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Will Newt Mop Floor with Bam in Debates?


RUSH: Larry in Ithaca, Michigan, great to have you on the EIB Network. Hello, sir.

CALLER: Hello, Rush. What an honor to speak with you.

RUSH: Thank you very much, sir. I understand that.

CALLER: I jump on the Internet every day at 12:06 and shut her down at three o'clock, but I don't have a question, I just got a comment. I told Mr. Snerdley I'm a Newt Gingrich fan.

RUSH: Yeah.

CALLER: He's charismatic and he'll mop up the floor with Mr. Obama when it comes to debatin'. I also told Mr. Snerdley that Herman Cain was my favorite. He got railroaded. There's no proof whatsoever ever been issued to support the claim.

RUSH: Yeah, but, you know, that's an interesting thing. People are asking, "How come it did Herman Cain in what we don't even know it happened, and yet we know it happened with Newt and he seems to be driving." The answer is, there's nothing new about Newt. All this stuff's known. It's been dealt with. The public hasn't been surprised by any revelations about Newt. With Herman Cain, none that was known, and there was so much of it that came -- that onslaught -- that it created some doubts. But even now we don't know if it happened. But with Newt we know that it did, but it doesn't matter because it was all known. (interruption)

That's right, where are the Cain women, exactly? Where are they, where is Gloria Allred? Where is their testimony? Where is the specific detail of what he did? It isn't anywhere. Mission accomplished. They don't have to go public with it. Bit there's something here that Larry said: Gingrich will mop Newt up in the debates. May be. Folks, I'm here to tell you that we're getting ourselves in a trap if that's gonna be the reason. I know. I know what it is. I know you're sick and tired of the Republicans putting people up that sound stupid and look stupid. Meanwhile, we have this Obama who's said to be the smartest guy in the world and so smart we can't even keep up with him.

"His light's so bright we can't even look at him without being blinded, so we gotta find somebody can compete with that." We need somebody with ideas that are gonna cream Obama's ideas, somebody that's cheerful, optimistic, confidently conservative. Everything else will fall into place. This debate business, I'm gonna tell you: You're getting sucked into a trap on this intelligence business, but I understand it. When it's television, let me tell you a dirty little secret: People will vote more on what they see than what they hear on TV. It happens every time. So if somebody looks "fink" on TV, if they look unkempt on T, it doesn't matter what they say. When I did my now famous television show, I can't tell you how this happened. I would do what I thought was a great, powerful monologue, even maybe throw in a couple video clips, and the most people want to talk to me about was my tie and where did I get it.


RUSH: We had a caller that said that Gingrich will mop Obama up during the debates.  I remember three weeks ago, maybe a month ago talking about this very aspect, and I remember Snerdley arguing with me about this whole notion of how important the debates are, and I know what drives this.  I can remember it myself all during the Bush years, I'd run into people that would just constantly tell me and ask me why I could support somebody so stupid. Bush is just so dumb, and he looks dumb, looks like deer-in-the-headlight eyes when you've got a TV camera on him and so forth. 

A lot of people on our side got fed up with it, got fed up with the allegation that all of our candidates are stupid, or they sound like hayseed hicks, or what have you.  None of that's ever attached to Clinton.  Clinton had a southern accent, he talked like this, (impression) good old boy and all that kind of stuff, the astroturf in the back of the El Camino. But nobody ever told anybody that Clinton was stupid.  The charge was made against Bush, and the Bush White House never defended it. So the attraction a lot of people had for Gingrich is they think that he will mop the floor with Obama in a debate, and my only point is that I can understand this visceral desire to erase this notion that Obama is so smart when he's not but that he sounds smart. 

So we want to get some real pleasure, we want somebody that's smarter than Obama, sounds smarter than Obama, looks smarter than Obama, wipes the floor with Obama, regardless what they're saying.  My only point is that on television people don't remember what you say.  They remember what they see.  I learned this firsthand when I hosted my own immensely popular television show.  I'll tell you, folks, critics, audience critics of a radio show and a TV show, the criticisms are entirely different.  And it was an adjustment for me.  'Cause I'm used to radio. 

When I started my television show in 1992, I'd done nothing but radio, and radio is a whole different ball of wax, the way you connect with the audience on radio is much different than television 'cause there aren't any pictures, so you have to paint pictures. 
Radio is theater of the mind in any number of ways.  The way people listen to radio is much different than the way they watch television.  With television, you can sit there and basically use half of your sensor perception, you can sit there and just get zoned out by what you see.  Sometimes people have the television on in the background, they're not even watching it, they're just listening to it.  But when they do watch it, it's what they see. 

I remember when I was starting this show, people said, "You're gonna have to use video clips. You just can't sit there and do a monologue for 20 minutes, people aren't gonna want to watch that."  On radio there's no choice, there is nothing to see.  But because of that, I've always found that radio listeners pay far greater attention. If you got a talented broadcaster, highly trained broadcast specialist who understands radio, then you can create a connection that's unbreakable, magnetic, because the listener has to devote 100% of the hearing perception in order to get it.  A talk show, for example, will never be background if it's any good, but music radio will be, elevator music, Muzak. If you have the radio on, music, you walk around, do other things, talk radio, you aren't, you are totally devoted to it.  But on television it's not the case.  It's an entirely different thing.  People remember what they see. 

I can remember countless times doing what I thought was just a powerful, wonderful, really great penetrating, unarguable monologue, and at the end of the program I'd check e-mail or just talk to people, I was stunned how people didn't get that at all.  They thought it was okay and good, but they didn't see it nearly the way I did because I wasn't concerned with what things looked likem but a television audience has no choice.  So I would literally get more comments on my ties than on what I had said.  There were a couple of exceptions.  The Bill Clinton, Ron Brown memorial video where he's walking along with this preacher from Pennsylvania, I forget, Tony Campolo, walking along, and they're laughing and they're telling jokes, and Clinton spots the camera, and in less than a full step starts fake crying.  We ran it over and over and over again, but then again that was something visual, and people remembered that and never got tired of seeing it.  Tony Campolo kept laughing and telling jokes while Clinton's wiping fake tears from his eyes. 

I remember when I was in Sacramento there was a local TV infobabe anchorette who was hired to do a weekend talk show on KFBK, Karen something.  And she was stunned after just two weeks, she'd go to the grocery store, people that heard her on the radio would tell her how brilliant they thought she was or the great points that she made.  They commented to her about what they heard her say, and she had never gotten that on television.  What she got was reactions to her wardrobe or her appearance, so forth.  So this is a long way of saying if you think that getting somebody that can outdebate Obama, and there may not be more than two, Obama may not do more than one.  I mean it would be extraordinary if there were three of them. 

Normally, there's one or two, sometimes three; but Obama may not go for the full boat for this very reason. It's gonna depend on who the nominee is. Look at Kennedy-Nixon. Look at the debate in 1960. People that heard that debate on the radio thought it was a Nixon slam-dunk. People that watched that debate saw a sweaty Nixon. Nixon had sweat all over his lip, underneath his nose; he looked nervous. Whoever dressed him was black and white. He looked totally gray. Kennedy with a darker suit, I believe, looked vibrant and so forth. People that watched the debate, it wasn't even a contest. But in most cases, in the age of television, the better looking candidate always wins. Regardless what they say. There are exceptions, obviously, of course, to everything.

But I'm just suggesting: Don't get caught up too much in this notion of supporting somebody 'cause you think they might mop the floor with Obama in a debate. I know you'd love to see it. We all would. But it's not that big a determining factor.



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