RUSH: To Austintown, Ohio, this is Laura, and it's great to have you here.
CALLER: Thanks, Rush. It's great to talk to you. I'm calmed down a little bit. I called Lindsey Graham's office about 45 minutes ago, and got into a heated debate with an office worker. I said, "You know, I was not a supporter of John McCain. I put my checkbook away." I said, "The House Republicans are doing something that is inspiring conservatives. I got out my checkbook to write again, and you just shut me down. You're sabotaging McCain's candidacy and the presidency and you're handing it to Obama." He said, "We need to get something done expediently or we are going to lose the House and Obama's going to have a 60-seat, veto-proof majority." I said, "Republicans are tired of you compromising with the Democrats. If we wanted a Democrat plan, we would vote for them. We want to drill on American soil. Conservatives are excited about this. You would have so much money flowing in, if you would fight for our ideals." And he told me, "Well, what exactly is the plan that you're against?" I said, "You're going to be raising more taxes. You're going to be giving in to environmental concerns, their agenda more so," and he said, "Well, maybe you ought to read it before you just listen to Rush Limbaugh. What's he telling you?" He said, "I've been taking angry calls for the past two hours over this. Maybe you ought to think for yourself." I said, "Well, Rush Limbaugh doesn't speak for us, but he is the voice of those of us who get ignored by Washington senators like Lindsey Graham." So...
RUSH: Wow! Proud of you! You ladled it on.
CALLER: Yeah, I was quite upset, because for somebody to tell me that I don't have a mind of my own when I think conservatives have the greatest minds to think.
RUSH: All right. Now, I want to go back over something that you said the person in Lindsey Grahamnesty's office said to you. This person said to you, "We've got to do something, we have to show compromise, because we've got to keep the Democrats from getting 60 seats in the Senate."
CALLER: Yeah. He said they are going to have a veto-proof majority in the Congress.
RUSH: Right. Okay, so what that means is, in the office of Lindsey Grahamnesty, the calculation has been made that in order for more Republicans to get elected, they have to show the "willingness to compromise" with Democrats on an issue where the American people overwhelmingly oppose the Democrat stance! Also, Lindsey Graham -- none of these guys faces a serious reelection challenge. It's not as though they have to go out and show bipartisanship in order to win reelection. That's even worse than what they did. By the way, did you tell this babe -- was this a guy or a woman you were talking to in there?
CALLER: A guy.
RUSH: Did you tell him that this story is all over the Wall Street Journal?
CALLER: Well, no, I didn't hear that part. I've been in and out of the car all day.
RUSH: Well, that's where I got the information. Kimberley Strassel has written a column about it. We double-checked it. There's an energy think tank that's really good that has even bullet-pointed the problems of this bill even more. I'll get the name of that to you in a second, in the next break. But it's all over the place. So what they're mad at is that what they did got out. It just happened last Friday, a week ago, Laura, but people just found out about it yesterday.
CALLER: Well, my point to him was, "You are trying to save your congressional seats but you're going to in turn lose the presidency." I said, "So you are sabotaging McCain's campaign at this point, because if you don't have conservatives behind him, it's not going to matter you winning all the seats in Congress."
RUSH: Well, that's a good point. I don't know whether they look at it that way but they are sabotaging McCain's campaign because McCain finally -- finally! -- had come around on energy. He had finally come around, except in ANWR, but then these guys come and do this, and it did take the wind out of McCain's sails for a while. But it's just a deal among ten senators now. It hasn't gone to the full Senate, but with these five Republicans caving it's only going to take four more.
CALLER: Well, I think they're getting the wind knocked out of their sails because I don't think they expected the amount of calls. It was tough getting through.
RUSH: How could they not? You know, that's another thing, Laura. How could they be so tone deaf? How can they not understand that essentially agreeing with the Democrat position on this -- no drilling, tax increases on oil companies, money spent on "renewables" and "alternatives" -- that a hell storm would erupt?
CALLER: I don't think they care. To be honest, I think they're so beyond -- all these senators that have been there forever almost beyond -- help because they have sabotaged themselves anymore. If they don't see that this has gotten conservatives excited and they're starting to write taxes since they've been hurting for money, I don't understand how they could pull the rug out from under us and say, "Well, we need to do something expediently." It just doesn't even make sense, so I don't think they listen to us in Washington.
RUSH: Well, the way I hear that is it sounds like they think that in order for them to win elections for Republicans to be reelected, they gotta show a willingness to work with Democrats. Of course, their role model for that is McCain. So in one sense, it's understandable, but it isn't understandable in the sense that it undercuts the position of their party's presidential nominee, as you have pointed out. Well, I appreciate the feedback on that call, Laura. Thanks for taking the time to call.
RUSH: Dalton Georgia, this is Neil. You are on the EIB Network. Hello, sir.
CALLER: How you doing, Rush?
RUSH: Excellent to outstanding, sir.
CALLER: Good deal. Listen, the first time I heard about these five Republicans trying to cut this outrageous energy deal with these Democrats, I heard from you this morning. And when I heard it, it just outraged me, and I got on the phone to both Isakson and Chambliss's office and I told them, "What's wrong with these guys? Have they lost their minds?" I said, "Do they not understand that people in this state and in our country want us to drill for our own oil?" And I said, "I don't consider it nothing less than a stab in the back." And I said they better back away from this. The thing about it is, Rush, I voted for these guys, and I'm ashamed I voted for them now. I thought Chambliss was a pretty good Senator 'cause he always seemed to come down on the correct side of the issues. But now he just seems like he's just turning out to be another typical politician.
RUSH: Well, it appears so on this issue. Look, I didn't even know anything about this, either. This is one of these things that happened very quietly. I didn't know about this 'til I read Kimberley Strassel's piece in the Wall Street Journal this morning, and then had it confirmed and backed up on an energy activist website. I forgot to get that during the break, but I will get it. I'm having a mental block as to the name of it, but we'll link to it at RushLimbaugh.com. Like you, I was just stunned. It's worse than stupid. It's so stupid there has to be some other reason for this.
CALLER: Well, I don't know what's wrong, you know. I've been listening to you for about three years, and I've become so much more informed about what's going on in this country and the government and such, but, you know, here I am out here busting my hump just to put gas in my car, which is almost four bucks a gallon here, and, you know, here these guys are up in Washington, you know, that I voted for, and, you know, it seems like all they care about is, you know, of course their jobs.
RUSH: Well, what did they say? What did their representatives say when you talked to them?
CALLER: Well, Isakson's office was fairly cordial, but Chambliss's office -- and it took me awhile to get through both of them because their lines were busy -- but Chambliss's office, the lady that come on, she had a real bad attitude, she said, "Well, we've already gotten a bunch of calls about this," and I said, "Now you got one more." I said, "You better tell the senator, he better get his head out of his butt and he better back away from this, 'cause he's going to lose a lot of votes and, you know, he's going to have to pack his bags and find another line of work next time he comes up for election," and if I hear any more about it, me personally, and I have a large family and a lot of friends, and they all vote Republican, and they all voted for Chambliss, if he doesn't back away from this, none of them is going to vote for him. And if he is so stupid to do something like this, and that's another thing, you know, the more I listen about it, the more that it just floors me, how could anybody not want to go in our own country and get our own oil out when we have got so much? And talking about all this environmental green stuff and alternative energy, yeah, I'm sure some of that stuff will do some good but, you know, I'm totally in line with you, oil is going to be here, everybody might as well face it. And here we have, we've got a bucket load or tons of bucket loads right underneath our feet, and people like Obama and these other just stupid Democrats, they don't even want to get it. I don't understand it, Rush.
RUSH: Because they don't control it, because they don't control the oil. If they could nationalize the oil companies they'd be all for it, if they participated in it, but they don't control it. That's just one of the reasons. It's irrational, but you're right, they hate it. But this country, of the western democracies, the advanced industrialized western democracies, this country is the cleanest in the world. My point is, this oil, wherever it is, offshore, underground, is not polluting us. It's organic. It is a commodity, and Democrats hate it. It's like hating sugar. It's like hating cotton. It doesn't make any sense. And you take oil out of the economic equation, and we're back to the 1850s.
CALLER: Well, oil -- you know, I totally agree. Oil is a natural product of the earth as plants and soil are.
RUSH: Of course it is. That's what I mean, it's organic. Ethanol is the artificial thing here.
CALLER: Well, I'll tell you what, Rush, I don't know, is it even possible to elect anybody anymore that actually goes to Washington and stands up for the people and not get caught up in all the perks on their job and turn into a typical politician? Because I'm beginning to wonder. Because even the ones that you think are fairly decent and good, once they get up there, they turn out to be just like everybody else.
RUSH: Yeah, there's something about that town that does conservatives in. But, look, Neil, let me explain something to you, and people are going to think this is a lousy excuse for these guys, but look at who the Republican presidential nominee is.
RUSH: John McCain. What does he even say is his strong suit? Working with Democrats. It got him laudatory media time. He was fawned over and loved for a while by the Washington press corps, by the Washington social circuit, and now he's ended up as the party nominee. Well, now, just in the sense that everybody's a copycat and politics is a copycat game, and you got Lindsey Graham, you know, hanging around with McCain all these years, it could well be that these guys are simply following the leader, hoping that it will advance their careers as it advanced McCain's. This is one of the problems that this whole nomination presents us.
RUSH: As I was talking to the guy from Dalton, Georgia, about his phone calls to Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson, it struck me that it was two hours ago that I discussed what this is all about. If you just tuned in and you don't know what is he upset about, let me give you the highlights. Again, this is from Kimberley Strassel in the Wall Street Journal today in a column entitled, "The Republican Energy Fumble." Essentially there is a Gang of Ten senators, five Republicans led by Lindsey Graham, John Thune, Saxby Chambliss, Bob Corker (Tennessee), and Johnny Isaakson. They joined five Democrats to craft an energy bill in the Senate that is exactly what Barack Obama wants. It is an utter disaster.
It's a Democrat giveaway. New production on offshore federal lands is left to state legislatures only in four coastal states. The regulatory hurdles are huge. They have expanded. They are higher. PETA has a role. The ACLU has a role. The bill bars drilling within 50 miles of the United States coastline. That puts off limits some of the most productive areas -- even if the states allow it -- including in ANWR. Well, you can only drill in four states anyway under this bill, but no -- you can't drill any closer to 50 miles of the coastline even in these four states, which puts ANWR off limits and most of the really rich areas. Also the bill contains "$84 billion in tax credits, subsidies, and federal handouts for alternative fuels and renewables."
This bill would lead to no drilling at all, anywhere at any time. It would lead to increased taxes on the oil companies. As Kimberley Strassel writes, "The Sierra Club could not have written this better. So the Republican Five has potentially given anti-drilling Democrats the political cover they need to neutralize energy through November," when this was a winning issue for any Republican! McCain finally had an issue he was winning. He was embarrassing Obama with, this whole inflate your tires business. The vast majority of the American people want to drill. People in California, a majority, want to drill. Majority in Florida, want to drill. Now, this is a compromise between these ten senators. You have to get the Gang of Ten concept now.
You have to understand what this is. The way things line up now, Harry Reid, the Democrats, need 60 votes in order to get anything passed in the Senate. It's just the way the Senate works now. They don't have anywhere near 60 senators. They need nine Republicans to join them. If every Democrat agrees on any legislation, they need nine Republicans to join them. Well, five have here. Because the bill was a stalemate, and the reason the bill's at a stalemate because the Republicans, Mitch McConnell, didn't want any part of it. So these guys decided, "It doesn't look good for us to be in a stalemate. The American people want something done. The American people want efficient, comprehensive reform. They want something done!"
Yeah? They don't want "something" done. They want drilling! They want energy independence. They want increased supply. Now, the House Republicans, they're still churning away over there, folks. They're still trying to embarrass Pelosi. They're still playing that great hand that the Republicans have been dealt here. This is five senators from the Republican Party, and what they have basically done now is seen to it that all Harry Reid needs to is go out and find four more Republicans to join in this -- and these Republicans, by the way, these five are conservatives. Well, compared to Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, they are conservatives. Compared to Gordon Smith in Oregon, they are conservatives. Compared to Chuck Hagel, they're conservatives.
So, you see, it's quite likely that there's four renegade Republicans that could join this. If this happens, all it means is, there won't be any legislation. It doesn't mean this bill is going to pass. It just means there won't be any action taken on drilling, which is exactly what Obama wants, which is what the Democrats want, and it effectively cuts the rug from underneath the Republican campaign. As such, it's inexplicable, unless you follow the money, and who knows where that trail leads in this case. But almost always following the money will give you the answer to most questions, particularly in politics. But then again, being honest and up front, you gotta say that these five Republicans are simply following the lead of the party nominee.
That was his success track. That's how he got where he is. They probably saying, "Hey, what's wrong with it?" Lindsey Graham, hey, he survived his primary fight after the immigration debacle. He's figuring he's bulletproof; nothing going to hurt him. He can take whatever position he wants now. None of these five senators face a serious reelection challenge. So we led this off two hours ago with the program, and if you've just tuned in late or in the last hour, then you might have known what was driving all of this. Now, the Institute for Energy Research has released an analysis of this. It's called the New Era energy plan. That's what the Gang of Ten bill is. It's called the New Era energy plan proposed by the self-titled Gang of Ten US senators. "Publicly available details on the plan are limited to press releases and brief summaries, which form the basis of IER's analysis. The Institute's resident economist, Robert Murphy, issued the following statement:
"'Faced with the prospect of having the ban on offshore energy production expire at the end of September if Congress does nothing, this headline-hungry gang decided it had to do something before leaving town for the August vacation,' Murphy said. 'The New Era plan is the same as the era we find ourselves stuck in today – flush in subsidies, tax credits, and various other government handouts, but short on the energy supplies our economy and our consumers need to prosper. American families would be better served if the Gang and the entire Congress simply stopped trying to help, stepped aside, and let the offshore ban expire.'" See, that, my friends, is the real nub here, because the ban on offshore energy production expires at the end of September. If they do nothing, it just goes away. So what they've effectively tried to do here is reinstitute the ban, which is exactly what the Democrats want. Five Republican senators are giving the Democrats what they want.