (ENDA) reach the Senate floor
and the timing of a vote on repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,”
the 1993 law that bans openly gay troops.
Reid has promised the Senate will vote
on repeal of the gay ban in September, before the midterm elections.