Nevada Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle's understanding of the political press appears to have even conservative outlets scratching their heads.
The Tea Party favorite made another peculiar remark during an interview with Fox News on Monday evening, explaining that she wanted "to have the press be our friend," and "ask the questions we want to answer so that they report the news the way we want it to be reported."
This may seem like a candid admission from a candidate who has experienced a rocky roll-out since winning the Republican nomination. But it has left traditionally sympathetic media figures perplexed if not uncomfortable.
Fox News's Carl Cameron told Angle that she sounded "naïve" before resorting to somewhat nervous laughter. The National Review ran the exchange under the title "Did She Just Say That Out Loud?"
The comments come after a variety of other bizarre statements and actions from Angle with respect to the media. The Nevada Republican abruptly bolted a press conference that she had set up in-state once it came time for the question and answer session, forcing reporters to chase her through a parking lot. Even before that she told the Christian Broadcasting Network's David Brody that she was avoiding mainstream outlets because "there's no earning for me there."
"In that audience, will they let me say I need $25 dollars from a million people go to Sharron Angle.com send money? Will they let me say that?" she said, when explaining how she chooses to grant interviews. "Will I get a bump on my website and you can watch whenever I go onto a show like that we get an immediate bump. You can see the little spinners. People say 'Oh, I heard that. I am going and I'm going to help Sharron out' because they realize this is a national effort and that I need people from all around the nation. They may not be able to vote for me, but they can certainly help."
To be sure, Angle is far from the first candidate to cater her media appearance to audience that she thinks will get her the most political advantage. But being so frank in explaining why she does the interviews she does carries a risk; mainly, it compels reporters like Cameron, and outlets like the National Review to feel defensive about the coverage they're giving her. No reporter wants to have the perception that they are being used by a political candidate. And with Angle essentially admitting that's she's only interested in beneficial coverage, it won't be terribly surprising to see even conservative-leaning reporters start grilling her with tougher questions to prove their bona fides.
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