She's Back

She's been rushed off of "The Big Picture with Donnie Deutsch."

She's been criticized for consistent cheap shots that draw media attention.

She's been denounced by the people she speaks for.

So what was Ann Coulter doing on C-SPAN last night?

If the cable networks are where we turn for some bombast and bloviation, C-SPAN is the calm and rational (if not occasionally soporific) voice of reason in the political conversation.

The content of C-SPAN might not always be thrilling, but it's nearly always important. They're the grown-ups in public affairs broadcasting. So why were they giving the queen of the political food fight a forum?

I decided to reach out to the folks at C-SPAN to get an idea of the decision-making process behind giving such prime-time real estate to a controversial figure. A speaker whom conservative bloggers have dismissed, saying "Coulter's invective is a sign of weak thinking and unprincipled politicking." (With friends like those …)

After a brief conversation with C-SPAN's Media Relations Manager John Cardarelli, I asked him if there were any concerns inside C-SPAN about the decision. He passed along this statement via e-mail:

No concerns with regard to airing the event--people make controversial statements on our air all the time, be they politically left-leaning or right-leaning. It's up to the viewers to decide whether they agree or disagree with what a particular person says.
I can understand the hands-off, let-the-chips-fall-where-they-may, stance on the part of C-SPAN. But this writer finds it incongruous that sandwiched in between C-SPAN's coverage of the Middle East Peace Process was a presentation by the woman who said she thought Jews needed "to be perfected."

I have to think there was something else going on in Washington, DC or Iowa or New Hampshire that could've generated a bit more light than Coulter's predictable heat.