Carly Fiorina

By Kevin Modesti, Staff Writer
Updated: 01/19/2010 08:40:00 PM PST

NORTH HOLLYWOOD – All business in style and substance, U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina came to the San Fernando Valley on Tuesday and said cuts in taxes and regulations can “restore California to the land of opportunity within the land of opportunity.”

Fiorina, one of three prominent Republicans vying to challenge Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer, pitched herself to a luncheon audience of 100 members of the Valley Industry and Commerce Association as a self-made star of the business world who wants to bring her experience to Washington.

“I think too many politicians either never knew what the real world is like or have forgotten what the real world is like,” said Fiorina, the former chairwoman and CEO of Hewlett-Packard. “I think we need a little more practical problem-solving (in Congress) and a little less back-room deal-making.”

In her first Valley appearance since announcing her candidacy in November, Fiorina took time during a 30-minute speech packed with policy ideas to tell her success story, which began with a promotion from a receptionist job at the then-nine-employee real-estate firm Marcus & Millichap.

“I have never forgotten it was two entrepreneurs (and) a small business that gave me my start,” Fiorina said. “In this great state, it is innovators and entrepreneurs and small-business owners – who are trying to become big-business owners – who provide the engine of growth for our economy.

“Only in America could a woman who is a medieval-history major, a law-school dropout, a full-time receptionist, rise to become the chief executive of one of the largest companies in the world and now be privileged to run for the U.S. Senate.”

In a speech tailored to her audience of business leaders, Fiorina said she would focus on creating jobs by easing the tax and regulation burden on business, and on reducing federal spending.

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