February 1st, 2008
03:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Coulter wants Clinton over McCain

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/02/01/art.coulter.gi.jpg caption=" Ann Coulter said Thursday she'd back Hillary Clinton over John McCain."]

(CNN) - In the latest sign that a conservative backlash is starting to build against John McCain, conservative commentator Ann Coulter said Thursday she is prepared to vote for Hillary Clinton over the Arizona senator in a general election match up.

Speaking on Fox's "Hannity and Colmes," Coulter took aim at the GOP frontrunner, and suggested he was little more than a Republican in name only.

"If you are looking at substance rather than if there is an R or a D after his name, manifestly, if he's our candidate, than Hillary is going to be our girl, because she's more conservative than he is," Coulter said. "I think she would be stronger on the war on terrorism."

Coulter took aim at McCain's positions - particularly his fervent anti-torture stance - and said he and Clinton differ little on the issues. Coulter also said she is prepared to campaign on Clinton's behalf should McCain win the party's nomination.

"John McCain is not only bad for Republicanism, which he definitely is - he is bad for the country," she said.

Coulter is the latest high profile conservative to express dismay with McCain's surging candidacy. Talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh said Wednesday McCain's rise was the product of a 'fractured' conservative base and an "uninspiring" GOP presidential field.

"He is not the choice of conservatives, as opposed to the choice of the Republican establishment — and that distinction is key," Limbaugh continued. "The Republican establishment, which has long sought to rid the party of conservative influence since Reagan, is feeling a victory today as well as our friends in the media."

McCain has long been at odds with conservative members of his party. — Exit polls from the early-primary states have shown the he has consistently lost among those primary voters who identify themselves as conservative. But he passed a key test Tuesday in winning Florida's primary, the first early contest that only allowed registered Republicans to participate.

Reacting to criticisms from his party's most conservative quarters, McCain told the San Francisco Gate Thursday, "I'll continue to reach out to all in the party, try to unite the party, until everybody realizes that the only way we're going to defeat the Democratic candidate is through a united party."

- CNN Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • John McCain
soundoff (445 Responses)
  1. Matt Scott

    "Coulter took aim at McCain's positions — particularly his fervent anti-torture stance — and said he and Clinton differ little on the issues."

    I'm not a McCain backer by any means but are you trying to tell me that there is actually backlash for thinking that torturing people is wrong?!

    It's wrong for other countries to do it but if WE do it that makes it right somehow?

    February 1, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  2. James

    As a liberal/progressive...I didn't know how much they hated McCain...until I listened to Rush and Hannity after Florida. There is a number of ways to look at this. If McCain wins...then he shifts the Republican party back to the center (which apparently destroys the Republican Party). If McCain loses and especially loses to Clinton...then Rush, Hannity, Coulter etc. can help get Clinton in and have 4-years of blaming McCain and attacking Clinton to "rebuild" the Republican Party. The strategy is totally self-serving as though lose their influence if McCain gains control of the party. They also see history backing them...see the whole Ford wins nomination over Reagan...Ford loses to Carter...then Reagan comes back in 4-years and kicks Carter out. That is totally their strategy if Romney can't win (and he can't as long as Huck hangs around).

    This has made all of the Right Wing radio much more amusing to listen to...it is going to be very amusing to see what they say when the She-Devil(Clinton) runs against the Devil(McCain)...they have been demonizing both for so long that I think most of their listeners will vote for neither and will stay home. (no matter what they say and if they flip flop...I already hear Rush slipping)

    February 1, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  3. B. Cee

    Ann for Hillary????? Yeah, Right! I give that a 5 question mark...but then again...

    Will there ever be a WOMAN Presidential candidate or VP running mate in the Republican Party? Wondering how Republican Women are feeling not seeing any women in this presidential race?, and I know an African-American on that side is out of the question but a Clinton-Obama or a Obama-Clinton Democratic ticket?...WOW, that would be Nuclear not to mention Historic. (in terms of Votes & Votes is what will win the Whitehouse). How would Republican women & the few Republican male/female minorities vote when they get in that booth? Party Loyalty or Race/Gender?

    February 1, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  4. Real Republicians

    I'm amazed that a so called conservative pundit would make such a comment. I quess she feels she will make more money and keep her face on TV longer if Hillary is elected. Traitor is good a word for her, Judas has been replaced with Ann Coulter. She is neither a Republican or Conservative nor is she an American, but simply out for Ann Coulter.

    February 1, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  5. Joey

    It is a great day when morons Coulter and Rush come out aginst John McCain. These people have been spewing crap out of their pie holes for far too long, hopefully their audienced will wake up and realize that common sense is a lot better that principles. Until they lose their audience they are gonna keep spewing crap. WAKE UP PEOPLE

    February 1, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  6. S Williams

    Proof positive that Hillary is a war hawk that will keep our men and women in Iraq and who knows where else indefinitely.

    February 1, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  7. Dena

    Oh please Ann, vote for a republican, the democrats don't want you either

    February 1, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  8. M. Fitzgerald, Fl.

    What a great endorsement for Clinton!

    February 1, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  9. Greg from NC

    Fervent anti torture stance! Let's see.......who in the entire city of Washington D.C. is more qualified to take a stance on torture? Read McCains biography. Totured beyond belief, Hanoi Hilton. And you Ann. You were probably playing with your Barbie dolls! Give us a break!

    February 1, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  10. kathleen

    you go ann...I'M VOTING FOR OBAMA

    February 1, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  11. AJ, IL

    Another poor attempt of the conservative Republican media to ignite the base. Ann, like Sean Hannity, is a Mitt Romney supporter. Trying to slam McCain by saying she would vote and campaign for Hillary Clinton. And it the same breath pull Hillary Clinton's name closer to the conservative base of the Republican Party. Heh heh heh heh! Sorry, i can see right through that weak plan of Ann Coulter. There may be major disagreements I have against McCain but he is a Republican regardless what you say.

    Obama in '08!

    February 1, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  12. krystyn

    this is a ploy. this woman is so despised by so many people, that whoever she supports people will shy away from. Well done. There's no way in hades she'll really support Hillary.

    February 1, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  13. Illinois voter

    So much for a Hillary Clinton backlash, Obama fans. Even the Republicans know that she is the best choice for president.

    Hillary '08

    February 1, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  14. Reg

    Her opinion means no more than Chuck's, Oprah's, Barbra's, Arnold's, Rudy's, Peter's, Paul's or Mary's. Why do these egotists think Americans need to know who they support? I think Americans can make up their own minds. Let's stop trying to brainwash the public with this nonsense.

    It's bad enough we have to hear all the campaign ads - now the nobodys are joining in.

    February 1, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  15. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Democrats, ask yourself are they going to start the Iraq war hearings if Hillary becomes president. Are you reading and listening to the hearings that are currently going on in regards to the Iraq war, the republicans are. Hearings about the Iraq war didn't just start, think about the disclosure of the 963 lies. Iraq war hearings will be a distraction for Hillary as a president which will include her and the business of the economy, health care, education and an end to the Iraq war will be put on the back burner and 4 years later we will have a republican president. Obama as president, who voted no to the Iraq war, will not be part of this baggage. Think about it people, vote Obama if you want someone who is ready on day 1.

    February 1, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  16. Molly

    I am shocked that Ann Coulter will actually support Hillary Clinton, who is normally a favorite target of her attacks. I also think that Hillary is a much better candidate than John McCain and am supporting her. Has hell frozen over?

    February 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  17. Kelly

    OH GREAT....Im a Hillary supporter and having this snake in her corner doesnt help at all. Im going to bury this story in the back of my mind and pretend i never read it! lol

    February 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  18. Dennis

    Question is, will Coulter's endorsement of Clinton in the General Election really help her? I think that would turn off more liberals than turn on Conservatives.

    February 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  19. Steven McAfee Richardson, TX

    Who cares what Coulter or Limbaugh say? Isn't this a democracy where the majority rules, the people have voted and that is what matters. Not what entertainers say.

    February 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  20. Simon

    I find it utterly pathetic that Conservatives seem currently more concerned about what the outcome of this election will do for their party than for the United States of America. But, if the far-right are shying away from McCain, it's good to know that he's simultaneously gaining ground among more moderate members of the Republican party. Time to start betting on into which end of spectrum the majority of America actually falls .

    Clearly the Republican machine is truly worried about the prospect of a candidate they can't possibly predict. McCain's last debate (and possibly entire political career) shows he'll fight for principle, even if it hurts himself, let alone the party with whom he already holds a less-than-amicable relationship. Behold the machine in action, tossing out totally absurd, utterly false, and intentionally fear-inducing statements to "motivate" their base into doing what they'd like them to do.

    February 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  21. Retired USN Aviator

    Ms. Coulter has really lost it. To even suggest that she is a better judge of what constitutes torture over retired Captain and former POW John McCain is shameful. I was on the fence myself concerning this bonifide AMerican hero,, but she has pushed me firmly into Senator McCain's camp.

    February 1, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  22. Minda

    While I can understand Ms. Coulter's anger against McCain, I seriously doubt that Hillary would welcome her on the campaign trail.

    Ann Coulter has a most unfortunate way of saying things that I find offensive from a human point of view. Her views are extreme to me, but more importantly I just don't approve of the way she says them.

    I do agree however that Hillary Clinton is the better candidate. John McCain is just not right for Pres. even if you are republican. I do think that Hillary Clinton is much more middle of the road than either McCain or Obama who both represent extremes on either side. I don't think Americans in the majority will back either McCain or Obama. McCain for his war forever and Obama for his war no more stance. Even though I do want our troops home from Iraq, there are real threats in this world and America has real enemies. We just have to find better ways of dealing with these threats. Still our military is a key component in any negotiation. America has important interests around the world. Barack would be too reluctant and McCain too eager to use military force.

    February 1, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  23. Greg Kaiser

    If right-wing nut jobs like Coulter and Limbaugh are anti-McCain, then even a registered Democrat such as myself should take a good look at him as a solid candidate.

    Keep in mind that Coulter and Limbaugh depend on having an "enemy" to keep their paychecks coming in, and to have material to feed their mouth-breathing followers. Think of the field day that they would have with a female president, let alone one who happens to be married to Bill Clinton! Of course Coulter would support Hillary- it means more easy money in her pocket for the next four to eight years!

    Having a veteran legislator like John McCain, who is a leader of the Republican Party and a decorated war hero, and yet has the audacity to speak out against such anti-American activities such as the use of torture, would make it so much harder for Coulter and Limbaugh to practice their hate-filled demagoguery.

    It means these conservative talking heads would actually have to start putting rational thought behind their arguments. God forbid.

    February 1, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  24. Washington, DC

    Does anyone really value Ann Coulter's thoughts or opionions? I never have and never will. She is a perfect example of people dividing the country vs. uniting the country to address and solve our problems. She doesn't deserve one minute of publicity. Why doesn't she focus her energy on helping solve our problems. On second thought, if she did that, then she would be out of a job.

    February 1, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  25. Nicole B. Virginia Beach, VA

    Will someone please tell me why anyone should be listening to people like Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh anyway? Let the PEOPLE decide who the best candidates are. Democrat, Republican, Independent or otherwise, Americans need to start thinking for themselves. For too long we've let commentators, authors, and celebrities do the decision making for us and look where it has gotten us?! Wake up America!!! For the sake of all we hold dear as Americans.....register to vote, educate yourselves, vote your conscience and try hard to ignore the rants of megalomaniacal "icons" who have nothing more than the promotion of their own professional brand(s) at heart.

    February 1, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
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