Bennett talks about defeat, defends record

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Sen. Bob Bennett believes delegates to Utah's Republican convention last week did not reflect party voters at large.

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"I'm persuaded that if I had survived the convention, I would be staying in the Senate for another six years," Bennett said Friday, as he sat down for an extended interview for KSL's Sunday Edition.

The senator said he is still holding open the possibility of running as a write-in.

"I'm getting an awful lot of pressure -- very friendly pressure to be sure -- from a lot of Utahns who say they are outraged at what happened. One fellow called me today and said, ‘I'm going to write you in whether you want me to or not,'" Bennett said.

Bennett believes his vote for TARP cost him dearly with convention Tea Party supporters. TARP, the Troubled Asset Relief Program, was engineered by the Bush administration and pumped billions of dollars into the nation's financial system to prevent its collapse.

"It hurt me, there's no question," Bennett said. "But looking back on it, I think it was the right vote, and I would do it again even if I knew it would end my career."

You can see the full interview with Sen.Bennett on Sunday Edition, Sunday morning at 9:00 on KSL Channel 5.


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