[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]
Ann Coulter had an interesting theory about Donald Trump's Birtherism, which she explained last night to Sean Hannity. It seems that it's all a plot by the liberal media to discredit conservatives:
COULTER: Well, I think maybe I've been watching too much Charlie Sheen, because Donald Trump seems perfectly sane to me. Um, I don't know where he gets this two million dollars Obama has spent to keep his birth certificate quiet -- he posted his birth certificate on his Web page.Too bad that the right-wing media themselves kinda shoot down Coulter's theory.
I am glad that Donald Trump is bringing it up, so that people who haven't really been paying attention and don't know that the American Spectator, Human Events, Fox News, ummm -- you know, every conservative outlet has already shot down this rumor -- which, by the way, was started by the Hillary Clinton campaign. Now they will have a chance to find out this is Donald Trump's Pierre Salinger moment -- you can't believe everything you read on the Internet, Obama has produced his birth certificate, there were announcements that ran in two contemporaneous Hawaiian newspapers at the time, the head of the Hawaiian medical records has announced, 'I have seen the long form you all want,' um -- I don't know why the long form is considered more credible than the short form, they're both from the same office.
The State Department accepts the short form -- or as we call it, the birth certificate. Hawaii accepts the birth certificate, short form -- so it is a conspiracy theory that won't die on the Internet, but every responsible conservative organization to look at it has shot it down. Which is why you normally hear it being talked about exclusively on the liberal cable stations.
HANNITY: Well, it's an interesting point, and one of the main people demanding it be released is, interestingly, thrill-up-our leg Chris Matthews ... why don't they just release it? It does raise a question. But you bring up good points, not the least of which -- we're going to talk to Donald Trump on this show later this week, we'll ask him -- I think a broader, bigger issue here is that, all of a sudden an issue that was on the periphery a little bit, he hits it, hits it hard, and people take note. So what is it about him that, you know, when he speaks, people listen -- and you know, those issues resonate.
COULTER: Well, two things. I think the main thing is, no conservative who talks on TV or has a column or has a magazine has mentioned the birth certificate, because we've looked at it and have discounted it. You have people who want to get hits to their Website or want to get listeners to their radio show will keep ginning people up about this. But it is one of the rare conservative con -- well, I suppose it's more conservative than liberal, only because it's anti-Obama, but I don't even know that these are conservatives promoting it. As I say, this came out of the Hillary Clinton campaign.
So Donald Trump is the only person who would be invited on a TV show who is pushing the Birther thing. That's why it's getting attention and of course, liberals are delighted. I know Obama is delighted.
No, you'll notice who's asking him about it -- it's the liberal media. They want to keep talking about it because it helps discredit all opposition to Obama. There are a lot of reasons to think Obama is a very bad president who is doing very bad things to this country. The idea that he was born in Kenya is not one of them. But it allows liberals, the mainstream media, the White House itself to go, well, the opposition is these crazy birthers.
Well, no it isn't. You haven't heard that on Fox News. You haven't heard it in Human Events and National Review or American Spectator -- all of which have shot it down.
You'll notice, for instance, that Coulter conspicuously omits from her list of "responsible" right-wing news organs WorldNutDaily, the center of the Birther Universe and -- last we checked -- a self-proclaimed "conservative" outlet. Indeed, its writers regularly appear on, you guessed it, Sean Hannity's show.
Oh, and they also publish Coulter's syndicated column.
Indeed, all this rant really proves is that Coulter doesn't watch Fox. Because if she did, she would know that Trump has been given free rein to spout his theories on Fox.
And as if to drive that point home, who should appear on Fox the very next hour? Donald Trump, phoning in to Greta Van Susteren's show and trumpeting his Birther theories yet again -- with only murmurs of contradiction from Van Susteren.
Of course, this isn't the only time Trump has been on Fox News promoting these theories with only the slightest hint of pushback, and certainly no tough questions. He had another phone-in with Van Susteren that produced more of the same nonsense. When he went on Bill O'Reilly's show, the pushback was almost unnoticeable, especially by O'Reilly standards.
And it isn't relegated to just Trump appearances. When Sarah Palin went on Jeanine Pirro's show this weekend, both she and the host thought Trump's Birtherism was just peachy -- giving it a Fox News endorsement, not the debunking that Coulter claims is the standard at Fox.
For that matter, the most avid defender of Trump's Birtherism at Fox has been -- you guessed it -- Sean Hannity himself. For three nights running one week, Trump's Birther theories got big boosts from Hannity and his guests:
Guess he must have forgotten about that when Coulter tried to claim you "never hear that" on Fox News. And obviously, Coulter herself hasn't been watching Fox.