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How Could Republicans Lose Hispanic Votes They Never Had?

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: The theme that I noticed when I first got here when I started doing show prep this morning, and the same thing on the television yesterday, is the Republicans have lost the Hispanic vote because of the immigration debacle. From the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the headline: "Hispanic voters could make GOP pay for defeat of immigration legislation." And all over television today, the Democrats have had their talking heads and their political consultants and their analysts out there saying, with big smiles on their faces, "Oh, yeah, this is bad, it's over for the Republican Party. They have so angered Hispanics out there that that's it." How can we lose voters we never had? How can the Republican Party lose voters? This is a big myth, and the myth is being spread. It's designed to frighten you, but more than that, it's designed to frighten Republican elected officials so that when this comes up again -- and it will somewhere down the road -- that they do something about it, because the Democrats still don't benefit from this.

They don't have their endless parade of victims here without any check on it. So they still want to get this done. Reagan gave amnesty to nearly three million illegal aliens back in 1986. Simpson-Mazzoli. There was no political payoff, if you will, with a big movement of Hispanic votes for Republicans. The idea that letting in millions more illegals would have secured Republican majorities is literally nuts. I saw a poll over the weekend that 62% of Hispanics are going to vote for Hillary or something like that for Democrats, as though that's not new. It's been that way constantly. It's never been the case that the Republicans got the Hispanic vote. You know what? I guess what the Republicans ought to do is just embrace Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, or they'll lose the black vote. Let's do that, let's embrace Sharpton and Jackson, show the black Americans that we're on their corner and they'll vote for us, right? Right. Maybe we should just morph into Democrats. Maybe what the Republican Party should do, just either go away or become Democrats.

Ronald Reagan won two massive landslides without winning most Hispanic votes. This is not a news story. Here's the way to looks at this, though. If the country is changing in ways that elect more and more Democrats, then we need to fight that. We don't join 'em, and we don't accept their definitions of who is and who isn't going to vote for Republicans. The answer to this, folks, and this is one of the big problems with the immigration bill that came up, was assimilation. There wasn't any provision for assimilation in it. Assimilation is the answer to this. If you want the Hispanic vote, then assimilate them. Get them into the distinct American culture. The Democrats don't want assimilation. That's the point. But when people understand our traditions and our history, when they understand what makes America special, then Republicans have a shot, if they have the gumption. People flood into the country to earn a few dollars, have no real connection with our system or history, then we're doomed. If they don't try to assimilate. I don't know why this is so hard to comprehend for people in the White House and some of these pundits that are all still upset because this bill went south, because this bill was defeated.

I think the problem really is they're not interested in it because it's hard work. It involved breaking down barriers that have been built up over decades to divide us as a people. Believe me, the left has been doing this, and they continue to do it, and that's what the immigration bill was about, was dividing the country. How many of you have been reading all these horror stories, as I have, "Oh, no, oh, no, the Supreme Court, why, it's gone right wing on us, oh no, oh no." The now reactionary force under George W. Bush. This case with the school desegregation business was really a 4-4 decision with Kennedy on the fence in future cases. You got Joe Biden out there now talking about this opinion's an ominous sign of things to come. What's happened, last week everybody talked about it was a banner week, and it was, but there was no advance of conservatism last week, there was just a stoppage. We put the brakes on the advancement of more liberalism.

I'm not complaining about it, but the idea of these people out there complaining and whining and moaning about how the court's gone right wing and how the Republicans aren't going to get any Hispanic votes and so forth, it's all smoke. It's all designed to confuse and to misstate the facts of the situation. Joe Biden has this column. It's hysterical to read. It's in the Miami Herald today. I wonder how many people in this country actually believe that busing for racial reasons is a mainstream view, as he makes it sound. We're just losing rights every day, do you know that? We're losing civil rights, human rights, we're losing unconditional rights, we're losing all kinds of rights, if you listen to these people.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Sal in Ventura, California, I'm glad you called, sir. You are on the EIB Network. Hello.

CALLER: Rush.

RUSH: Yes.

CALLER: How you doing? I wanted to call and discuss your earlier comment about the Latino vote and the, uh, the, uh, assimilation not being legislated. First of all, I don't think that any immigrant group has ever been legislated into assimilation.

RUSH: I didn't say that. Wait a second. I didn't suggest that it be legislated.

CALLER: Okay.

RUSH: But there have been requirements to citizenship. There have been requirements. I'm talking about a cultural thing. I simply offered the word "assimilation" as a cure for the fact... Remember the context, now. The story in the media today is that Republicans are losing big in the Hispanic vote according to polls because of the immigration bill, and it's a bogus story because they never had a majority of the Hispanic vote in the first place to lose! So it's all much ado about nothing. But the point is, if Republicans want the Hispanic vote, the way to get it is not pander and let a bunch of people who are illegal in the country all of a sudden become legal and then have them not assimilate. If you really want Republican voters out of Hispanics, then do it the hard way: Go appeal to them!

CALLER: Exactly. Let me give you a little bit of reassurance to you and my fellow Republicans. My father came to this country in the late fifties under Bracero, the last good guest worker program that was here. There's four siblings that I'm a member of. My youngest sister was the only one born here, and unfortunately, I'm sad to see she's the black sheep of the family and the only liberal we have. My other sister was head of kidney dialysis, pediatric kidney dialysis at a major hospital in hospital. My brother is vice president of a fortune 50 company and I'm an internship here in southern California. You know, we are assimilating. I served five of years in the US Air Force.

RUSH: Wait a minute. That's great story, and I love these anecdotal stories, but you have to know that none of this that has gone on has ever been about people like you. You were not low-skilled. You were not uneducated. You were not coming to this country simply to get a cheap wage, send the money home and so forth. You came here, I can tell by your story, because you wanted to become Americans, and that's what I mean by assimilation. But there's been no pressure; there's been no incentive for it; there has been no encouraging of it. In fact we're Balkanizing, we're making it possible for them to stay segregated from the rest of American culture, because that's what the Democrats of this country want.

CALLER: But again, as your comments come through, for myself, a longtime conservative Republican, that it's still a bit at times little edgy on some of the undertones of what is said. Um, I would ask you that you remember what Ronald Reagan once said that was, "Latinos are Republicans. They just don't know it yet."

RUSH: Well, you gotta understand something else. What I am saying about this and what I have been saying is not based on race! It's not based on anything to do with that. I'm not criticizing Latinos! That's not the point of all this -- and Reagan, I'm sure, did say "Latinos are Republicans, they just don't know it yet," but that's because Reagan was willing to go out tell America's story to them. Reagan was willing to try to inspire them, and tell 'em what kind of a great country that they were coming into and what awaits them if they follow the path to citizenship and do all the things right and assimilate into American culture, which your family did. That's not happening now. The Republicans are not going out and cultivating new voters among these people the way Reagan did -- and, by the way, Reagan did not get a majority of them (We know this!) after Simpson-Mazzoli. By the way, here's another thing. Nevertheless, without the Hispanic vote, and without a majority of the black vote, he won two landslides. In 1984 he won 49 states. So there's so much wrong with this whole argument. Nobody's ripping Latinos here.

What's being criticized is that there's a distinct American culture and there's a political party here that he seems hell-bent on doing everything they can to tear it down, using illegal immigration as one of their many tools. The Republican Party, rather than having the vision of Reagan and rather than having the desires that Reagan had, and the optimism, wants to pander. They want to enter a pander contest with these illegal immigrants that are here to try to get them as voters, rather than reach out to them and tell 'em great stories that await them; the possibilities of what life in America is like. Now, they may instinctively know some of it, but they are not going to be allowed to access those opportunities if their sponsors remain Democrats and liberals, because that's not what liberals want. They want them as perpetual victims. They want them dependent. You overcame that. You illustrate that it's possible -- and, by the way, the Republicans get some Hispanic vote. I'm talking about a majority here. But the idea -- this all started today; it's all over the Drive-By Media -- that Republicans are losing something they didn't have in the first place, is ridiculous. That's what I was trying to address, talking about when it came up. I appreciate the call, Sal. I run because of the constraints of time.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: This is Inside Washington, Gordon Peterson, and during the panel discussion on the defeat of the immigration bill, Evan Thomas of Newsweek said...

THOMAS: The unfortunate reality is that Rush Limbaugh is more powerful than President Bush. Talk radio had more power in this than the power of the Oval Office.

PETERSON: Tremendous impact, you're right.

THOMAS: It just shows you where we are.

RUSH: Just shows you where we are. Ah, they're lamenting this all over the place in the Drive-By Media. I want to go back to the guy Sal who called from California, because I mentioned earlier in the program that the way to deal with this news story out there -- the Drive-Bys are pumping everybody full of this news that Republicans have just lost the Hispanic vote, "Why, it's horrible. The polls show that 62% of Hispanics plan to vote Democrat." We never had a majority of the Hispanic vote to lose in the first place. It's one of the big myths here. What's bothered me most about this is how the Republicans have sought to get these new people as voters by pandering to them, rather than going out and making the case for conservatism. That's what worked. Now, that's hard work. But they see the Democrats going full speed ahead trying to get as many of these people in the country as possible. But what happened? I simply said assimilation is the fastest way and the best way for new arrivals to learn about America. You know, over the weekend the Democrats all gathered up there in Orlando at Disney World, and Dennis Kucinich, you talking about pandering, Dennis Kucinich got up, there was an audience of Hispanic people and politicians and so forth, and Kucinich is, "I think every American child should be required to learn Spanish." Learning Spanish is not a bad thing, but that is pandering. I do not pander and I was not going to pander this guy, a nice guy from California. I'm not going to sit here and pander.

I think that's what annoys a lot of people about what I do, because I don't pander to people the way that activists in the media do. I try to appeal to Americans with American principles. Folks, we're going to have to break this mentality that we have to pander to groups based on ethnicity or race or some other identifier. That's what government does, and that's what the left does. But that's not who we are as conservatives, not what we do. Now, look at what's happened. Assimilation has become controversial. Assimilation used to be something that was expected. It used to be something that was practically required. Now assimilation is controversial, becoming a part of the distinct American culture is controversial? Well, it is. It's a sad thing. But pandering is not the way to solve any of this, and I don't do it, not going to start doing it. "But, Mr. Limbaugh, it's so nice, it makes people feel better, makes them think that you care." I'm not into being phony. If I don't care, I don't want them to think I do. And if I do care, I'm going to be legitimate and honest about why. You start pandering to people, and you're excusing their behavior. If you pander to them, you're excusing what they do and allowing it to continue and you're basically not being a good parent, if you pander to your kids and you know a lot of parents these days do that. They do it, you see it, drives you nuts. I'm just not going to do it.

END TRANSCRIPT

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