In Fox News' latest effort to demagogue James Hoffa's Labor Day speech urging supporters to vote out Republican members of Congress, Fox & Friends attempted to get Fox News contributor and right-wing pundit Ann Coulter to decry Hoffa for supposedly using inflammatory rhetoric. Coulter has previously fantasized about poisoning a Supreme Court justice, suggested that Bill Clinton should have been "impeach[ed] or assassinate[d]," and is currently hawking a book in which she paints her political opponents as "demonic."
Fox & Friends Tries To Get Coulter To Decry Hoffa's Supposed Inflammatory Rhetoric
Kilmeade Asks Coulter: "Would It Have Been That Hard For The President Just To Say ... 'I Can't Condone' " Hoffa's Rhetoric? From the September 7 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:
BRIAN KILMEADE (co-host): The president again -- he had something happen that totally distracted his message. On Monday he wanted to give a little precursor to his big speech. But what ends up -- Jimmy Hoffa introduces him, introduces him or preceded him, and at which time he violates all that decorum that we thought we were going to instill in society last year that was urged on by our president. So Hoffa says, get those SOBs and the tea party and all these negativities --
STEVE DOOCY (co-host): Take 'em out.
KILMEADE: The president won't condemn it. And least Jay Carney through the -- says the president won't condemn it. Let's listen.
JAY CARNEY (White House press secretary) [video clip]: Mr. Hoffa speaks for himself. He speaks for the labor movement, AFL-CIO. The president speaks for himself. I speak for the president. You know, what the president was glad to do yesterday was have the opportunity to present his views on the importance of working Americans and on the importance of taking measures to help working Americans to create jobs and grow the economy.
KILMEADE: He was getting hammered by an ABC reporter. That, you know -- this was no --
DOOCY: Jake Tapper.
KILMEADE: -- conservative blogger.
KILMEADE: So what do you think? Would it have been that hard for the president just to say, "I don't -- I can't condone this"?
COULTER: I'm glad you bring this up, because I think you're being ironic when you say we all expected rhetoric to change.
GRETCHEN CARLSON (co-host): But back to the actual message where he called out the tea party and sort of this rhetoric that the president said that everyone should lay off of after Gabby Giffords was shot. Do you find it ironic that the White House now does not have a response to that?
COULTER: No. No. Like I say, I think you are playing when you pretend to be shocked.
DOOCY: There is a double standard. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/7/11]
Unlike Hoffa, Coulter Has A History Of Violent Political Rhetoric
Coulter Was On Fox To Hawk Her Most Recent Book, Which Portrays Her Political Opponents As "Demonic." Coulter's most recent book, published in 2011, is Demonic: How the Liberal Mob is Endangering America. In the book, Coulter writes that "[t]he demon is a mob, and the mob is demonic," and later adds, "The Democratic Party is the party of the mob, irrespective of what the mob represents. Democrats activate mobs, depend on mobs, coddle mobs, publicize and celebrate mobs -- they are the mob." [Ann Coulter, Demonic, Crown Forum, 6/7/11, via Google Books]
Coulter Described The Kent State Massacre As "What You Do With A Mob." From the June 6 edition of Fox News' Hannity:
COULTER: Americans have always understood the danger of mobs. They are always dangerous, they are always demonic. Thus, the Shays' Rebellion, creating our constitution, the Boston Tea Party, not being so warm, feeling so warmly about that. You had during the Civil --
SEAN HANNITY (host): I like the Boston Tea Party though. Taxation without representation.
COULTER: Well, it was very peaceful. The only thing more peaceful than the original Boston Tea Party are today's tea parties. Where they leave the Mall cleaner than when they got there. Then during the Civil War, you had, again, Democrats in New York engaging in massive, horrible mobbings against blacks in New York -- lynchings, draggings by genitals. And Abraham Lincoln seized another Democrat mob -- they're always the Democrats -- sends the military a little detour up to New York, crushes the mob, goes back, wins the war, and then Abraham Lincoln carries New York in the next election. So we've had mob uprisings before, but we've always known you can't reason with a mob. I think conservatives, I think a lot of peaceable Americans have forgotten that. We did have something as close as this country got to the French Revolution in the 60s with the Weathermen and SDS and the bombings.
HANNITY: And you have some interesting stuff in here about our buddy Bill Ayers, which was pretty -- I'm not going to give it up because I want people to buy it. Alright --
COULTER: A small item but the point is Nixon came in, shut it down. There was the shooting at Kent State and gosh, I know, liberals don't like it and you look on Nexis and oh, the whole country was embarrassed. We'll I'm not embarrassed. That's what you do with a mob. They were monstrous at Kent State. It was being led by Bill Ayers. [Fox News, Hannity, 6/6/11, via Media Matters]
Coulter Compared Former Education Department Official Writing The Forward Of A Book To Polanski "Anally Raping A 13-Year-Old." From the October 1, 2009, edition of Fox News' Hannity:
HANNITY: Here's where this gets to be a big problem, Ann, because he even admitted in 2000 himself that this sophomore, who he said -- he said -- is 15 years old, came to him and said that he was having a relationship with an adult male. His advice was not to tell the authorities, because by definition by definition that would be, as The Washington Times said, statutory rape. His advice was to ask if he was wearing a condom.
COULTER: Right. I mean, I think that story to avoid the squid ink of the left claiming that this is an anti-homosexual thing -- tell the same story where it's a girl who's having sex with an adult man in a bathroom at a bus stop. I mean, that's the point here. And I liked your list at the beginning of all the problems Obama's had with the czars, and appointees, and cabinet nominees. But I have a slightly different list.
You have ACORN encouraging and counseling these two, well, actors as it turns out, how to avoid taxes, how to bring Salvadorian sex slaves into the country, underage girls. You have all of Hollywood and media elites defending Roman Polanski for anally raping a 13-year-old, and now you have this guy [then-Department of Education official Kevin Jennings] who's written the introduction to Queering Elementary Education. I mean, that is the issue here. And you mentioned Bill Ayers.
Can't you just let kids be kids? No, they want to sexualize kids. And forget the homosexual aspect of it, just sexualizing kids generally. And teaching them about how to come out or how to deal with homosexuality in kindergarten -- it's monstrous what they're doing. [Fox News, Hannity, 10/1/09, via Media Matters]
Coulter: "Zeke Emanuel Is On My Death List." From the August 12, 2009, edition of Fox News' Hannity:
COULTER: By the way, totally ironically, Zeke Emanuel is on my death list. Hold the applause. I'm going to be on the death panel, then I'm in favor of them.
HANNITY: In other words, you get to pick who dies.
COULTER: Right. I have a list. Should I start with the As? [Fox News, Hannity, 8/12/09, via Media Matters]
Coulter On Former Sen. Lincoln Chafee: "They Shot The Wrong Lincoln." Coulter titled her August 30, 2006, syndicated column on the Rhode Island Senate race: "They Shot the Wrong Lincoln." The headline was a reference to then-Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), whom she excoriated throughout the piece while expressing her support for his challenger in the September 12, 2006, Republican primary, Stephen Laffey. [Human Events, 8/30/06]
Coulter Suggested NY Times Staff Members Should Be "Executed." After radio host Melanie Morgan asserted that if then-New York Times executive editor Bill Keller were convicted of treason for publishing leaked information she "would have no problem with him being sent to the gas chamber," Coulter wrote in her July 12, 2006, column: "I prefer a firing squad, but I'm open to a debate on the method of execution." That same day, during an appearance on the radio, Coulter again suggested that New York Times staff members should be "executed." [Media Matters, 7/13/06, 7/14/06]
Coulter Fantasized About "Put[ting] Rat Poison In Justice Stevens's Créme Brulée." In a January 2006, appearance at Philander Smith College in Little Rock, Arkansas, Coulter said of then-Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens: "We need somebody to put rat poison in Justice Stevens's créme brulée." Coulter attempted to explain away her remark as "just a joke, for you in the media." [Associated Press, 1/27/06]
Coulter: Bill Clinton "Was A Very Good Rapist." From a January 3, 2005, New York Observer interview with Coulter:
[Gurley] What should we remember about Bill Clinton?
[Coulter] "Well, he was a very good rapist. I think that should not be forgotten." [New York Observer, 1/10/05, via Media Matters]
Coulter Said That Debate Over Clinton Should Have Been "Whether To Impeach Or Assassinate" Him. Coulter argued that the national debate during the Monica Lewinsky controversy should not have focused on whether Clinton "did it," but "whether to impeach or assassinate" him. The quotation appeared in Coulter's 1998 book High Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Case against Bill Clinton:
In this recurring nightmare of a presidency, we have a national debate about whether he "did it," even though all sentient people know he did. Otherwise there would be debates only about whether to impeach or assassinate. [Ann Coulter, High Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Case against Bill Clinton, Regnery, 1998, via Media Matters]
- Coulter Later Asserted That Her Suggestion Came In The Context Of A Description Of "The Entire History Of Impeachment, Which We Got From The British." On the August 31, 2006, edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, Colmes challenged Coulter to distinguish her suggestion that the issue was "whether to assassinate or impeach" Clinton from the film Death of a President (Borough Films), which dramatically portrays the assassination of President Bush. Colmes asked: "I guess it's OK to joke about assassinating a president, but it's not OK to represent it in a dramatic presentation, right?" In response, Coulter asserted that her suggestion came in the context of a description of "the entire history of impeachment, which we got from the British. I explained how we changed it here in America. In Britain ... one of the punishments [for impeachment] was hanging." [Fox News, Hannity & Colmes, 8/31/06, via Media Matters]
Even During Her Appearance On Fox & Friends, Coulter's Rhetoric Was Too Extreme For Co-Host Carlson. During her appearance on Fox & Friends, Coulter attacked school teachers as "useless," a statement from which co-host Gretchen Carlson immediately disassociated herself:
COULTER: But what I really think needs to be attacked about this that no one is mentioning is: This is Jimmy Hoffa, president of the Teamsters. They used to be truck drivers, and pipe fitters. But now --
DOOCY: They've got a history.
COULTER: Now, he's representing public school teachers. What, kindergarten teachers? Cafeteria workers? Fighting for every last bit of their government pension? What a pathetic downfall.
COULTER: And moreover, how about a little of this tough talk back when the Teamsters supported drilling in ANWR. You know, real jobs for real men as opposed to kindergarten teachers. And how about --
KILMEADE: And they're not all fired up about --
COULTER: And how about fighting for nuclear power plants being installed? This should -- that is evidence of the decline of the nation that he's not even representing men who have actual jobs.
DOOCY: Good point.
COULTER: He's representing useless public sector workers.
KILMEADE: Who doesn't want the free trade agreements passed, who's not thrilled about a potential amnesty for illegal immigrants.
COULTER: Who wanted ANWR. We all want ANWR. We want gas prices and --
CARLSON: Well, OK. I don't --
COULTER: They want hundreds of thousands of jobs or at least they used to. That's the old Teamsters.
CARLSON: I don't know if we can call kindergarten teachers useless, though. I don't want to say that.
COULTER: I don't think they need to be government workers with fully paid [unintelligible].
CARLSON: OK. But I don't want to say that teachers are useless.
COULTER: No, I will. They are government workers. Let's turn it over to private, to vouchers, to charter schools. No, they fight for every last dime. They get summers off. They're off at two. And they make more money than most of those pipe fitters who no longer have jobs.
CARLSON: But back to the actual message where he called out the tea party. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/7/11]