James Carville was going to debate Ann Coulter Saturday afternoon when a pro wrestling match broke out.
The Bill Clinton confidant and liberal pundit abandoned all subtlety and went right at Donald Trump, spewing Cajun venom at the Republican nominee even as the boos cascaded down on him from every corner of the giant tent.
If Hillary Clinton fans were in the crowd, they were mostly silent. Perhaps wisely.
“He’s a whangin’, complainin’ candidate and he’s goin’ down the tubes,” Carville sputtered, his shiny dome glistening in the enclosed humidity. “You’ve got a clown and an ignoramus for a candidate. He’s old, he’s tired, he’s overweight, and she’s clockin’ him.”
Boos and more boos.
Give that man a leotard.
Coulter was no less confrontational, skewering Hillary Clinton, husband Bill and Democrats in general with all the grace of an assassin. Was she concerned about the Donald Trump Tape — lewd remarks recovered from a live mic captured 11 years ago and revealed to the world Friday?
Not so much.
Bill Clinton was a “forcible rapist,” she said. “Donald Trump’s potty mouth vs. an actual rapist?”
You decide which is worse, she said.
She reached back even farther, though, reminding the crowd about Ted Kennedy and the tragedy of Chappaquiddick. “Eleven years later he was running for president as the conscience of the Democratic Party,” she said.
You want sleaze? We can point to sleaze, too, she seemed to be saying.
Carville’s favorite topic was Trump’s character, but he did invoke at least one policy issue that ought to interest Bakersfield: trade agreements, past and potentially future. Trump has said he would address the nation’s trade imbalance with tariffs.
“If you think agriculture is ready for a trade war, go for it (and vote for Trump),” he said. “If you think this valley is ready for a trade war, go for it.”