Of the small number of conversations I had with conservative media activist Andrew Breitbart that weren't about baseball or the LA Times, the one that has stood out to me occurred while we were standing in the Yamashiro dining room overlooking Hollywood. The monthly gathering of media and political types was winding down for the night, and Andrew was cackling that he was going to go out and have a big steak — cackling at this completely shrug-worthy fact because he was certain his consumption of prime meat would somehow annoy "the left."
That told me most of what I ever needed to know about Breitbart's flavor of activism and parallax view of "the left." His recent success as a culture war provocateur and web mogul made him a niche star among some conservatives. Some lefty true believers loathed his tactics and his occasional clean hits, and some proved their smallness by reveling in his death in website comments. But I suspect the first and only emotion most Americans on the left spilled in Andrew's direction was sadness if they happened to hear that he died young on a sidewalk and left behind four children. Since that day, some of the believers on his side who believe with their ideology bones over their brains have whispered among themselves that Andrew must have been killed — must have been — because Obama or some of his operatives (but Obama is their chosen evil-doer in chief this political era) feared Breitbart so much he had to be eliminated.
The news late last week from the coroner must have hit them hard, kind of like the dissonance felt by the followers of that old clergyman who keeps proclaiming — and surviving — the end of the world. From Breitbart's own Big Hollywood website:
The office of the Los Angeles County coroner has completed its investigation into the death of Andrew Breitbart on March 1, and has confirmed that he died of natural causes, namely heart failure.
Chief Coroner Investigator Craig Harvey told Breitbart News that the final autopsy report would be released next week.
A press release issued by the Department of Coroner (below) notes: "No prescription or illicit drugs were detected. The blood alcohol was .04%," a negligible amount.
The press release concludes: "No significant trauma was present and foul play is not suspected."
Andrew Breitbart died March 1 of heart disease and hardening of the arteries, at the age of 43.