ormer MTV veejay and television talk show host Kennedy has always
said she's a philosophical libertarian and a registered Republican.
She even has a pink Republican elephant tattooed on her upper left
thigh. But Kennedy's allegiance to the GOP may be fading somewhat,
if her comments on MSNBC's Scarborough Country (November
17, 2004) are any indication.
In a discussion about the Federal Communication Commission's crackdown
on "indecent" speech on radio and TV, Kennedy accused Republicans
of restricting free speech and favoring "a moral dictatorship
in this country." Specifically, she said she opposed the FCC's
campaign against racy radio hosts like Howard Stern.
"You know what?" she said to several conservative panelists
on the show. "You guys, you have become the humor police. And
you're using the liberalization of governmental controls in broadcasting
the way that liberals do with the war on terror and guns. And any
other time the Left wants to squash liberties, you know, conservatives,
they start barking up the tree of freedom. But all of a sudden, you
know, you're doing the exact same thing. And it's very hypocritical.
What happened to the libertarian bent in the Republican Party?"
No one has ever questioned Kennedy's libertarian bent; she talks openly
and frequently about it. On ABC's Politically Incorrect (April
14, 2000), she said, "I'm a registered Republican; I'm an ideological
libertarian." In TV Guide (April 12, 2003), she said,
"I consider myself a Republitarian. A little bit Republican and
a little bit Libertarian." And in Portland, Oregon's Willamette
Weekly (November 10, 2004), she said although she's known as
a conservative, she's actually more of a "small 'l' libertarian."
On most issues, Kennedy certainly sounds like a libertarian. According
to Metropolitan Living magazine (September 1999), she "hates
drugs but doesn't think they should be illegal, likes the Second Amendment
but doesn't own a gun. She's big on personal freedoms that people
take for granted." Kennedy also spoke out against high taxes
on Scarborough Country. "I mean, I live in Seattle,
where what we have to show for [our taxes] is a brand new $500 million
baseball stadium. And, you know, potholes." She told the Penn
State University Collegian (April 9, 1996) that her political
beliefs are "somewhere between P.J. O'Rourke and Ayn Rand."
Kennedy (born Lisa Kennedy Montgomery) is perhaps best known for her
four-year stint as host of MTV's Alternative Nation (1992-1996).
Wearing her trademark funky horn-rimmed glasses, she introduced videos
and interviewed a who's-who of actors and musicians, including Tom
Cruise, Nine Inch Nails, Jodie Foster, the Red Hot Chili Peppers,
Bill Murray, and others. Not everyone appreciated her quirky humor,
offbeat fashion choices, and what one magazine called her "anti-glamour
earthiness." In fact, Rolling Stone readers once voted
her the music channel's "Most Hated" veejay.
After MTV, Kennedy went on to host the special Who Wants to Be
Governor of California? and the show Friend or Foe?
on the Game Show Network. She was a speaker at the 1996 Republican
National Convention and a correspondent for CBS Sports at the 1998
Winter Olympic Games in Nagano, Japan, covering snowboarding. In 1999,
she got her own radio show on KQBZ-FM in Seattle, Washington. That
same year, she published a book, Hey Ladies: Tales and Tips for
Curious Girls (Random House), which offered advice for teenage
In 2004, she joined VH1's pop culture show, The Best Week Ever,
as a panelist -- a gig which Willamette Week said "gives
her a chance to rehash the older, more boisterous Kennedy."
Kennedy also continues to be boisterous about her opposition to what
Metropolitan Living called "overzealous, socially conservative
Christian citizens who give the Republicans a bad name" and who
use the Bible to justify their brand of conservative politics. "That
ain't what Jesus is all about," Kennedy said. "He'd have
a big ol' sit down with a lot of these overly judgmental Christians
and say, 'This is not what it's all about. You're [urinating] in the
Jesus pool and I'd appreciate it if you'd get out. Thank you.' "