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Sharron Angle: The $20 billion in BP escrow cash was "slush fund"

Looks like Sharron Angle has now had her ultimate Rand Paul moment: During a radio appearance she labeled the $20 billion BP escrow fund secured by the White House as a "slush fund."

Angle also seemed to agree with a caller who flatly described the fund as extortion, and added: "Government shouldn't be doing that to a private company." For good measure, she said Dems are exploiting the crisis to push energy reform and are following "Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals."

Angle made the claims on the Alan Stock show late yesterday. A caller said that Obama had "basically extorted $20 billion from a private company," and asked Angle what she thought of "the $20 billion slush fund."

"Government shouldn't be doing that to a private company," Angle replied. "And I think you named it clearly: It's a slush fund."

Angle then criticized BP, saying we do need some sort of "management" agency in there to monitor the company, claiming it "cut corners."

But she then said government was in the process of overreaching in its response.

"It's an overreaction by government for not the right reasons," Angle said. "They're actually using this crisis if you will, because they never waste one -- Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals -- they are using this crisis now to get in cap and trade, and every crime and penalty, and slush fund."

Listen to the audio.

This latest from Angle seems to put her in firm agreement with Rand Paul's criticism of Obama for putting the boot on BP's neck, which was national news for days. While Paul took the extra step of labeling Obama's actions "un-American," stoking the media firestorm, Angle's label of the escrow money as a "slush fund" is almost as lurid and overwrought, since such funds imply corruption and are often illegal.

In other Angle-related news, the NRSC has now inserted itself into the Web wars with a new site called The Real Harry Reid.

UPDATE, 12:29 p.m.: I'd originally compared this to Rand Paul, but both Eric Kleefeld and Taegan Goddard note that it's also very comparable to Joe Barton's quotes, which got him in serious trouble with his own party.

UPDATE, 1:38 p.m.: Angle walks it back, saying she shouldn't have used the term "slush fund" and declaring support for the BP escrow fund.

By Greg Sargent  |  July 8, 2010; 10:58 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Climate change , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans  
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Next: Why GOP obstruction helps Republicans, part II


I question whether she even understands what a "slush fund" is.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | July 8, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Question of the day:

How wide does Angle have to open her mouth to fit both feet in?

If Reid loses to her, he doesn't deserve to be in the senate, certainly not in a leadership position.

Nevadans will get what they deserve if they elect Angle to the senate. The problem is they will be inflicting her on the rest of the nation....

Posted by: srw3 | July 8, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 8, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

The Dems need to message this clearly and forcefully: GOP plus corporate profits plus deregulation equals disaster.

I'd also push hard on the fact that she is dangerous precisely because she does not know what she's talking about. Every single thing, gaffes and otherwise, that Greg and others have reported, are right wing cliches. Like Palin, she doesn't do ANY thinking.

Posted by: BGinCHI | July 8, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

The nutbag "Right" Angle is as ugly on the inside as she is on the outside.

Fortunately she lacks the titzenass appeal of a Sarah Palin or even a Michelle Bachmann so she loses the horny male vote.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 8, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse


Attack Iraq for 9/11.

Posted by: Papagnello | July 8, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Any day now she will be telling the unemployed in nevada they are all lazy bums and drug addicts.

Then she will have Sarah Palin come down and call her a momma coyote and Angle will agree until she realizes a coyote is an illegal alien smuggler, then she will take it back say she never used those words, sue Sen Reid for using her words against her, and the TEABAGGERS and Michael Steele will revel in her intelligence

WHat is the GOP doing

Posted by: racerdoc | July 8, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

It's an escrow. Meaning it's simply there to pay claims from, protected from potential bankruptcy or diversion. BP agreed to it after even Republicans called for it (several claimed credit for it even, suggesting that Obama borrowed their idea!), so that the risk of BP running out of money or spending it elsewhere would be reduced. BP isn't complaining about it, and thought it would buy them some good PR, and avoid even more government action. Their shares rose on the news and continue to. There was nothing illegal, improper, socialistic or anything else about it, and in fact it represents prudent governmental action in voluntary cooperation with a private entity at its finest.

She doesn't like government negotiating an escrow with a private company because it's an overreach, but she proposes a governmental management company with authority to take over operations of BP? How in the world can a tea party type propose the most intrusive imaginable government overreach and not even realize what she is saying? what is she smoking?

Posted by: JoeT1 | July 8, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Saul Alinsky's "Rules for Radicals" (it's a book)

Posted by: converse | July 8, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Anger over an escrow account to pay out damages to US citizens directly effected by the BP oil spill is bizarre.

These people would hate kittens if Obama was holding them.

Posted by: trident420 | July 8, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

The ads, they write themselves.

Posted by: CalD | July 8, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

It always cracks me up when conservatives bring up Alinsky.

"Tea Party leader and "the co-founder of Top Conservatives on Twitter" Michael Patrick Leahy has written an entire book based off of Alinsky's "shocking" work, deftly entitled: Rules for Conservative Radicals: Lessons from Saul Alinsky[!] the Tea Party Movement and the Apostle Paul in the Age of Collaborative Technologies. In his book, "Leahy argues that today's conservative radical should follow the tactics of Saul Alinsky, but apply the morals and ethics of Martin Luther King."

And Leahy is not the only conservative poisoned by what right-wing blogger Pamela Geller calls "the mother's milk of the left."

Conservative "hero" and Fox News' favorite investigative journalist James O'Keefe is also a fan. The Los Angeles Times reported that O'Keefe found an "unlikely source of inspiration" in Alinsky and O'Keefe "took to heart" Alinsky's principle to: "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."

Also, on Fox News' Glenn Beck, David Horowitz advocated for conservatives to follow "what Saul Alinsky argues"---i.e., "shout[ing] things whether they are true or not," and "stag[ing] a die-in" -- in order to "catch the other side off-guard" and win the health care debate."

Posted by: lmsinca | July 8, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, she's qualified to be in Congress. The dumbing-down of America continues with the Tea Party. Perhaps she needs to go to LA. and tell the folks down there to "just get on" with their lives. The lives BP brought to a stop.

Posted by: jckdoors | July 8, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

It continues to amaze how someone that is this shallow and ideological can actually generate support and funding for her wing-nut-a-go-go...

WHY is ANYONE taking this woman seriously??

Posted by: rbaldwin2 | July 8, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

All, more grist for the theory that GOP obstruction helps Republicans:

Posted by: Greg Sargent | July 8, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

You remember that lady crying, "We want our country back!"? I've always wondered who she meant by "we." The answer, I think, is becoming clear: the stupid old white people want the country back, just like they had it under Bush. Look at the polling from CA senate:

"Voters who have no more than a high school education back Fiorina 52 percent to 39 percent, while those with a postgraduate degree support Boxer 60 percent to 36 percent.
Voters under age 40 prefer Boxer 52 percent to 33 percent, while voters in all other age brackets lean slightly toward Fiorina.
The poll also found Boxer has sizable leads over Fiorina with Hispanic, Asian and black voters."

Who should be in control of the country: uneducated racist ignoramuses or normal people? That's the choice. We've gone from attacking "elites" to celebrating stupidity.

Posted by: wbgonne | July 8, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Greg thinks he's got another big scoop. Too bad for him the BP slush fund is news from like two weeks ago and many people called it such then.

Posted by: Truthteller12 | July 8, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse


First, the Wall Street Reform was "killing an ant with a nuclear weapon"

Now "It's an overreaction by government for not the right reasons,"

All I can say is for these sheltered elites to come out in the real world and smell the air others breathe!

Posted by: kishorgala | July 8, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Note to Tea Partiers:

If you really are innocently participating in what you think is a movement you can support, you need to pay close attention to your leaders and their true positions, which expose themselves on rare occasions of candor.

Dismantling government is not about your freedom. It's about the freedom of BP to force taxpayers to pick up the tab in order to protect their shreholders. It's about the freedom of BP to avoid any regulations that might have averted this disaster.

And, if you've been watching, it's about the freedom of banks to gamble with your tax dollars. And the freedom of pharmaceutical companies to charge you multiple times as much as they charge Canadians for the same drug.

It's about free trade as long as it means exporting jobs and importing low-wage goods, anything that will drive down wages and benefits for the middle class, but it is not about free trade when it comes to reimporting those pharmaceuticals from Canada.

Tea Partiers, your motives are well placed. But your politicians are lying to you. Don't believe them.

They don't give a rat's about you or your family or the American Dream, save for their well-off benefactors like Dick Armey and the people funding FreedomWorks. And every once in a while, they let it slip.

She'll be back-pedaling on this like the trade-a-chicken-for-a-spleen lady.

Posted by: trippin | July 8, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

"what is she smoking?"

I don't know, but I still want a Z no questions asked.....

Posted by: steve-2304 | July 8, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Ah yes, who doesn't love to hear the ball sack in mouthers talk?

Posted by: larsonlk | July 8, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

So what does Angle believe her role would be if elected? Will she be working for the people, or for corporations?

Posted by: pathfinder12 | July 8, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

oh my god could this woman be any more hilariously stupid?

Posted by: SDJeff | July 8, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: LoveWaPo | July 8, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Big deal. If this was something that Bush did while in office, the Left would be hopping mad and claiming the same thing. It does have the appearance of a shakedown, though.

However, the potential for fraudulent claims against this fund exists and you can be sure that every crook in Louisiana is trying to get some of it. If history is anything to go by, this will happen and a nice chunk of these funds will end up in politicians' pockets.

Posted by: flatlander1992 | July 8, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

I'm amazed at the emotional, vindictive tone of the very large majority of these comments. The name-calling shows not only a lack of class, but a lack of intellectual capacity to rationally debate critic issues in our society. I thought the comment by flatlander1992 was most likely what Sharon Angle meant by a "slush fund". It seems to me that most of you who commented were using "personal attacks" to discredit Ms. Angle's viewpoints. That approach merely discredits you, and adds nothing of value to the debate.

Posted by: SFauthor | July 10, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

How naive she can be. Does she work for BP or their affiliates by any chance. What was all that tax payers money to "help" the banks, could we call that a "slush fund". I feel that the BP 20 billion escrow fund was a smart move. Would you rather see them go use bankruptcy as a ploy to wiggle out of paying the small guy who have lost their jobs and livelihood, then open up under another name with the load of money they have. The Goldman Sachs upper cut we could call it in business terminology.

Posted by: onexstwo | July 10, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

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