Does Coulter hurt GOP?

The response of the National Jewish Democratic Council to the latest Ann Coulter controversy is a campaign calling on news networks to stop inviting her on their shows.

The NJDC may want to rethink that strategy, judging from this article by Richard Baehr, political director of American Thinker and a leader of the Republican Jewish Coalition.

His basic point: Her TV rants may help sell books, but hurt the conservative cause at the same time. …

In my opinion, Coulter has never been a big help to the effort to build a conservative and Republican majority. Her most recent comments on the relationship of Christianity to Judaism, made on the CNBC show “The Big Idea” with Donnie Deutsch on Monday of this week, may prove particularly damaging.

I say this in part based on the number of emails I have received today from Jews, many of whom I have been working with for years to consider switching to the GOP, given President Bush’s very strong record of support for Israel, and the much stronger commitment to national security on the GOP side of the aisle. …

At a time when party affiliation is fraying and a third of Americans consider themselves independent, to build a majority of 50% plus one requires persuasion. Independents will not accept all parts of either party’s platform or approach but will choose a candidate for office based on which issues matter to them, and whether one or the other party connects with them on those issues. It is a skill to disagree at times without being disagreeable. Ronald Reagan had it, and it is one of the reasons he became so popular and patched together a large winning coalition. Coulter has decided there is no economic advantage for her in this approach.

It is clear that not only Jews may be repelled by Coulter’s most recent comments. …

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