by Quin Hillyer

When people first watch and listen to presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, they sense that she is both tough and seemingly fearless, and they like it. And they sense that she is not one of these typical politicians relying on handlers to tell her what to say and to protect her from herself. On the latter point, journalists who have spent lifetimes in the business are thoroughly accustomed to the habit of the pre-interview interview: The staff, the handlers, want to know in advance what the topics will be, what to “prepare” for, what to program their candidate to say.

Not Fiorina. Given several chances in advance to touch at least on the broad outlines of my scheduled phone interview with her, her aides seemed bemused. She’ll handle anything you can throw at her, they said, in so many words. We don’t need to worry about her.

It was, is, refreshing.
So, I jumped right in. What follows is an almost complete transcript of the interview….

 

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