Elizabeth Edwards Explains Ann Coulter Phone-In: Confront Her

In addition to reiterating both of the Edwards’ positions on gay marriage, Elizabeth Edwards comments to Salon on her recent Hardball with Chris Matthews dialogue with Ann Coulter. Edwards phoned in to tell Coulter to stop the personal attacks against her husband. Some folks told Edwards that paying Coulter attention was offering her legitimacy, and publicity.

Edwards responds:

“Ignoring the fact that she exists doesn’t make her go away. If it did, you wouldn’t hear me utter her name. So I think maybe the better thing to do is simply confront people like her. Are you going to stop them? Under no circumstances will you stop them. But maybe you empower other people to stand up, and maybe that has an effect. When I travel, so many older people thank me for what I did. Because the vile kind of way Ann Coulter thinks and talks, that was not ever part of the public discourse until recently…

Ee…I knew she was doing ‘Hardball,’ and I knew it was a call-in show. So I called the [Edwards] campaign about getting the number, and they were like, Oh, that’s a good idea. And then I mentioned the 2003 column [where Coulter mocked John Edwards’ discussion of their son Wade’s death in a car crash] and you could see them get worried, like ‘Oh, my God, she’s carrying around in her mind a 2003 column? Maybe we don’t want her calling …’. And later on, I talked to somebody, not an advisor — I really don’t have anybody advising me — and not someone in the campaign. She’d been in a previous campaign, and she said, ‘Oh, I wouldn’t have done that. I think that you put yourself at risk, subject to criticism unnecessarily.’ I understand the advice — if you were advising somebody you might say that — but that exact attitude is what protects somebody like Ann Coulter. Nobody wants to jump in the mud puddle with her…

…So I got the number in case I wanted to call in. And I sat and watched [the show], and I thought, well, there’s really nothing to call in about. It was getting close to the time I had to leave. I might have gotten on a plane and left — I really might not have ever called. Maybe Chris [Matthews] brought some of those things up because he knew I was watching.”

The Salon Interview: Elizabeth Edwards [tr]

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  1. Sean Rq says

    This is the type of approach that I advocated (see my comment below on Phelps). Don’t tolerate this hate speech in society.

    Big hug to Elizabeth (you look fab love!)

  2. Rebecca Steele says

    I know people personally who were jailed for comments casually made on the internet as to what they felt should happen to our President George Bush. Why is Anne Coulter allowed to make threats and open wounds and have no repercussions? Why does freedom of speech work for one side of the political arena only?

  3. Marco says

    Edwards shined light on what Coulter truly is in that phone-in dustup. A lying, classless partisan who isn’t interested in conservatism but shameless self-promotion, smears and distortion. She made Ann look like the fool we know she truly is.

  4. Stephen says

    I applaud her action.
    BUT, Elizabeth Edwards is not seeking to be president. This was courageous, and she is to be applauded, but let’s not get all too gushy about this.

  5. Psychedelic Pariah says

    These comments are embarrassing. Trust me, it won’t be but mere moments (in political time, that is) that you’re all talking about why the Breck Girl can’t shut up his hag wife. Trust me, it’s coming.

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