Trick or Treat?: Ann Coulter would never work for this "West Wing"
  by Debbie Schlussel

It’s nearly Halloween, and everyone’s getting carried away with the costume thing.

AL GORE’S cross-dressing as a Republican, desperately claiming that, if elected,
“I will not add a single employee to the Federal government.”
No, he’ll add a lot of employees. Count on it.

Then, there’s NBC’s, “The West Wing.”
I’ve already written that it ought to be called "The Left Wing."
It’s a one-hour infomercial for continuation of Clinton/Gore.

But now, “The West Wing,” is doing the same cross-dressing act as the man its creator,
Aaron Sorkin, is voting for. The show’s trying to appear balanced. Balanced by adding
former Reagan/Bush staffers, Peggy Noonan (a former Reagan and Bush speechwriter),
and Marlin Fitzwater (a former Reagan and Bush spokesman) as consultants.

And in the last episode by adding a character who’s wearing the costume of conservative
political commentator, best-selling author, columnist, and fellow JWR contributor Ann Coulter.
Only it’s not the real Ann Coulter at all. You’re just supposed to think it is.

Sure, the new character, Ainsley Hayes (actress Emily Procter) is a bright, leggy, blonde
with long straight hair. Just like . . . Ann Coulter. Sure, she’s a lawyer and an articulate
conservative Republican TV political commentator and columnist. And she appears
on “Geraldo.” Just like . . . Ann Coulter.

But, to paraphrase Senator Lloyd Bentsen, I’ve met Ann Coulter, I’ve heard Ann Coulter,
I’ve read Ann Coulter, and Ainsley Hayes, you’re no Ann Coulter.

Coulter would never stoop to taking a job with the Clinton or Gore administration.
As if they’d offer it to her after she soundly beat a newly attractive George
Stephanopolous – I mean, Rob Lowe – on a national political TV show.
But, of course, that’s real life.

On “The West Wing,” conservatives are malleable simpletons, and worse.
Heck, by the end of the show, Hayes is defending the Clinton –oops, Bartlet
— administration to her vicious, evil Republican friends (is there any other kind
of Republican on TV?).

Her Republican chums snidely describe the innocent, caring White House Democrats,
thusly: “I hate these people.” And, “Did you meet anyone in there who isn’t worthless?”
Sorry, Mr. Sorkin, but that’s not what Coulter and her Republican buddies talk about.
I’ve talked with her. And she’s got friends of all ideological persuasions, too. If you made
the smallest effort at researching reality and read The Washington Post’s Howie Kurtz,
you’d know that from his profile of her.

Ann Coulter would never say Clinton administration personnel are “extraordinarily qualified.
Their intent is true. They are righteous, and they are patriots. And I’m their lawyer.”
She couldn’t lie like that. And Coulter would duly laugh at the job offer.

But, in reality, the Clinton administration would never have the guts to offer the job of
Associate White House Counsel to someone principled like Coulter, who has the courage
and chutzpah to take on the Clinton White House’s cornucopia of sordidness.

No, they offered the job to a spineless someone, Cheryl Mills, who then used her race on
the floor of the Senate to defend Bill Clinton’s despicable behavior in the Lewinsky scandal.
She said Clinton shouldn’t be removed from office because his grandfather was the first to
sell to Blacks at his Arkansas store. As if that makes it all okay. No, Coulter has more
respect than to take a job like that, than to defend such scoundrels.
(But it must have worked for Mills. She’s now Senior Vice President of
Oprah’s Oxygen, the fast-sinking cable network.)

“Extraordinarily qualified”? No, Coulter would never describe Clinton personnel that way.
Instead, she’d probably point out how utterly unqualified they were. A First Lady, trying
to co-opt health care, whose only credentials are her abilities to suddenly discover billing
records in her residence and to utter “I do not recall,” or, “It’s not in my recollection.”

A guy name Craig Livingstone, hired by the same First Lady, to illegally obtain and
examine FBI files of about a thousand Americans. Livingstone was eminently qualified
for Clinton White House duty, having previously served as a bar bouncer.

And that’s about the only similarity between the real world and “The West Wing,”
on the first Ainsley/Ann episode. When summoned to the White House by the Chief
of Staff, he tells her that he’s already inspected her FBI file. But she never gave permission.
Sounds familiar.
The real Ann Coulter would’ve raised Cain. The “West Wing” version doesn’t notice
anything wrong with that. Just the type of White House Associate Counsel the Clinton’s love.

No, the real Ann Coulter is nothing like the phony “West Wing” model.
That one’s set up to be a straw man, so don’t expect fairness and balance on the show.
Even when Bush wins the White House.

Sorkin is quick to point out, in November’s George Magazine, that Noonan and Fitzwater
weren’t hired for balance. “They were hired not so much for their Republicanness as much
as for their wisdom.” Actually, they’re being used. If the new Ainsley/Coulter character is
any indication, they were hired in name only.

And anyway, Republicans who take prominent jobs in liberal Democrat administrations
are guys who go both ways, wimpy, non-ideological moderates like David Gergen and
Bill Cohen. Not principled conservatives like Coulter.

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