RUSH: You know, the response to the State of the Union last night is getting more positive reaction than the State of the Union speech itself. Mitch Daniels. And I have to tell you, other than his opening when he started, I said, "Oh, no, no, no, please." Then I started thanking God that nobody was watching 'cause it's a response that's, you know, 15 minutes after the State of the Union speech. But after he got through the open, it was good. It was really, really good. Mitch Daniels was really, really good in his response last night. Take away the first minute and a half, I was having panic attack in the first minute and a half, talking about how much we have to respect and love the presidency and respect and love Obama. He's a nice guy and all that sort of stuff.
But then, after getting that, that was perfunctory as it turned out, after getting that out of the way, he was called an extremist, he didn't use the word liar, but Mitch Daniels called Obama a liar in the classiest way I've ever heard it done. He called him pro-poverty. He articulated conservatism pretty well, really did. And at the end of it -- I knew this was gonna happen, too. I knew this was gonna happen. They went to the Fox All-Stars, and they went to Dr. Krauthammer of Krauthammer online.com, or Krauthammer review, whatever it is. And he said that there are no doubt people sighing with desire or something after watching Mitch Daniels. I guarantee you that out there in the Republican establishment there were people, kind of like what Madonna was doing when JFK Jr. married Carolyn Bessette, "Oh, no, what if? If only me." I guarantee you, the Republican establishment right now is trying to figure out a way to make it happen.
Remember, before the State of the Union show, we had a story on Monday, the headline story was "Establishment hoping to find a way to get Mitch Daniels back in the game." Well, I know his wife said no, but things change. I'm not predicting it. In fact, the unconventional wisdom is that it can't happen, it's unlikely to happen. It's way too late now anyway as a matter of law within the party, party rules, not so much law, party rules, the delegates are pledged. But there are people holding out hope. There were people holding out hope there would be anybody but Romney or Gingrich before last night. Now in Mitch Daniels' response, I got Cookie working on putting together some bites for you in case you'd missed it and didn't hear it.
RUSH: Let's listen to some Mitch Daniels sound bites. He did the response. This has created... Oh, you cannot imagine what's going on in the Republican establishment since last night into this morning and up to the present. There is... I don't quite know how to describe it. It's not quite buyer's remorse. There's just, "Oh, what if! Oh, if only," and then, "How can we maneuver things to get rid of these guys that are currently running and get this guy to say yes?"
There is such a mixture of disappointment yet anticipation and excitement about what could have been. It is near orgasmic on the establishment side. This is, "If we only ran..." (interruption) Well, but, see, when to look at... (interruption) No, no, no. It's not, "If we only ran a conservative." The Republican establishment doesn't look at Daniels as a conservative. It's why the speech was good but they don't look at him as a conservative. They look at him as a one of them, a moderate. They see him as a moderate. He's strong conservative on budget matters, but outside of that? "No, no, he's not an extremist racist, sexist, bigot, homophobe who appeals to the NASCAR hicks who are pro-life." (interruption)
Well, he called Obama an "extremist" but he did in a polite way after praising Obama first. Now, here's how Mitch Daniels opened. We don't have that. I'm gonna read that to you. When he started I said, "Oh, no! Oh, no." But when he got this out of the way, it turned around. Here was his open. He said, "The status of loyal opposition imposes on those out of power some serious responsibilities: To show respect for the presidency and its occupant, to express agreement where it exists. Republicans tonight salute our president, for instance, for his aggressive pursuit of the murderers of 9/11 and for bravely backing long-overdue changes in public education.
"I personally would add to that list admiration for the strong family commitment that he and the first lady have displayed to a nation sorely needing such examples," and you're probably thinking, if you haven't heard the rest, "Oh, my gosh! Rush was right. The Republican Party actually thinks the only way they've got to win this thing is by praising Obama, 'cause the independents love Obama, and he's personally popular. He's revered and loved, and if we criticize Obama, the independents are going to go running away." So that paragraph that I just read to you, that was the outreach to the independents -- and what followed was anything but what you just heard.
RUSH: Let's go to the Mitch Daniels sound bites now. Remember how he ended his open. You could say that this is a slap at Newt Gingrich. "I would personally add to that list of admiration the strong family commitment that the president and the first lady have displayed to a nation sorely needing such examples." That is what has made some Republicans think that Mitch Daniels might actually be changing his mind and that that was a slap at Newt. So we'll see. So you heard me read the open. Here is some of what else Mitch Daniels said.
DANIELS: As Republicans, our first concern is for those waiting tonight to begin or resume the climb up life's ladder. We do not accept that ours will ever be a nation of haves and have-nots. We must always be a nation of haves and soon-to-haves.
RUSH: Here he rips Obama's extremism.
DANIELS: The extremism that stifles the development of homegrown energy or cancels a perfectly safe pipeline that would employ tens of thousands, or jacks up consumer utility bills for no improvement in either human health or world temperature, is a pro-poverty policy. It must be replaced by a passionate pro-growth approach that breaks all ties and calls all close ones in favor of private sector jobs that restore opportunity for all and generate the public revenues to pay our bills. That means a dramatically simpler tax system of fewer loopholes and lower rates, a pause in the mindless piling on of expensive new regulations that devour dollars that otherwise could be used to hire somebody. It means maximizing on the new domestic energy technologies that are the best break our economy's gotten in years.
RUSH: The extremism that stifles the development of homegrown energy cancels a perfectly safe pipeline that would employ tens of thousands. He called that extremism. Jacks up consumer utility bills for no improvement in either human health or world temperature is a pro-poverty policy. He called Obama a liar in one of the most creative ways. "The president has to know what he's saying tonight isn't true." After praising him for being great on family values, he says, "The president has to know that what he says tonight just isn't true," and he said it very effectively. Here he defends the Republican Congress.
DANIELS: It's not fair and it's not true for the president to attack Republicans in Congress as obstacles on these questions. They and they alone have passed bills to reduce borrowing, reform entitlements, and encourage new job creation, only to be shot down time and time again by the president and his Democratic Senate allies.
RUSH: Who's defending the Republicans in Congress? There's nobody. They don't even defend themselves. Mitch Daniels did last night. And here he calls out Obama for dividing the nation.
DANIELS: No feature of the Obama presidency has been sadder than its constant efforts to divide us, to curry favor with some Americans by castigating others. As in previous moments of national danger, we Americans are all in the same boat. If we drift, quarreling and paralyzed over a Niagara of debt, we will all suffer, regardless of income, race, gender, or other category. If we fail to shift to a pro-jobs, pro-growth economic policy, there will never be enough public revenue to pay for our safety net, national security, or whatever size government we decide to have.
RUSH: And here he says Republicans stand for the individual against the state.
DANIELS: 2012 must be the year we prove the doubters wrong. The year we strike out boldly, not nearly to avert national bankruptcy, but to say to a new generation that America is still the world's premiere land of opportunity. Republicans will speak for those who believe in the dignity and capacity of the individual citizen; who believe that government is meant to serve the people rather than supervise them; who trust Americans enough to tell them the plain truth about the fix we are in and to lay before them a specific, credible program of change big enough to meet the emergency we are facing.
RUSH: That's Indiana Governor, Mitch Daniels, and just some of his remarks in his response last night. The whole thing, front-to-back, in continuity was really good, and one of the things that he counters here, this individual against the state, I can't tell you how important it is with Obama out there saying teamwork is what made this country great. Teamwork? Man, that is one of the biggest openings any Republican has had to run against Democrats in a long, long time, in an instructional, educational, factual, informative way. This country was established so the individual would triumph over government. It limited what government could do to constrain individual liberty and freedom. And Obama just spits that aside, "No, no, no, teamwork, government working with people."
RUSH: Now, here is the Mitch Daniels statement that you haven't heard yet in which he calls Obama a liar in one of the most creative ways. He comes very close to calling him a liar. In one of the most creative ways I've heard.
DANIELS: On these evenings, presidents naturally seek to find the sunny side of our national condition. But when President Obama claims that "the state of our union" is anything but grave, he must know in his heart that this is not true. The president did not cause the economic and fiscal crises that continue in America tonight, but he was elected on a promise to fix them, and he cannot claim that the last three years have made things anything but worse.
RUSH: Well, there is no denying that. There is literally no denying it -- and it was so powerfully stated coming off that 90-minute State of the Union Show of the president's.