If Ann Coulter had her way, young Americans, most college students, and all American women might not be able to vote.
During a debate between Coulter and MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell at George Washington University earlier this week, Coulter touted some of her extreme positions, including the disenfranchisement of young people and women.
In the midst of the back and forth between the two pundits, O’Donnell brought up a quote Coulter gave to The Guardian in 2003 in which she said that women were one group she believed should have their right to vote taken away. When pressed by O’Donnell, Coulter stood by her comments, arguing that every election since 1950, aside from the 1964 Barry Goldwater election, would have been won by Republicans had it not been for the woman vote. Using her typical logic, Coulter said this presents enough reason to disenfranchise women.
O’Donnell pushed further, asking Coulter how she would feel personally if she couldn’t vote. She responded: “If my entire gender loses it too, then I’m OK with it.”
As if this wasn’t enough to rile up the crowd of Washington, DC college students, Coulter straddled the line between boldness and absurdity once again and proposed that the voting age should be raised to 26, or “until you pay for your own health care.” That logic is based on the Affordable Care Act, which allows young Americans to remain dependent on their parents’ insurance coverage until they turn 26. She insinuated, and appears to believe, that college students are in the same boat as women and not smart enough to vote (or at least, vote how she wishes they would.)
Although this proposition, as O’Donnell pointed out, would create an awkward conflict with the Constitution, which allows those 25 and older to run for Congress, Coulter stood her ground: “I never said they couldn’t run, they just can’t vote.”
While it’s usually hard to take Coulter seriously when she makes such outlandish statements, how can College Republican groups—such as the one at George Washington University that invited her to the debate—justify their support for her when she doesn’t even believe they’re smart enough to vote?