Ann Coulter and James Carville went head-to-head on Good Morning America this morning. Incredibly, James Carville survived.
At least, it sounds incredible until you read the transcript. A total of nine questions were asked of the two pundits, seven of which went to Coulter. Carville, on the other hand, was simply allowed to respond to Coulter without questioning - an unfiltered rebuttal, with free airtime provided by ABC.
This, however, was not the most egregious point of controversy. Carville was allowed, with no challenge from the host, to provide ad-hominem attacks against conservatives – as well as irrelevant, non-sequitur praise for Judge Sonia Sotomayor. The transcript speaks for itself:
SAWYER: Let me ask about that, Ann, because the qualifications, when you read them are so impressive. She was summa cum laude, as James said, at Princeton. She was on the Yale Law Review.
COULTER: Yes. She does have a very impressive background. Academic background. The un-personal background. But as James just alluded to, so did Clarence Thomas. That didn't impress the Democrats. I think it's especially audacious for Democrats to be touting, isn't this wonderful, the first Hispanic nominee to the Supreme Court. Miguel Estrada had a pretty impressive background. He came here as a teenager from Honduras, not speaking English. Graduated from law school. And the Democrats specifically blocked him. And likely headed to the Supreme Court. So, I'm not really interested in hearing the enthusiasm for a Hispanic now after blocking Miguel Estrada, who also has an inspiring story.
CARVILLE: We can only aspire to reach Alberto Gonzales standard, but we will try. I mean, with that kind of competence –
COULTER: I didn’t mention Alberto Gonzales. I mentioned Miguel Estrada.
CARVILLE: I mentioned Alberto Gonzales.
COULTER: He had nothing to do with the Supreme Court.
Indeed. Alberto Gonzales was not, to the best of the information available, being groomed for a Supreme Court nomination. But Miguel Estrada was. Not only is this a neck-snapping non-sequitur (in that it is so completely unrelated to the subject at hand), it is an ad-hominem attack on Miguel Estrada. Guilt by association, one would presume, is nonsense up with which Democrats would not put. Moving on:
SAWYER: Let's – I want to go back and pick up on what you said before. Not leave it before we leave this topic. Ann, you said it is racist what she said?
COULTER: I was quoting Stuart Taylor, not a conservative, writing in "The National Journal.” Yes, certainly saying that someone would decide a case differently, better, in fact, because she is a Latina, rather than a white male. I mean, that statement is, by definition, racist. I'm not saying she's a racist. But the statement sure is.
Here, we have a host who is shocked – shocked, I say – to find that Ann Coulter would accuse the recent Supreme Court nominee of saying racist things. Coulter correctly points out that she was quoting a liberal writer. A word of caution to Coulter: Despite being undeniably correct, that defense hasn’t seemed to work for Rush Limbaugh so far. Next, Carville chimes in with:
CARVILLE: I think she was trying to say, and I think many people do, and I think the President – You know, I have to tell you, as a Democrat – I was just, I was taken aback. I was choking up to see an African-American President of the United States, first Hispanic woman to the Supreme Court. It was quite a moment, I was touched by it. I got to say.
That, by the way, was completely unabridged. He transitioned – and I use the word loosely – the line of discussion from ‘Ann Coulter is a racist,’ to ‘hey look, a Hispanic woman!’ A yo-yo doesn’t change direction that quickly. And of course, this non-sequitur is met with skepticism from the host, right?
SAWYER: Were you moved by the Hispanic breakthrough, Ann?
Apparently not. Coulter gamely keeps up with the intellectual swerving:
COULTER: Why aren't Democrats – why aren't they choking up over Clarence Thomas or Miguel Estrada? Come on. Why are we only supposed to weep only when it's a liberal Hispanic or a liberal black?
Later, finishing up the interview, Sawyer throws a final question to Coulter:
SAWYER: Quick summary question this morning on the politics. Ann, do you think there will be a filibuster among Republicans? Should there be?
COULTER: I think there should be. I think they ought to follow the lead of the President of the United States. President Obama voted against Justice John Roberts, Justice Sam Alito. And he specifically rejected the idea that had been put forward in the past by Orrin Hatch saying, look, the President is the President. He should judge judicial nominees on character judgments. And Obama said, no. I reject that. I'm going to look at how he decides cases. So I think Republicans should follow the President
SAWYER: Will she pass?
COULTER: Who knows? I would not have thought that the Senate would vote 90-3, not to shut down Guantanamo. So, who knows? Public opinion can change things.
Final score: Coulter 1, Liberal Media 0, despite Coulter being outnumbered two-to-one.