What would the current debate about the White House strategy to demonize Fox News be without Joy Behar's opinion on the subject?
Fortunatley, the comedienne and "View" co-host took the opportunity to raise this issue Thursday night with her guest conservative author Ann Coulter, and great fun was had by all including folks in the studio who couldn't hold back their laughter.
The fireworks began when Behar said, "[P]eople are p**sed off...because Fox lies a lot." Behar then marvelously accused Fox personalities Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity of playing loose with the facts just moments before she defended -- wait for it!!! -- Dan Rather.
The insanity on display led Coulter to deliciously quip about the media, "There`s more respect for Roman Polanski than for hosts on Fox News" (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, h/t Jeff Poor, file photo):
JOY BEHAR, HOST: Ok, see people are pissed off because and he is too, because Fox lies a lot. They lie. I`ll just give you an example of Glenn Beck, for instance, one of your pals. He said that 45 percent of doctors say they`ll quit health care coverage if reform passes. Now the AMA endorsed Obama`s overhaul in July. So that`s not true of doctors...
ANN COULTER: No, the AMA doesn`t represent all doctors.
BEHAR: All right, well 45 percent of all doctors.
COULTER: That`s like taking a poll of what lawyers think and then saying the ACLU doesn`t say that and that`s a group of lawyers.
BEHAR: No but we have -- listen...
COULTER: The AMA is to lawyers what the ACLU is to lawyers.
BEHAR: Ok so which doctor are you talking to Dr. Weldy (ph) in the middle of nowhere?
COULTER: I saw that poll too -- you can`t call that a lie. You can say I don`t like this poll. And you can take my own poll. And you can`t call it a lie.
BEHAR: I think it`s a lie, he says this is the only country...
COULTER: From my discussions with doctors, I think it`s more like 90 percent. So I agree with you. That`s seems like it`s a poll is underestimating how many doctors are going to drop out of the practice of medicine.
BEHAR: No but the AMA you have to give them some credence.
COULTER: No I don`t. Doctors...
BEHAR: ...that they`re important...
COULTER: No, no it`s like the ABA no it does not represent all doctors.
BEHAR: All right...
COULTER: And in point of fact...
COULTER: Because I have asked doctors what is up with this AMA? And they said it`s all the doctors who can`t practice medicine anymore. They`re all losers.
BEHAR: You know last time you were here Ann you said that most people do not like the public option. But now it`s up to 52 percent who say they want it.
COULTER: No that is a totally phony poll.
BEHAR: Well, your polls are not phony and my polls are?
COULTER: No, you`re calling it a lie.
BEHAR: No that`s a separate thing, I`m talking about -- that was separate.
COULTER: Ok, so on Fox News...
BEHAR: Try to keep up with me.
COULTER: Fox can just put on exactly what you said and say she told a lie. She said 57 percent support the public option.
BEHAR: 52 percent.
COULTER: 52 whatever.
BEHAR: That was the poll I saw. Ok...
COULTER: Ok the polls, the poll that Glenn Beck cited was a poll he saw.
BEHAR: Ok and he also said -- and how about this one. He said this is only country that has automatic citizenship. That`s not true. Brazil has it, Canada has it, Guatemala has it, a lot of countries have it. So he really needs to get his facts together.
COULTER: Ok, that`s -- assuming you are right and I did not know that. I`ve not looked at what other countries make you a citizen for simply being born here.
BEHAR: Take my word for it. Now how about this from Hannity...
COULTER: But the point is that isn`t a lie. Ok, he made a mistake.
BEHAR: Well, it`s uninformed.
COULTER: Look, if you`re going to talk that much, he has a radio show. He has a TV show. If you`re going to talk that much, people are going to make errors, they`re going trip over themselves. To be constantly jumping down...
BEHAR: But here`s what...
COULTER: I mean, they treat Fox News like they`re Stalin and every little thing has to be analyzed.
BEHAR: That`s not true.
COULTER: There`s more respect for Roman Polanski than for hosts on Fox News...
COULTER: Everybody makes mistakes and by the way just yesterday Little Contessa Brewer on MSNBC was introducing Jesse Jackson and introduced him as Al Sharpton. I think that`s a little bigger than making a mistake about how many countries say you`re a citizen if you`re born here.
BEHAR: Listen, I`m not going to deal with Contessa Brewer right now.
COULTER: No, if I`m defending Glenn Beck, you are defending Contessa Brewer because she`s yours.
BEHAR: No she`s not, I don`t even know who she is.
How about Hannity? This is another that I loved. He says the "Cash for Clunkers" -- in "Cash for Clunkers" you can go to a junk yard, tow it to your house, and get $4,500. That`s not true. You have to own the car for a year.
So why is he putting that out? I don`t know why he did that?
COULTER: Ok, how about the one from my column that went up today with everyone on MSNBC citing the Willie Horton ad as an act of racism and the introduction of vicious personal politics.
BEHAR: Oh boy that was really, yes, he was pretty vicious.
COULTER: No. No, no and they keep doctoring what they`re claiming was the Bush ad to make it look like they showed a picture of Willie Horton. Anyone who knows anything about the 1988 campaign knows that George Bush never showed a picture of Willie Horton. They scrubbed and erased from that ad, in fact...
BEHAR: You`re talking about Bush...
COULTER: Right that was 1988.
BEHAR: That was part of his campaign against Dukakis, yes.
COULTER: Correct and it was a fantastic ad. The Furlough Program was unbelievable than letting convicted murders out.
BEHAR: Can`t go down memory lane that far.
COULTER: No, you`re going to start talking back that lies, that is a lie being promoted nightly on MSNBC.
The point is the lies on other stations are so much more egregious, so much more relevant. And you`re disagreeing with a poll because you have another poll that says something different, that isn`t a lie.
BEHAR: Ok, and then what about Karl Rove? This really annoyed me also. Can we get that sound on tape for Karl Rove? He`s spoken out a lot about the fight too. So listen to this. About Fox.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARL ROVE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: If you go out and call an entire news network, you know, out and basically tell the rest of the media don`t emulate them, don`t follow them, don`t be like them or we`re going to attack you too, it`s across the line.
This is an administration that`s getting very arrogant and slippery in its dealings with people and if you dare to oppose them, they`re going to come hard at you and they`re going to cut your legs off.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BEHAR: That`s really the height of hypocrisy. This is the same guy who went after Valerie Plame out of the CIA agent. And he`s talking about vindictiveness from the left? I mean give me a break? Come on, Ann?
COULTER: No, I`m not following the parallels at all.
BEHAR: I am.
COULTER: ...at all.
BEHAR: ...it`s called vindictive.
COULTER: George Bush was interviewed...
BEHAR: They come hard at you and they`re going to cut your legs off.
COULTER: George Bush was interviewed on CNN by Larry King. He was interviewed by Brian Williams. He was interviewed on all of these stations. He never stood up and said don`t listen to Dan Rather the way the President of the United States tells Congressional Republicans don`t listen to talk radio and Fox News.
BEHAR: I think didn`t he get Dan Rather fired from CBS?
COULTER: Hang on, no Dan Rather got himself fired by running lying slanderous mocked up National Guard documents and treating it as news against the sitting president in a time of war...
BEHAR: Isn`t there a lawsuit around about that...
COULTER: And still, you never saw George Bush saying don`t listen to Dan Rather but then Obama gets his feelings hurt.
BEHAR: Well, you know...
COULTER: And that`s why I think, I tended to agree with what Rove just said there.
BEHAR: Well, of course.
COULTER: At first what he was trying to do, no I mean, about why is the White House doing this? Look, when you have Helen Thomas and all of these liberals saying, wow, this is stupid, there`s -- people are wondering why the White House is doing this.
That`s why I said, at first, I thought it was because it`s not believing; they don`t want Fox always stories being picked up in other places.
BEHAR: So why do you think they`re doing it? Why do you think they are doing it?
COULTER: They make the excellent point that they aren`t picking them up anyway. And Mickey Cal (ph) says, it`s to raise money from the base. I don`t think so where you got money from the base by attacking the Fox.
BEHAR: Well, it might be a distraction from the fact that progressives are on his case about the public option and Afghanistan. Just like Bush used orange alerts to distract us from his shenanigans you know what I mean.
Sadly, we do, Joy. We do.