Author Ann Coulter sparred with Joy Behar on Reaganomics on Wednesday's episode of The View. "How are you going to solve it if you don't have any revenue coming in?" asked Joy Behar of the conservative commentator, who is currently promoting her latest book, Demonic. "When Reagan cut taxes, each year, as the taxes went down, revenue to the treasury went up" Coulter responded.
As The View's most ardent leftist, Behar went on to try to blame bad loans and the housing crisis on Republicans. Coulter merely rebutted with the facts. "You cannot blame the Republicans on that" said Coulter. "The big banks then bundled them to the mortgage-backed securities, they got spread out into everyone's portfolio. So it was like a poison in the economy."
(video after the break)
Coulter also deflected blows delivered by Whoopi Goldberg, who trolled out the classic trope of the Clinton surpluses being annihilated by the Bush tax cuts. "Where did that money go? What happens? What's happening?" the comedian asked. "Social security, Medicare, Medicaid, paying congressional salaries" Coulter shot back.
The View's audience was audibly irritated by Coulter's suggestion that entitlements were part of the problem. "I'd even go beyond blaming the politicians. I mean, it is the people. It's very hard to take their treats away. Once you start giving them the treats to tell them we're going to take them away is very hard." Elisabeth Hasselbeck, who did not intervene in this discussion, tried to maneuver the conversation in the direction of Coulter's new book, but was cut off by Behar, who apparently took offense at Coulter's characterization of government entitlements. "A lot of is it is not treats. A lot of it is necessities, let's not get on that track. It's not treats for some people, Ann." Coulter rebutted by pointing out one of the most obvious flaws with the entitlement system. "Ok, but how about treats being Social Security going to Donald Trump, because that's the way the system is set up right now?
Wednesday's encounter on The View provides more evidence, if any were needed, that intelligent commentary is best left to those who have some idea of what they are talking about. Suffice it to say that the population of ABC's morning gaggle of giggles does not meet this apparently insurmountably high bar.
A transcript of the exchange, which aired at 11:26 am on the June 8 edition of The View, follows below:
JOY BEHAR: I want to know what you think a Republican would do that the Democrats can't do?
ANN COULTER: Well, I don't want to sound too wonky, but it would be-. Peter Ferrara keeps writing about -
BEHAR: Who is he?
COULTER: -he's just a brilliant writer, economist, I think he's with CATO. And he keeps writing: "okay, this is what Reagan did to turn the Carter economy around, you know, cut regulation, cut taxes, this, that." He says Obama looks like he studied what Reagan did and did exactly the opposite, and when I came on your show when you were sitting in for Larry King it was about a month into the Obama administration and I believe I was pessimistic about him turning the economy around because he's doing all of the things, micro managing from the top, big government, raise taxes.
BEHAR: But he hasn't been able to raise the taxes, the taxes are still in place.
COULTER: The debt's going up. Taxes are going to have to go up at some point.
BEHAR: You heard that, you heard that. That's a Republican saying that.
COULTER: Well, because the debt's going up because you're spending.
BEHAR: Well how are you going to solve it if you don't have any revenue coming in? You've got to do something.
COULTER: Well what- well what this is, and this is counterintuitive, but you must trust me on this, it's in every Thomas Sowell book ever written. When Reagan cut taxes, each year, as the taxes went down, revenue to the treasury went up. When people say, which is disingenuous and sort of a sleight of hand, is, "yes, but the deficit grew." That's because for each additional dollar he brought in, congress would spend three more dollars. I mean, you can't overcome that, but more revenue came into the treasury the more you cut because people-
WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Then how do you explain what happened once Bush got in? Because we had money when, when Clinton left. So what has happened? I know you have,I know you have an idea.
COULTER: It was, and this is so going to drive your viewers away, but I mean we know
GOLDBERG: Believe me. You can't drive them away. A lot of stuff will drive them away, but not you. Trust us.
COULTER: We do know it came from - thank you - we do know it came from the housing market crash, and you had the government - Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD, pushing these politically correct, suicidal loans, they were allowing unemployment benefits to be used as collateral for mortgages. Then you have the big banks.
BEHAR: And who allowed that?
COULTER No no no, oh, no. You cannot blame the Republicans on that. Just let me finish the train before you get to that. The big banks -
BEHAR: You can't?.
COULTER: - the big banks then bundled them to the mortgage-backed securities, they got spread out into everyone's portfolio. So it was like a poison in the economy.
GOLDBERG: Not that. What happened to the money that Clinton left in the-? That's what I'm asking. What happened to the money that Clinton left -
BEHAR: A war was started.
GOLDBERG: - Oh god child. Clinton left when he left office? Where did that money go? What happens? What's happening?
COULTER: Social security, Medicare, Medicaid, paying congressional salaries.
GOLDBERG: So are we not all guilty, then?
GOLDBERG: Isn't it both parties that have -
BEHAR: Screwed up.
GOLDBERG: - messed this up? Messed this up? It's not just one. So shouldn't we try to figure out how to fix it together?
COULTER: Yes. And Not only that, I'd even go beyond blaming the politicians. I mean, it is the people. It's very hard to take their treats away. Once you start giving them the treats, -
GOLDBERG: That's right.
COULTER: - to tell them we're going to take them away is very hard.
GOLDBERG: That's absolutely right. So it's all of us.
BEHAR: A lot of is it is not treats. A lot of it is necessities, let's not get on that track. It's not treats for some people, Ann. Some people need the money. I would not have survived. When I - when I got fired from my job from Good Morning America, I was a single, divorced mother. If I didn't have unemployment insurance, I would [censored].
COULTER: Ok. But how about treats being Social Security going to Donald Trump, because that's the way the system is set up right now?
BEHAR: Well, fix that part.