Democratic Sen. Harry Reid bested Republican upstart Sharron Angle to win the U.S. Senate contest in Nevada, a costly, closely watched brawl that pitted one of President Obama’s top lieutenants against a “tea party” favorite.
Outside groups poured millions of dollars into a race that many political observers saw as a referendum on Obama administration policies, which Reid had guided through the Senate. Angle bashed the policies throughout the campaign as doing little to help bring down Nevada’s stubbornly high unemployment rate.
Reid, 70, the soft-spoken, sometimes-prickly Senate majority leader, suffered from dismal approval ratings and a deep-held resentment of his sway over state affairs.
He drew a feisty, if controversial, challenger in Angle, who nabbed a come-from-behind primary win with the aid of deep-pocketed conservative groups. A former state lawmaker, the petite and affable Angle often responded to tough questioning with little more than a broad smile.
The pair clashed over the role of Washington on almost every issue, with Angle reflecting libertarian-leaning Nevada’s longstanding suspicion of federal power. Reid championed the economic stimulus package and the healthcare law, while Angle took the position of free-market absolutist. She said it was outside the government’s power to create jobs or to impose insurance mandates, though, as a social conservative, she also favored outlawing abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.
(Read More: LA Times)