This time, Franken steals Coulter’s context and uses it to accuse her of lying to her readers.
This is Franken, thinking he has gotten away with it:
Early in the book she writes: ‘New York Times columnist Frank Rich demanded that Ashcroft stop monkeying around with Muslim terrorists and concentrate on anti-abortion extremists.’ Except he didn’t. In the column, written during the anthrax scare, Rich simply criticized Ashcroft’s refusal to meet with Planned Parenthood, which has had years of experience with terrorism…
Franken claims Coulter “totally” misrepresented what Rich said. He even goes so far as to
claim Coulter “pulls this wild distortion, like so very, very many, directly out of her ass” and that Coulter “really works this one into the ground.”
However, Franken did not tell his readers about the very next line from Coulter, where she described the statement to which she had been referring:
Rich claimed that only pure political malice could explain Attorney General Ashcroft’s refusal to meet with Planned Parenthood while purporting to investigate ‘terrorism’.
Yes, those were Coulter’s words. They are easily confused with what Franken wrote because he stole the phrase, “Ashcroft’s refusal to meet with Planned Parenthood” directly from Coulter.
So he stole it from Coulter then accused her of leaving it out. All clear?
Franken also attempts another distortion
The piece doesn’t include the words “monkeying” or “Islamic” or “Muslim,” or make any suggestion that Justice abandon its efforts against al Qaeda.
To the casual reader, he has a point. Rich did not include those words in the piece. However, Coulter did not attribute them to him.
She could have easily done so by, say, putting them in quotes. Instead, those were Coulter’s own words, describing rather than quoting what Rich was demanding – a literary style Franken himself uses within the pages of Lies. At one point Franken wrote, “And what really burns Coulter is that, in the fawning liberal media,” but Coulter didn’t use the word “fawning”. Franken was using his words to describe her words.
And, no, “stop monkeying around” does not mean, “abandon”. The Rich article implicitly accused Ashcroft of having laughably little grasp on terrorism and wasting time on ineffective methods (i.e. — monkeying around).