Robert Reich masterfully turns Ann Coulter’s ‘free speech’ gripes into smackdown on Trump’s media war
Economist Robert Reich suggested to Ann Coulter on Sunday that the fight to defend free speech was not limited to her campaign against the college campuses which have banned her citing security reasons.
During a discussion on ABC’s This Week about Coulter’s battle with University of California, Berkeley, host Jonathan Karl wondered whether President Donald Trump’s war on media outlets also set a dangerous precedent for free speech.
Coulter, however, preferred not to talk about the president.
“Universities ought to be places where I am not the only conservative most students will hear in four years of college,” she opined. “This whole incident shows the radical insulated left on the college campuses. And the entire left wing, including President [Barack Obama] and Bill Maher, are on the other side.”
“And what useless institutions our universities are,” she continued. “The lefties are on the side of the thugs. They’ve taken over the universities. I don’t think anyone learns anything at college anymore. It’s a four year vacation. And I think that’s what people ought to be looking at because the taxpayers are supporting these universities.”
Reich, however, redirected the conversation back to the subject of President Trump’s attack on the free press.
“The libel laws should not be widened [as Trump has suggested],” Reich explained. “We really do need a free press. One thing that concerns me about the present administration is the willingness of the administration to not only talk about widening the libel laws and also criminal laws — flag burning — but even the president of the United States, last night, using a [rally] in Harrisburg to summon his supporters and criticize the press once again.”
“This is dangerous,” Reich added. “I mean, if we believe in the First Amendment, we believe in a free and independent press.”
Watch the video below from ABC’s This Week, broadcast April 30, 2017.