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White House Strategy Backfires: Rush Ratings Through the Roof

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: This morning on Joe Scarborough's show on MSNBC, he was talking to their White House correspondent, Savannah Guthrie -- speaking of White House correspondent -- I've had a lot of people e-mail me: "Why didn't Obama call on any real Drive-Bys at the press conference on Tuesday? Why didn't he call on anybody from the Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post?" Why should he? He's already got 'em! He owns 'em. He wanted to focus on some other people and spread the wealth. Anyway, the White House correspondent for NBC, or MSNBC is Savannah Guthrie and Scarborough said to her, "Do they start to explain why they decided to attack Rush Limbaugh?" This is the race up there in New York 20. "When you attack Rush, you only help Rush. What do they think they're getting out of attacking Rush? Have you heard their strategy?"

GUTHRIE: I think I'm pretty familiar with the thinking here. I think that we've heard less about Rush Limbaugh recently because people here recognize that argument only goes so far. So notice the last few weeks we haven't heard too much about Rush Limbaugh.

RUSH: Savannah? I have been brought back to life in the race for the New York 20th district. But, folks, you know, I very seldom talk about this because there are ethical questions involved here. Not so much "ethical," but we in radio have always had proscriptions against discussing ratings during rating periods because it is felt that that would unfairly influence things. We're allowed to talk about results in the past, but we're not allowed to involve ourselves in ongoing ratings. And I have pretty much stayed away from the whole topic. However, I'm going to report to you some news that I got from the statistical analyst that I have from the EIB Network that analyses ratings. And I told you the other day, that Arbitron, which is the official rating company for radio, has been upgrading and modernizing the system.

They used to use diaries where people in the markets were given books and they were required to fill out what they listened to or who they listen to at what particular times in the day and then they'd have to send those things back in and they got tabulated. What they're doing now is a thing called a personal people meter or portable people meter, and it's actually a thing like a pager that you carry around with you and radio signals are encoded, and so all the participant has to do is turn the thing on. And whether he's in his or her car or at home or wherever, as long as that signal is being received over the air, the PPM will know what that person is listening to. So he doesn't have to write it down and so forth. So it's even a little more accurate than needless numbers with the boxes on the TV. It's close to approximating, but it's portable because it goes with the person who's using it.

This is within the past, what, year or so, that the PPM been use in the large markets from New York down to 15 markets I think are using it now, or ten. And we got the report yesterday for February for the markets of New York, Chicago, Houston, and Dallas. I also happen to have Los Angeles, but the statistical analyst at EIB has not broken that down. But here is what he sent. We have posted this at RushLimbaugh.com; it's up there now. Let me just read to you what he sent me, got the e-mail late yesterday afternoon. "Our read on the Arbitron PPM monthlies would give you absolute confirmation on what the audience growth has been like:

"Color commentary on NYC, Chicago, Houston and Dallas...the first four cities where the PPM data is now released. I will soon have the specific Monday, after your first address to the nation (CPAC)," which he has since gotten to me. We normally in New York have anywhere from five and a half to six and a half share. On Monday, on WABC in New York, the first Monday after the CPAC speech, we had a ten. We can now do this with the PPM. We weren't able to do this with diaries, but we can now do this. It's important to note that the numbers I'm going to give you end in February so we gotta do December, January, February here in this report. Most of these numbers came in before the White House launched its full-fledged Rahm Emanuel attack. So here is the "color commentary."

"Try [the Rush Limbaugh show] #1 [total audience] New York, Chicago and Houston" during the hours it's on. "Over the last 3 months WABC goes 4.6 to 5.9 to 6.7 to be #1 from Noon to 3pm with total audience 12 plus." The cume is up to almost 700,000, and then they give a demographic breakdown which I'll let you read on the website. I don't want to get into too many numbers here. "In the land of Obama, Rush is #1 on WLS ... going 5.2 to 6.9 to 6.9 with a cume of 396,700. ... Rush is so huge in Houston he scores in every demo...12 plus has gone 6.0 to 8.7 to 9.8 to be #1 by a Texas mile" in Houston, and in every demographic. "In Dallas the show has grown 4.8 to 5.9 to 6.4..."

Anyway, the reason I'm telling you this is Savannah Guthrie says, "They've stopped using Limbaugh; they only got so much mileage out of that, and that only goes so far." Remember, now, these ratings came in before the big hit on "I want Obama to fail." It was out there, but it wasn't until the CPAC speech that Rahm Emanuel went on Slay the Nation, and the whole Drive-Bys picked up on it; and there was the Carville-Begala-Stan Greenberg-Emanuel assault. So that's going to be March. We'll get that pretty soon. But I wanted to pass this on to you. These are important because there are 62 million people that voted against Barack Obama. The Drive-By Media tries to portray this nation as 100% united behind him, and it's not. What is happening, these audience growth rates are phenomenal. This program is, even before this -- you know, depending on the rating period...

It's been number one in New York a bunch of times, sometimes number two. The vagaries here are many, but these numbers are huge, and it indicates that we're growing. Our ranks are swelling, and the reason the ranks are swelling is precisely because people are scared and they're upset. So I wanted to share this with you, not just 'cause it's good news for me, but it's good news for all of us. It is healthy. It shows that there is an appetite and a hunger for some opposition to what is happening. Don't feel alone. Don't feel like you're isolated, 'cause you're not. There are millions of Americans with you, many of them just afraid to say so because they see what happens to people who do voice criticism. Most of the people who voice criticism don't have a microphone three hours a day to fight back. I, of course, do. 'Kin' A.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: I just happened to receive moments ago more ratings from the statistical analysis staff at the EIB Network. WJR Detroit, number one, total audience, 12 plus, with a 9.6 rating in February, and with men, 35-64. We've gone from a 6.0 to an 11.6. In Atlanta, total audience four to 5.2 to 6.2. We are fifth in total audience in Atlanta. Stations ahead of us are music. The weekly cume is huge in Atlanta, as it is in Washington. In fact, the weekly cume in Detroit is off the charts. You'd have to say this program is number one with both the employed and unemployed in Detroit. It's huge. In Washington, WMAL, third in total audience, but here it's number one men, 35-64, double the audience, 6.4 to 13.4 , and in 25-54 numbers, at all these stations, Detroit doubled.

This is before the White House attack began. Remember, I did say I want Obama to fail on January 16th. So it's all good out there. Scarborough and these people are right. These people are elevating me. By the way, the White House, they're fine with this. They are fine with my numbers going up right now. They think that the more people that hear me the more hatred for Republicans there will be because they think they have successfully identified me as leader of the Republican Party, which, of course, isn't true. This has backfired on him, and that's why they are now using Karl Rove instead of me, cause it backfired big time, and it's gonna backfire on them in New York 20, with Scott Murphy running ads and sending out leaflets and e-mail newsletters using pictures of me as though I'm his opponent. He doesn't have the guts, the character, the courage to tell anybody what the hell he stands for in this election, trying to make Democrats think that I am essentially on the ticket out there.

END TRANSCRIPT

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