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Democrat Reaction to Thumping Signals Deep Problem with Obama

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: There are a couple of themes that have evolved out there, and I'm gonna add a third to it. Pelosi has announced she's gonna run for leader of the Democrats in the House again and a bunch of people are suggesting that she should. I mean how tone deaf do you have to be to insist on keeping not just Pelosi, the same party leadership in the House, they want to keep it, the Democrats are gonna keep it. You just had a 69 seat blowout -- well, 63 seats in the House, it could reach that high, six seats in the Senate, and they want to have the same leadership back? Here's Jim Clyburn, TheHill.com: "'Underdog' Clyburn Says Dem Losses in House had 'Nothing to Do' with Pelosi -- Outgoing Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) leadership had 'nothing to do' with Democrats' losses in last week's election, the No. 3 House Democrat said Monday. Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) blamed the poorly-performing economy for the party's electoral drubbing, which saw them lose around 60 seats in the House, along with their control of the majority."

They also are saying health care had nothing to do with the loss. That's the big thing. If you've watched, if you spent any time watching the Sunday shows, you even saw this develop late last week. Mara Liasson was one of the first out of the box trying to keep her job at NPR after seeing what happened to Juan Williams out there, so she's leading the charge, Juan Williams following up. Health care had nothing to do with this. The health care bill had nothing to do with the reason the Democrats lost. I hope they continue to think that. They think it's messaging. They went back and they talked to George Lakoff (rhymes with) to get more information. They think it was lousy marketing, lousy messaging. Well, if they think health care had nothing to do with it, we got a golden opportunity here. The Republicans need to send up to the White House a repeal of the health care law en masse, in toto, every month, send it up every week and make him veto it, make the Democrats defend it. If health care had nothing to do with the reason they lost, make the Democrats defend it. It was all the economy, who's in charge of that? Make them defend all of these things. In other words, if they just had a better message, then this wouldn't have happened, because it wasn't policy.

They're out there claiming their policies, I don't care what it was, spending, debt, health care had nothing to do with their shellacking. They're gonna keep the Senate leadership, too, Dingy Harry. Now, if the House losses had nothing to do with Pelosi, what, she had no power? Health care had nothing to do with it? There's a big story in The Politico today, and you can take and analyze this in a whole bunch of different ways. Folks, I always trust my instincts. I read this Politico story today, Obama isolated ahead of 2012, and I'll give you some of the -- and they're just a story AP, Obama surprised by political cost of health care. I read this Politico story: "Obama Isolated Ahead of 2012," and the conventional wisdom analyzing this is that it's a messaging problem, and if they coulda just rearranged some of the ways they were talking about all of this then the outcome would have been different. The narrative is that health care and Obama and all had nothing to do with the election and the Tea Parties had some role in it and so forth. As I read this I'm wondering if there's a lot more going on in the White House than we know about.

Look at what's just happened here. This is the biggest drubbing since the thirties, the biggest drubbing. This is not insignificant. I think the House leadership, the Democrat leadership in the Senate, I think this narrative to keep that leadership in both houses the same is an attempt to cover up something that is far worse. I think this party knows that it is in far greater trouble in the White House and on down than they want to admit. And I think there are members of the media covering the White House who know it. I think that deep in the bowels of the Democrat Party they realize, some people realize that Obama is an utter disaster and that they're going to have to do something about it. And I think this Politico story, "Obama Isolated Ahead of 2012," is made to look like a hit piece on Obama. I don't think it's a hit piece on Obama per se. I think it is the beginning of sort of setting the table for what might happen, set the foundation for what might happen as the months ahead unfold.

Now, I don't know anything. This is just my instincts. They're running around acting like this is not that big a deal, this drubbing that they took last week, it's not really that big a deal, but it is the biggest drubbing since 1948. The thing that has, I think, become clear in their minds is that at the center of this is Obama. Michael Novak has a piece at National Review talking about how the American people made a moral statement in the election. We don't want to be European socialists. This was an utter, total rejection of an American president unlike any in American history. That's Michael Novak's take and I happen to agree with him. No president has ever been utterly rejected like this on substance, on the basis of policy. It wasn't marketing. It wasn't packaging. It wasn't a lack of proper messaging. It had everything to do with what Obama stands for. It had everything to do with the direction Obama wants to take this country.

When you have independents moving in such droves against a sitting president, the same independents who elected him, it's actually a very heartening thing to realize that a large segment of the American population is taking notes, is paying attention, is expressing at the ballot box their utter disagreement, their utter rejection of everything the Democrats stand for, and that is Obama. The Democrats making it clear here that they're going to stick with the same leadership team is an effort I believe to cover up what is really going on behind the scenes and that is a total shakeup some way to limit the damage of Obama going forward into 2012. Folks, I wish that I could tie this to something substantive that I know, 'cause there isn't anything. Common sense. This kind of drubbing is not reacted to in such a cavalier manner as they are reacting to this. You don't send the president out of the country for ten days after such a drubbing unless you want him offstage domestically.

I'm gonna get into this Politico story in greater detail as the program unfolds today, but let me just give you the opening paragraph of this thing: "President Barack Obama has performed his act of contrition. Now comes the hard part, according to Democrats around the country: reckoning with the simple fact that he's isolated himself from virtually every group that matters in American politics." Now, you could look at that paragraph and say, "Hmm, he's tone deaf, he's an elitist, he's arrogant, he's conceited, he's isolated himself," or you could look at that paragraph and say, "Something is seriously wrong."

"Congressional Democrats consider him distant and blame him for their historic defeat on Tuesday. Democratic state party leaders scoff at what they see as an inattentive and hapless political operation. Democratic lobbyists feel maligned by his holier-than-thou take on their profession. His own Cabinet -- with only a few exceptions -- has been marginalized. His relations with business leaders could hardly be worse. Obama has suggested it's a PR problem, but several Democratic officials said CEOs friendly with the president walk away feeling he's indifferent at best to their concerns. Add in his icy relations with Republicans, the media and, most important, most voters, and it's easy to understand why his own staff leaked word to POLITICO that it wants Obama to shake up his staff and change his political approach." Now, who's doing the leaking, and why? Who are the adults in this party that have finally come to Jesus and understood this is an unmitigated disaster that we have elected? It's an unmitigated disaster in the White House. Who is it leaking to the Politico, and for what ultimate purpose? Because whatever's in The Politico is not the ultimate purpose. The Politico is being used here or is complicit in being used to accomplish something here. We know that this is not just per se a hit piece on Obama to explain what happened. There's far more going on here. My antenna are sky-high.

"It should be a no-brainer for a humbled Obama to move quickly after Tuesday's thumping to try to repair these damaged relations, and indeed, in India on Sunday, he acknowledged the need for 'midcourse corrections.' But many Democrats privately say they are skeptical that Obama is self-aware enough to make the sort of dramatic changes they feel are needed -- in his relations with other Democrats or in his very approach to the job." They are skeptical that Obama is self-aware enough. Now, that doesn't mean elitist. That doesn't mean arrogant. That doesn't mean conceited. That means, is he all there, period? That means -- well, you know what it means. That means, is everything normal? My interpretation here.

I'm gonna take an obscene profit time-out here. But you sit tight, come back, and I will explain more of this. And again, I want to stress instincts, just a feeling. I've never doubted them. I've always trusted my instincts, particularly in matters political. But it just strains credulity for me to believe the Democrats think nothing's wrong here except messaging, that all they need is to go talk to George Lakoff and come up with a different way of presenting their case. They know full well why they got trounced. Now, they're not gonna admit it. They're obviously gonna come up with, "Yeah, bad marketing, bad packaging, bad messaging," but there has never been this huge a personal repudiation of a president in just two years, especially one who was messianic, he has fallen from heavenly heights.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Yeah, what I'm saying is... Look, I know this is going to sound strange to you if you base it on some of my previous comments, because on the one hand everything that's happened here is because we've had exactly what Obama has wanted to happen. He has wanted to inflict damage on the US private sector. He knows that single-payer health care is the fastest way to accomplish that. He's trying to put the private insurance business out of business. Here comes this election, this shellacking, and based on this story in the Politico (and based on the insistence that health care had nothing to do with this), my sense is that there are some Democrats who think Obama and everybody he has brought to Washington with him -- everybody who is of like mind with Obama -- is doing long-term damage to the Democrat Party. There have to be Democrats thinking that.

Now, I know we look at them and we see them as invincible, as unafraid, as not concerned that they lose this kind of power. Folks, it's not just Washington. They have lost state legislatures. They have lost governorships. The Democrat Party took a drubbing. It was a wipeout the likes of which this country has not seen, and it is owing to one man. One man made this happen, Barack Obama, and I'm suggesting to you that there are Democrats somewhere -- it may not be very many, but there are Democrats somewhere -- who know it and are asking themselves if they can survive two more years of this as a party. I know that balances weirdly with the assessment we've all made that they're about destroying, on purpose, the institutions and traditions of this country -- and I believe that the far left has co-opt the Democrat Party in many ways. But there are some adults in that party, I'm convinced, who don't want what they want so badly that they're willing to destroy their ability to have power for generations.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Folks, I'm gonna have to double-check this, but I'm pretty certain the last time that there were less than 200 Democrats in the House of Representatives was 1947 -- 1947! This is the worst drubbing since 1948. I erred when I said it was in the thirties last week. But it's not just that, it's not just less than 200 Democrats in the House since 1947. It's the governorships. It's state legislatures. You may not know this. The Republicans are making a move on West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin to switch parties. He sounded like Ronald Reagan in his campaign. There's no way Joe Manchin can vote with the Democrats the next two years and have any hope of being reelected. The Republicans are making a move in there to get him to switch parties.

Now, in addition to all the governorships and less than 200 Democrats in the House (since 1947, first time for that), there were 680 state legislative seats that switched hands. You know what this means? This means if the Republicans have the guts (and we'll have to wait and see on this), they could redistrict the Democrat Party into permanent minority status for who knows how long. Well, "permanent." Nothing's permanent in politics. There's any number of steps that Republicans could take to weaken much of the power base that has built the Democrat Party. Republicans have control of the rewriting of 195 congressional districts. One hundred and ninety-five can be rewritten now -- gerrymandered, if you will ("Jerry-mandered" if you prefer that pronunciation) for perpetual Republican elections, compared to 45 for the Democrats.

So my point here is: This is huge what happened last Tuesday, and it is a rejection of one man and his policies. Now, the Democrats are out there trying to say it had nothing to do with health care, it had nothing to do with policy, it was all messaging. That is to co-opt everybody and to fool everybody. They're also out saying, "The Tea Party cost the Republicans the Senate." The Tea Party is what gave this massive defeat to the Democrat Party. The Tea Party is what has vaulted the Republican Party to where it is. The Tea Party's responsible for 60 some odd seats in the House of Representatives. The Tea Party is responsible for victories in the Senate. Yeah, there were three that didn't go the way they wanted 'em to go, but the effort here to blame the Tea Party for this is part of the narrative and template.

This Politico story shows there is something bubbling up way below the surface and it's getting closer and closer to reaching the surface -- and if it does, I think people are gonna be shocked and stunned at what might happen. Listen to this again: "[A]nd in his icy relations with Republicans, the media, and most important most voters, and it's easy to understand why his own staff leaked word to Politico that it wants Obama to shake up his staff and change his political approach." Icy relations? Let me tell you something: His own staff leaked word to Politico that "it" wants Obama to shake up his staff? That means they're making efforts behind the scenes to get Obama to shake up his staff, and he is rejecting it, and so they're going the route of the media.

This could be -- and we'll just have to wait and see. This could be near mutinous what's happening here. "His own staff," and who is the staff? Who is running the show? Emanuel's leaving. The economic team's gone. Axelrod's leaving in the spring. Who is running this show? Well, Valerie Jarrett's still running the show and Michelle (My Belle) Obama's still running the show, and this man makes it clear he's being nagged by women whenever he goes out and makes public statements. Who is running this show? Now you've got The Politico saying that the staff is calling them, asking The Politico to publish the fact that they want him to change his political approach. "It should be a no-brainer for a humbled Obama..." That's not possible.

This is another thing to throw in the mix: It's not possible to "humble" Obama. Obama has done everything he intended to do here. See, this is the problem they've got. He doesn't look at this as brand destruction. This is... You think Jeremiah Wright cares about the Democrat Party? You think Bill Ayers cares about the Democrat Party? You think any of the people that mentored Barack Obama care about the Democratic Party except as a vehicle? You think there's any brand loyalty to the Democrat Party? I don't think there is, and there's no such thing as "a humbled Obama." I think it's another thing that bothers them. No such thing as a man capable of humility, and if you're not capable of humility, then you're not capable understanding where you're going wrong.

It's always somebody else's fault, and then paranoia sets in. "It should be a no-brainer for a humbled Obama..." Should be a no-brainer; should be, meaning anybody ought to be able to figure this out, "to move quickly after Thursday's thumping to try to repair these damaged relations, and indeed in India on Sunday he acknowledged the need for mid-course corrections." In India? "But many Democrats privately say they are skeptical that Obama is self-aware enough to make the sort of dramatic changes they feel are needed in his relations with other Democrats or in his very approach to the job." Many Democrats privately say...? Look, The Politico is famous for all these private people saying things without attribution. It's a political technique.

I'm taking all this into account in this analysis I'm engaging in here. "Many Democrats privately say they are skeptical Obama is self-aware enough to make the sort of..." Do you understand what this could mean? He's taken a giant thumping, huge, not just in Washington, in the states, throughout the country. "Democrats privately say they're skeptical that Obama's self-aware enough to make the sort of dramatic change," it hasn't dawned on Obama how big the drubbing is? If it hasn't dawned on Obama, why? Why could possibly explain that? "[S]keptical Obama is self-aware enough to make the sort of dramatic changes they feel are needed in his relations with other Democrats or in his very approach to the job."

They question his self-awareness to the point they ask: Is he capable of doing the job? Folks, this is not lightly thrown out there by the Politico. The Politico is clearly State-Controlled Media, clearly sympathetic. You throw a paragraph like that out there? You got somebody detached, not even aware what happened, not capable of doing the job. Folks, put that in context with this giant, huge drubbing on Tuesday -- which I think they were shocked at. I don't think the Democrats had any idea it was gonna be this bad. They live in denial. But now, now... (interruption) No, they didn't think it was gonna be this bad, Snerdley. They knew they were gonna lose some seats. They didn't think it was gonna extend down to dogcatcher, which it has.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: There's a companion story here, and I want you to grab audio sound bite number nine. AP: "Obama Surprised by Political Cost of Health Law." Now, let's go back here. Many Democrats privately say they are skeptical that Obama is self-aware enough. Folks, you're telling this to the Politico. This is the kind of thing they would say about Newt Gingrich. It's the kind of thing they would say about George Bush. He's off his rocker; he's lost his marbles; that he's gone nutcase; that he's drinking again in the White House. There were all those stories out there that Bush had lost it, he's back on medicine for anxiety and all that kind of stuff. That's the kind of stuff they always say about Republicans. You don't see this about Democrats. "Many Democrats privately say they are skeptical that Obama is self-aware enough to make the sort of dramatic changes they feel are needed ... or in his very approach to the job." Self-aware enough to do the job? And then this next headline: "Obama Surprised by Political Cost of Health Law." What are they setting up here? Are they setting up somebody totally out of touch, clueless, doesn't know what's going on out there? And he's helping. Last night, 60 minutes, Steve Kroft. You know how they promo'd this? "Obama's First Postelection Interview." Big whoop. It's about his one millionth interview. What's the big deal about it being his first postelection interview? Anyway, here's Kroft. "Are there things that you wish you could do over?"

OBAMA: There are some that argued, well, you should just stop and let people digest all these changes and so you shouldn't take on something as big as health care. It's a huge, big, complicated system. I made the decision to go ahead and do it. And it proved as costly politically as we expected, probably actually a little more costly than we expected politically.

RUSH: From that we get an AP headline: "Obama Surprised by Political Cost of Health Law." I don't believe that for a second. I know that Obama intended to do exactly what he did. He intended to do everything that he has done, and yet two separate stories. We're getting a picture of somebody clueless, outta touch, and in The Politico not self-aware enough to even do the gig. And now, he's out there saying, "I had no idea it was gonna be this costly politically." BS. You knew damn well it was gonna cost this much politically. He doesn't care what happened to the Democrat Party. This is what I've been trying to tell everybody for as long as he's been president. He doesn't care. He told the Blue Dogs, he sent Clinton out to confirm it, "You vote for this health care bill or you don't have a chance of being reelected." They said, "Well, wait a minute, what happened to Democrats in '94? " Obama said the difference is this time you've got me. Well, look where that got 'em. The difference is this time you've got me. Yeah. This time you got Obama, and you lost 60 seats. You have less than 200 members in the House since 1947, you've lost state legislatures, you've lost the governorship, the Republicans can redistrict Democrats out of power for who knows how long, and if they've got the guts they can disempower some unions with right to work laws, if they've got the guts to. And the Blue Dogs are now saying, "You know what? We're gonna stick with the same leadership in the House and the same leadership in the Senate."

Folks, I wasn't born on a turnip truck, and I didn't fall off of one. But even if I had been born on a turnip truck and even if I had fallen off a turnip truck, you're not gonna make me think this is just standard old politics-as-usual after a political defeat. "In his effort to change Washington, Obama has failed to engage Washington and its institutions and customs." I told you. He doesn't care what he leaves in his wake as he sets out to reform, transform America. He doesn't care about the wreckage. "In his effort to change Washington, Obama has failed to engage Washington and its institutions and customs, leaving him estranged from the capital's permanent power structure --" Well, we've spoken of that on this program, the elite ruling class. They are liberal Democrat. They run that town politically. They run it business-wise, they run it socially, and he has failed to engage them. He is estranged from them? Right here it says so in The Politico. "-- right at the moment when Democrats say he must rethink his strategy for cultivating and nurturing relations with key constituencies ahead of 2012."

So, Obama's not Washington enough? Hell, he's not American enough. That's what they're saying here. He's not Washington enough? Because to these guys, Washington's America. San Francisco's not America. St. Louis is not America. Kansas City is not America. Washington is America. To the people that run that town, to the people that run that show. Here's a Democrat official -- as usual in The Politico, unnamed -- Democrat official who deals frequently with the White House. Quote: "This guy swept to power on a wave of adulation, and he learned the wrong lessons from that. He's more of a movement leader than a politician." He's more of a movement leader than a politician. Meaning, he's above all of this. In his own mind, he's not of the soil. He's messianic. He's a movement leader. He doesn't care about our party. He's a community organizer. He's a movement leader. He won't come down to our level. This guy's final comment was, I'm just quoting him, now. Hide the women and children, folks. Three, two, one, hide the women and children. Final quote, this political advisor, unnamed: "He needs someone to kick his ass on things large and small and teach him to be a politician." Now, is Politico part of Reverse Operation Chaos? I ask you, folks, I ask you.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Boy, how times change, folks. I mean just a few weeks ago it was Obama looking around for asses to kick, and now it's his ass being kicked by unnamed Democrats in The Politico. Somebody needs to tell whoever leaked this all to the Politico that Obama's 9,000 miles away in India. If you want to make a change now's the perfect time. He's 9,000 miles away. If you think the adults need to step up here, this is the perfect time to do it. Change the lock on the Oval Office or worse.

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