Former Hewlitt-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina (R) on Monday said that she is the best candidate to defeat Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) because she is a woman.

Asked why she is a better candidate than her Republican primary opponent Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R-Calif.), Fiorina said that a woman stands a better chance of defeating Boxer.


"With all due respect and deep affection for white men, I am married to one," Fiorina said at a breakfast at Americans for Tax Reform. "But [Barbara Boxer] knows how to beat them in California, she has done it over and over and over again."

Of DeVore, the former economic adviser to Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) presidential campaign said "he's the opponent Barbara Boxer hopes she faces."

Fiorina also said she has a better chance of defeating Boxer (D-Calif.) in next year's general election because she is not a "career politician." 

Asked if she would support President Barack Obama's judicial nominees as a senator and if she would have voted for now-Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Fiorina said she was not very familiar with her record because she was being for breast cancer, but added that she would have supported her nomination.

"Honestly I did not study in great detail Sotomayor's record because I was battling breast cancer at the time," she said. "But based upon what I know, I think my conclusion is I would have voted for her. She seemed qualified from everything I could read. As I said, I think elections have consequences. That's why elections matter."

A majority of Republican senators opposed Sotomayor's confirmation in August, saying her views were outside the mainstream and that she may legislate from the bench. A group of nine GOP senatots voted for her: George Voinovich (Ohio), Susan Collins (Maine), Olympia Snowe (Maine), Judd Gregg (N.H.), Richard Lugar (Ind.), Kit Bond (Mo.), then-Sen. Mel Martinez (Fla.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.) and Lamar Alexander (Tenn.)

But throughout her speech, Fiorina stressed that she was just as conservative as her primary opponent DeVore, who is seeking to outflank her on the right. She said she opposed abortion rights and harped on her anti-tax and spending views.

"I am pro-life, I believe that life begins at conception, thatis not a change despite what Chuck DeVore has led you to believe," she said. "I do not believe I differ from Chuck DeVore either fiscally or socially."

Asked whether former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) would jump into the race, she said that would be up to her, but added, "I share Sarah Palin's values." 

DeVore responded to Fiorina's salvo on Twitter saying, "Fiorina at Mon. presser: "white guy" DeVore can't beat Boxer. I thought we moved beyond the politics of gender when Obama beat Clinton." 

This story was updated at 11:00 a.m.