Las Vegas Sun

May 3, 2015

Currently: 69° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

The Senate race:

Media deems Senate debate disappointing draw

Reid Angle Debate - Oct. 14 2010

Sharron Angle and Sen. Harry Reid exchange pleasantries after their debate, moderated by Mitch Fox, center, on Thursday at the Vegas PBS studios. Launch slideshow »

Las Vegas pundits raced to declare Sharron Angle the victor after Thursday night’s first and only face-off between the Republican grandmother from Reno and Harry Reid, the U.S. Senate’s top Democrat.

But beyond the Silver State, most major news outlets cast the debate as a disappointing draw. Save for the birth of what may become the Tea Party’s 2010 midterm mantra, “Man up!”, (counting the seconds until somebody comes up with an auto-tuned YouTube remix) there were few surprises, game changers or memorable moments, the national media complained.

Midterm elections writ large can be a referendum on national politics, but rarely does one race capture so much national attention.

Perhaps that’s why so many national media outlets were disappointed the debate fell short of truly dastardly displays — Reid and Angle have been whetting our appetite for wonky attacks with the way they’ve been trading barbs in TV ads.

But this is Nevada we’re talking about — not the WWE. (Tune into Connecticut for that.)

And although the gaffe-prone grandparents have promised many things, Harry and Sharron never pledged to be prime-time.


The New York Times steered clear of casting judgment, highlighting “a vivid contrast of philosophy” on display at the debate.

The Washington Post may have put it most succinctly with this article title: “In Reid vs. Angle debate, neither side wins.”

Letting the Post elaborate:

“Neither rose above in Nevada Senate debate, but Reid left door open for Angle.”

“Angle is the aggressor … tough and salty … Reid is an erratic public speaker … but he committed none of the verbal gaffes that have become his hallmark over the years.”

“ … neither Reid nor Angle shone in their one-and-only debate of the race.” (The Fix blog)

USA Today bucked the trend, calling the matchup “a sizzling debate.”

“ … neither seemed entirely at ease. But Angle, a neophyte in such a high-profile political contest, never lost her smile and aimed a series of zingers at Reid.”


Fox News gave a slight edge to Angle.

“ … she didn’t come off crazy, and arguably won.”

CNN called an even score.

“Both sides landed some punches, but there didn’t seem to be a knockout in the high-stakes debate Thursday night …”


Politico said “ … while neither gaffe-prone candidate committed a major error, both struggled … the much-anticipated showdown here had more flubs than fireworks.”

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 10 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. @Future...
    "What Reid could not proof (sic) was that Angle was extreme and crazy"...

    Already a widely accepted fact by anyone paying attention, excepting those Tea-Potter's that are blinded by their own idiotology.

    Maybe, for fun, after work today, I'll make you a list of Angle's Greatest Hits... her "All-Time Greatest Gaffes; The "Neo-Nut Notions of Nevada's Nattering Naybob of Negativity", or somesuch...

  2. Angle's performance was very good and we learned she isn't the extremist danger Reid said she is. We also learned that Angle is more intelligent than Reid because she knows what a "YES-OR-NO" answer means while Reid does not. Furthermore, Angle had some good, concrete ideas to turn this Obama/Reid/Pelosi disaster around while all Reid could talk about was where he has spent all our money and how he intends to spend much more. Finally, Angle correctly pointed out that a Senator's duty is not to create jobs, but rather to create a favorable environment in the private sector where job-creating businesses can flourish. To some of us, it appeared Angle "won" easily. She has my vote.

  3. To tell the truth, I don't care what the media sources in the above article think.

    The way I look at it... They are not from here. They won't vote on this election. They can say what they want, but most voters will reject their learned (and sometimes stupid narrow minded) view.

    WE decide who gets back in office to elect us. Not THEM. WE decide mostly based upon who is best qualified to represent us in Washington DC. And WE decide also based upon local issues.

    To prove my point, none of these national media pundits mentioned anything about a very, very big issue that will decide this race: Yucca Mountain Project (YMP). One person is from southern Nevada and wants to continue stopping it, fully realizing it is a totally bad idea, not only now but for future generations of Nevadans. The other one, who is from northern Nevada, wants it to happen so she can rake in money off of getting it to happen.

    THIS is an issue that clearly decides this race for me. And it should for other people too.

    I don't give a crap what the media says (sorry, Las Vegas Sun, but work with me), I am my own boss. And I do what I think is best as a citizen of the Sovereign State of Nevada.

    My vote goes for Senator Reid. Because he is a proven leader.

    No amount of money by Karl Rove, rich ultra conservative billionaires, the Koch Brothers, and foreign corporations can decide what will happen. WE decide. People got to understand that the rich and the corporations love to hold onto politics they want, in order to make more money. But what drives them absolutely bonkers nuts is...they can't control my vote. I say throw that money left and right. It's a waste. I can't be bought. No way am I voting for something that will hurt my livelihood and turn southern Nevada into a wasteland at the slightest incident and/or mistake in handling of nuclear waste.

    Blow that money, Karl Rove. We'll take it here in Nevada. But you AIN'T effecting the outcome of this race.

  4. According to many pundits I have read and heard, just becasue O'Donnell and Angle didn't come off as bat Sh** crazy, they did okay and maybe even Sharron won her debate? Have we really set the bar that low in American politics these days? Angle gave a convoluted answer on health insurance, babbling about Americanism and free markets that still makes no sense in the retelling. And this from USA Today:
    " But Angle, a neophyte in such a high-profile political contest, never lost her smile and aimed a series of zingers at Reid."
    Well, USA Today, Sharron NEVER does lose that creepy smile even when saying the most radical, crazy things. Telling your male opponent to "man up" is not a zinger, it is aping the Witch of Delaware who told Mike Castle to "man up." Must be a GOP or Palin talking point that female Republican candidates must do. Can you imagine the outrage if Harry told Sharron to soften up and act like a woman?

  5. The real reason this debate was poor is due to POOR moderatoration.
    1 minute responses are only good for soundbites. In addition the moderator should not permit either candidate to shoot ou sexual innuendos like man up into a debate.
    The debates by tea party women candidates all used this Tactic which should not be permitted
    Questionss and answers have to be solely confined to the topic

  6. Let's keep our eye on the ball. Since winning the Republican nomination, Angle has pretended to moderate her way-out-there agenda: eliminating Social Security; using Yucca for the country's nuclear waste; letting insurance companies off the hook when it comes to responsibility for paying claims.

    It's only because the media are tiptoeing around the elephant in the living room that America is declining. "Smaller government" and "less regulation" are code words for letting profit-driven corporations exploit the American people. ONE FUNCTION OF GOVERNMENT IS TO LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD BETWEEN THE RICH/POWERFUL AND THE REST OF US. Of course the energy, financial, and insurance industries are contributing heavily to get Republicans back in power. Guess why?

  7. Senator Reid stayed calm despite Angle's smug, self-satisfied, dishonest attacks on him. It's too bad that the American people want entertainment, not substance. Reid offered plenty of substance, while Angle tried to provide the entertainment because she has no substance.

  8. What Great Grandfather Harry Reid needs to concede is that his political war is lost.

  9. Regarding the aforementioned narrow minded comments by aBadReid....

    That is the same exact comment he made to a recent Las Vegas Sun article....

    And if you were to look, you will see I addressed and refuted every one of those claims. The fecal matter blathered by aBadReid was so much that I had to make two separate comments to show point by point what crap it is.

    Whoever aBadReid is, they are only concerned with throwing propaganda out there left and right. And it's the SAME post. Can't even come up with something new.

    When you are a right wingnut trying to influence the vote, I guess it pays to be lazy. Just copy and throw it, fling it, keep throwing it, underhand, overhand, hard, fast, loose, hope it sticks to the wall.

    Ain't gonna work, aBadReid. Really transparent.

  10. I'm with smartone618. I read RevPettibone's comment two times. I even looked at it sideways. Still can't make heads or tails of it.

    I think he's for Senator Reid. Not sure.