He will not be a tool of special interests. He will not ride in corporate jet. He will not expand his candidacy to run for president and he will not "appoint judges based on friendship rather than judicial competence."
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Scott Howell on Wednesday made specific pledges to voters, hammered incumbent Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch's stand on several issues and told reporters and campaign supporters gathered at a news conference his "goal is not to 'beat' Orrin Hatch."
"My goal is to let voters of Utah know about my values, my integrity and my commitments to their interests," he said. "You see, 'politics as usual' focuses upon winning. I will focus upon serving and let the voters decide who wins."
With former U.S. Sen. Frank Moss at his side, many of Howell's comments were geared to an election 24 years ago in which Hatch, then a political newcomer, said Moss had been in office too long.
"Today, along with my pledges, I offer you one issue on which Orrin Hatch and I wholeheartedly agree," Howell said. "As Orrin Hatch said 24 years ago, 'What do you call a senator who's been in Washington for 18 years? You call him home.' "
Moss, who will be 89 next week, chuckled at the reference and said he was glad the statements were getting new life. He said he is surprised at Hatch and questioned his "standout as a carryover."
"It really is time for him to retire," Moss said.Comment on this story
Howell, a Utah state senator since 1990 and Senate minority leader since 1992, introduced his wife, his grandmother and other supporters, then downplayed comments from "good-hearted people" who say he cannot beat Hatch.
"They said Utah was too conservative," Howell said. "Let me tell you something: The citizens of Utah are not the kind of conservatives that hide from change. Utahns are the type of people who are choosy about the change they accept."He also chastised Hatch for "sitting on appointments of 24 federal judges."