Patti Wenzel

Coulter’s schtick a hit with conservatives

By - Apr 21st, 2010 04:00 am
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Photos by Patti Wenzel

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter spoke at UWM Tuesday night

Depending on your viewpoint, Ann Coulter is either a hot conservative pin-up with a brain and wicked sense of humor, or a loathsome half-witted tele-bimbo who slings sarcastic mud at liberal ideals.

Coulter was the featured speaker at UWM last night, sponsored by the College Republicans. The crowd was warm and friendly, many sporting Tea Party buttons. The lack of protesters was expected as 30 UWM security and Milwaukee Police officers searched attendees and fanned out throughout the room.

After a brief introduction by WISN 1130AM radio host Vicki McKenna, who referred to Coulter as “a community organizer we can all respect and a sister of Liberty,” she took the stage to a standing ovation.

Coulter opened by thanking Wisconsin for beer and Joe McCarthy, “and we should repeat history and throw back a PBR and throw the commies out of Washington,” this fall.

From there she moved through her usual mix of snarky one-liners, including “Barack Obama is working toward being the first and last black president,” “Cap and Trade legislation, or as it’s also known, put a new tax on everything beginning in 2010,” and “Obama is just like Clinton without the stains on the carpet.”

A call for 20-foot walls the length of our southern border to keep illegal aliens out drew big applause from the audience, as did mentions of President Ronald Reagan and swipes at CNN and MSNBC.

After 25 minutes of schtick, Coulter took questions from the audience. At first they were reluctant and she asked if she would have to criticize her own speech. Most of the questions were softballs about Sarah Palin’s chances in 2012 (Coulter feels she shouldn’t run, but remain a cheerleader for the conservative cause), her early political influences (Milton Friedman, William Simon and Barry Goldwater), political up and comers (New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie) and her opinion on President Obama’s “surrender” tour (she said it was in line with Democratic foreign policy and Obama’s need to be liked).

It was a diverse group of conservatives listening to Ann Coulter.

“Obama needs to learn you can’t make people like you, but you can make them fear and respect you,” Coulter said in response.

She was challenged by two questions, one on U.S. policy toward Israel and another on gays in the military and in the Republican party.

When asked why the United States continues to support Israel, described as a “military police state with archaic tribal rules” by the questioner, she admitted her lack of knowledge on the topic, adding that Israel is an ally and even though they are imperfect we can’t go against our friends.

As for gays, Coulter rambled and stumbled with her answer discussing the sanctity of heterosexual marriage, that the military isn’t calling for a change to the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, and that homosexuals and even women in the military have had a detrimental effect on our fighting ability.

But she quickly added a Jerry Seinfeld-esque “not that there’s anything wrong with that” mea culpa when she realized how decisive her remarks were.

She added that gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered people should flock to the Republican Party because homosexuals tend to have higher incomes, are victims of crimes and are reviled by Muslim radicals.

“We want to cut your taxes,” she said, while Democrats want to spend it on women and children; “One party wants to punish criminals, while the other says let’s try to  understand them,” and “We want to stop Muslim fanatics, and you know what they do to gays.” She added that today’s Democratic Party has also eased off their support of gay marriage and military service, to be just like Republicans on those issues.

“So  [gays] have to be Republicans,” she said.

The audience ate up her answers and floor show, and as entertaining as she was for the choir, she offered little real policy debate or insight on today’s important issues. Instead of being sponsored by College Republicans, she should be on the Bonkerz comedy tour.

The Zombie protest consisted of dancing and smokes.There was a small, hidden protest to Coulter’s appearance by the Milwaukee Zombie Coalition. In a small garden between Lubar and Bolton halls, approximately 20 “zombies” danced to Michael Jackson’s Thriller and smoked cigarettes. Earlier, zombie spokesperson and UWM student Kyle Schulz said the protest was to oppose the “hateful ignorance represented by Coulter and her supporters. As zombies, we protest Coulter’s wanton destruction of perfectly good (and most likely delicious) brains.” Unfortunately, the only people who knew of the protest against Coulter were members of the press who had been alerted earlier in the day.

Coulter is the author of seven New York Times bestsellers, including Guilty: Liberal Victims and Their Assault on America and If Democrats Had Any Brains, They’d Be Republicans; a legal correspondent for the right-wing news site, Human Events, and a frequent guest on network and cable news programs.

Categories: Commentary, Politics

0 thoughts on “Coulter’s schtick a hit with conservatives”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I like how Coulter apparently spelled out the primary issue i have with boilerplate conservatives in one sentence: “We want to cut your taxes.” With conservatives like Coulter, concepts like liberty and freedom apply to the bank account and nowhere else.

    Anyway, like you said Patti, she should be considered a comedian rather than a legit speaker. “she offered little real policy debate or insight on today’s important issues.” And in other news, water is wet.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ann Coulter is essentially known for her controversial and inflammatory statements on a wide variety of important topics, many of which she fails to understand even in fundamental ways. Formerly trotted out by many cable and network news programs during sweeps, her fifteen minutes ended awhile back when even they realized her act was getting tired and the fallout wasn’t worth the price. A defining moment was her statement on the “Today Show” regarding the 9/11 widows:

    “These broads are millionaires, lionized on TV and in articles about them, reveling in their status as celebrities and stalked by griefparrazies. I have never seen people enjoying their husband’s death so much.”

    As her UWM appearance demonstrated, this is neither a blazing intellect nor a particularly interesting person, simply someone who publicly exploits the issues of the day for personal gain through her own insecurities. The overall flavor is that she’s slightly deranged, even to the wingnut constituency. Because of that, she is repellant to many prominent conservatives, but her appeal to the Teabag Party is unsurprising. She’s an embarrassment to Republicans, and insulting to anyone who wants an informed and meaningful dialogue as the country grapples with very serious matters.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Coultergeist: Lighten up. Coulter fills the same role as Jon Stewart or Bill Maher. She is not there for “informed and meaningful dialogue any more than they are. It’s purely for entertainment.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Wow, you’re correct. Ann Coulter, Jon Stewart, and Bill Maher fulfill precisely the same roles. I don’t know how I could’ve thought otherwise.

    Oh, wait-Jon Stewart and Bill Maher are comics who have their own highly successful shows, and very often have what could be characterized as “informed and meaningful dialogue” on their own and with guests- even with guests who sometimes disagree with them! Imagine that- they are both actually able to comprehend and explore more than one side of an issue!

    They are both pretty funny, very talented, and have a robust following (even without the Teabaggers). And neither is known for regularly spewing the kind of drivel that is a hallmark of Ms. Coulter’s world, although Bill Maher’s certainly had his issues.

    Nope, I guess they have very little in common with her after all. But I’ll agree she’s entertaining in a certain way, like watching a car wreck.

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