RUSH: There are two stories today that are aimed at helping Obama. One of them's in the Washington Post. I forget where the other one is. They're trying to explain our dismal unemployment numbers. And they say: You know, folks, it's not really as bad as everybody thinks. What's happening is the Baby Boomers are retiring. That's why the labor force participation rate is so low. The Baby Boomers are just retiring!
That is such smoke that they are blowing. I harped on this on Thursday and Friday last week. Forget percentages. The number of people, adults, not working in this country is 88 million, out of an adult population of 200 million. That's simply unacceptable. That doesn't equal a great nation. That doesn't equal national productivity. That does not equal a growing economy. Eighty-eight million people not working!
And if you want to try to come in here and massage it and say, "Well, yeah, but some of them are retired Baby Boomers, it's really not that bad." It doesn't matter. Still able-bodied people, 88 million of them, are not working. The numbers of people on food stamps today versus the beginning of the decade doubled or tripled. So we're clearly trending in the direction of France, but that's what this election's about. We're gonna find out. This election is about stopping that trend, or at least slowing it down.
There's all kinds of polling data out there today. Politico has a story that Romney, depending on how you read this, is up with undecideds and independents by plus 20. It's a Battleground poll. "Six months out from Election Day, with the Republican primary drawing to a close, there has been a predictable tightening in the Presidential race, according to the latest Politico-George Washington University Battleground Poll. While no one would ever mistake Mitt Romney as the consensus candidate of a still-skeptical GOP, many have underestimated this facile candidate’s ability to 'Etch A Sketch' his way to competitive standing in the general election."
Let's move to page two and the numbers. "The attitudes of undecided voters are key." Of course! They always are to the Inside-the-Beltway Crowd. The independents and the undecideds, they're the only people that determine elections. "They comprise only a sliver of the electorate but tend to be independent, secular, and downscale. They like Obama personally (65% approve) but are much more unsure of Romney (30% approve, 33% disapprove, 38% unsure) (sic). They are critical of the President’s job performance..." Only 30% approve.
Now, figure this: 65% personal likeability and 30% job approval. That means twice as many people like the guy personally as think he's doing a good job. Now, what could possibly explain this? What could possibly explain it? Sixty-five percent personal popularity. As we have asserted on this program on several occasions: I don't buy in likability business. I think it's all a myth, this Cool Hand Luke kind of guy -- calm, cool, collected. This is the Wilder Effect. We have to consider this. We have to consider the Wilder Effect.
And that is simply non-African-American, nonminority respondents in polls telling the pollster (either on the phone or in person, however it happens) when they're asked, "Yeah, yeah, yeah! Put it down: I love Obama! Put it down! I want to see it. Put it down: I loooove Obama! I want to see you write it down." What about his job performance? "Stinks. Guy's doing the worst job. But I like him! You put it down. I like him. Don't you dare put anything else down there. I like him. You got that, Mr. Pollster? I love the guy. He doesn't know what he's doing, but I love him! You got it?"
No question that there's some of that going on. The independents, who largely make up the undecided vote, give Obama... Well, what this boils down to is that Romney basically is up ten in independents. I'm not gonna bother reading the numbers. There are too many numbers here as I read it. They break it down on middle class, lower class, Democrat-versus-Republican, pro-economy, anti-economy. When all is finished and said and done, Romney's up plus-ten in independents. Even now, as we speak.
Oh, and voter registration is down among Hispanics and blacks. From the Washington Post: "The number of black and Hispanic registered voters has fallen sharply since 2008, posing a serious challenge," it says here, "to the Obama [regime] in an election that could turn on the participation of minority voters. In the 2008 election, the robust turnout among black and Latino voters is credited with putting Obama over the top in key swing states, including Virginia and New Mexico." Did you know that? It was only the black and Latino vote that made Obama win.
I don't buy that, either, but that's what they want us to believe here in the Washington Post. "Voter rolls typically shrink in nonpresidential election years..." Let me tell you something about this. I have a good friend here in South Florida who is involved in local politics. He showed me a website. And this is nothing you haven't heard. It's nothing that is gonna shock you. There is a house across the bridge here that's vacant, that in the voter registration rolls has ten people living in it. They're all Democrats, and this website is devoted to finding all these various types of fraud.
The fraud in the voter registration rolls is nationwide. It's everywhere. It's predominantly Democrat, but you will find some Republican. Statistically it's unavoidable. But when, therefore, there is shrinkage, there is real panic on the left, because they know they're living a lie, and when Realville enters the Village of Lie, Realville always trumps. "Voter rolls typically shrink in non-presidential election years and registrations among whites fell at roughly the same rate, but this is the first time in nearly four decades that the number of registered Hispanics has dropped significantly." Why would that happen?
Why for the first time in 40 years? When I hear this, you know, I'm naturally curious person, and I ask: Why is this the first time in nearly four decades that the number of registered Hispanics has dropped significantly? Tell me why! Tell me. Why could that be? How could this happen? We're talking registered voters, now, folks. First time in 40 years? Wasn't there a statistic that we shared with you either last week or the week prior in which it has been discovered that illegal immigrants are leaving the United States at about the same rate they are arriving?
It's 1.4 million leaving; 1.5 million arriving. Maybe it's "verse vice-a," but it's a near washout. Now, you might be saying, "Rush, we're talking about voter registration rolls and illegals can't register to vote." You don't think so? You don't think an empty house that has ten Democrats registered to vote (laughing), some of them can't be Hispanics that are illegal? With ACORN and the unions and all the other interest groups that are working on making this possible? So I don't know. But it's the first thing I thought of.
For the first time in 40 years, Hispanic voter registration has dropped significantly. "That figure fell 5% across the country, to about 11 million, according to the Census Bureau. But in some politically important swing states, the decline among Hispanics... is much higher: just over 28% in New Mexico, for example, and about 10% in Florida. For blacks, whose registration numbers are down 7% nationwide..." By the way, all this is why the left does not want photo ID required to vote.
"'The only explanation out there is the massive job loss and home mortgage foreclosures, which disproportionately affected minorities,' said Antonio Gonzalez, president of the William C. Velasquez Institute, a nonpartisan policy group that focuses on Latinos. 'When you move, you lose your registration.'" So, according to Antonio Gonzalez, it's because job losses and foreclosures are forcing people out of their homes and, "When you move, you lose your registration." Not when you're a Democrat, you don't! Voter registration for "white Hispanics" on the Democrat side is down one. Actually not 1%, just total. One "white Hispanic" has dropped from the Democrat voting rolls.
It was in Florida, I think.
RUSH: By the way, folks, if, as the Washington Post today says -- and I think there's somebody else, a guy from Moody's. His name is Mark Zandi. Both are saying that part of that unemployment number that's really, really bad is Baby Boomers retiring. Well, what do you retire from? A job. You retire from a job. If you're retiring, you're doing something. Now, you would think, therefore, that if people are retiring, then more people should be hired. I think the effort's being made here to mask how bad it is. The number you need to keep in mind, as I say, is 88 million.
Eighty-eight million mostly able-bodied Americans are not working.