Distortion and hypocrisy: cordial or friendly with Coulter?

Rather than slaying her on the spot, Franken admits being “cordial” when he met Ann Coulter.

However,  on page 22 of Lies (paperback) he accuses Coulter of lying about their interaction. He says she told a reporter she was “friendly” with him.

As the astute observer will note, the word “cordial” is a direct synonym for “friendly”—a fact somehow lost on Franken’s enchanted reader.

The astute observer will also note that being friendly is not the same as being friends. One can, after all, behave friendly toward a complete stranger. Watch how Franken twists “friendly” into “friends”:

Ann and I are friends.

I personally wasn’t aware of that myself until I read it in the New York Observer.

[p. 5, Lies]

Thus Franken sets the false idea in his readers’ minds.

Worse still, Franken puts “friendly with” in quotes to make it look like a direct quote from Coulter:

…she told the writer from the Observer that she was “friendly with” Al Franken.

[p. 5, Lies]

In fact, the writer, George Gurley of the New York Observer, was not quoting Coulter. It was his word choice, giving his own description of what Coulter said rather than quoting her. Coulter says the reporter misunderstood.

In the context of the interview, it is easy to see how a misunderstanding could happen. During the interview, Gurley and Coulter discussed who was and was not a “liberal enemy” of hers. When describing the relationship between Coulter and Franken as “friendly,” it probably made sense to Gurley to do so because when Coulter and Franken met, they had been “cordial.” The responsibility rests with Gurley since he chose the word. Franken is guilty of hypocrisy on the issue for doing zero research or fact checking into the matter before blindly repeating it (an accusation he repeatadly levels against various right wing pundits, including Bernie Goldberg in the pages of Lies).