O’Donnell Says She’s Listening to the People, Not the ‘Experts’

By Susan Jones | September 15, 2010 | 9:17 AM EDT

Delaware’s Republican U.S. Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell celebrates her upset over establishment Republican Rep. Mike Castle on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2010, in Dover, Del. (AP Photo/Rob Carr)

(CNSNews.com) – Reports that establishment Republicans will refuse to back conservative newcomer Christine O’Donnell in Delaware may not be true.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) – who backed Republican Rep. Mike Castle in Delaware’s U.S. Senate race – has been quoted as saying he will not back away from supporting O’Donnell’s candidacy. O’Donnell beat Castle, 53-47 percent, in Tuesday’s U.S. Senate primary.

Castle, a two-term governor and nine-term congressman, lost because he supported the Democrats more often than he supported the Republicans, O’Donnell said in an interview with Fox & Friends Wednesday morning.

As for suggestions – from both Republicans and Democrats -- that she can’t win in November, O’Donnell noted that she’s already proved the political experts wrong.

These are the same experts “who said that I had no shot of taking down a 40-year political veteran in this primary. And we did that with just a tenth of what my Republican opponent raised, and we didn’t only win – we won big. So, you know, those folks, maybe they’re making those statements because their pride has just been hurt and their credibility just took a severe shot.”

O’Donnell included former Bush adviser Karl Rove among the experts who have been proved wrong about her.

An aide to Rep. Castle reportedly has issued a statement after Tuesday's primary saying “there’s no chance” that Castle will endorse O’Donnell. “She has Palin,” the aide was quoted as saying. “Why would she need Castle?”

“They’re right,” O’Donnell laughed. Not only does O’Donnell have the support of Palin and Reagan Democrats, “I have the support of the people here in Delaware, and that’s who I’m counting on to win this general election,” she said.

O’Donnell added that if Republicans can put aside their “cannibalism,” she can win the general election. Her opponent is Democrat Chris Coons.

“The people in Delaware, the everyday Americans who are frustrated with politics as usual, who feel isolated by the establishment in both parties here in Delaware, got behind us and put us into a position of strength that then got the national attention,” O’Donnell said on Wednesday morning.

She noted that in Delaware, the winner will be sworn in the day after Election Day, which means that person will serve in the Democrat-dominated lame-duck session of Congress.