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Why the Welfare Ad Gets Under Their Skin

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Greg in Bass Lake, California, great to have you on the program.  Hello.

CALLER: Hi, Rush. Thanks for taking my call.  Snerdley told me I only had a minute to talk to you, so I'll talk really fast.  I hope you can understand.  I retired from NBC News about 10 years ago.  Back in '93, you were gracious enough to stop on your way into the Tonight Show and sign your two books.  And that's the first time I met you.  I've been a long-time listener since the first time you went on the air. I think it was KNX 1070 in Los Angeles.  Now I'm up in Central California.

The reason for my call is this: On Wednesday you were perplexed as to why the Obama administration would be so upset over the Romney welfare ad that he's running.  And I think this is the reason why.  The answer is it goes right at Obama's strengths, or what they perceive as their strengths.  That being "fairness."  If you can remember all the times that Obama and Biden have gone out there and talked about "leveling the playing field" and that everybody needs to pay their fair share...

He's all about fairness, m'kay? So when Romney goes after the welfare, nobody in America -- especially the people who have built their businesses and especially the independents. What few of those are still left and undecided. Those people do not want to hear that people are sitting around getting a check and not doing work for the welfare check that they're getting in the mail.  And I think that's why they hate it so much.

RUSH:  Well, except those are the very people Obama's trying to reach.  Those are the votes that he wants.  He wants the votes of the slackers.  He wants the votes of people who no longer will have to work. 

CALLER:  No, but he also wants -- and where he's trailing -- is he needs the working-class vote.  I know you said he wrote the white working class vote off.

RUSH:  Yeah, he has.

CALLER:  But he needs people to vote for him besides these little constituency groups, all the minority groups.  He needs to get some people to cross over.  And some of the people who think, "Well, I work hard and I do my part. What's he talking about gutting welfare reform?  If somebody's going to get a check, I think they should have to work for it."  Most people agree with that, and he's losing people by saying that and by taking that action.

RUSH:  Okay.  Well, let's just accept your point.  The obvious point that I would have is: Obama's not doing anything.  Policy-wise, he's not saying anything that even talks about people in the middle class having to work.  All he's talking about is penalizing the rich.  He's trying to portray the middle class as a bunch of victims.  The rich have taken their jobs.  The rich are not paying them fairly.  The rich have stolen everything they've got from the poor.  He has written off the white, working class vote. 

And he's trying to suppress that vote. 

He is trying to depress those people.  He's trying to make sure that they don't vote at all since he's lost them.  And that's why the smear campaigns against Romney.  So why should so many people on welfare not have to pay their fair share?  I know what you're saying, and clearly the regime is upset about this.  I mean, there's no question they're upset about it.  In fact, let's go back. Let's grab number five.  This is the original ad.  This is the original Romney ad hitting Obama on gutting welfare. 

ANNOUNCER: In 1996, President Clinton and a bipartisan Congress helped end welfare as we know it, by requiring work for welfare. But on July 12th, President Obama quietly announced a plan to gut welfare reform by dropping work requirements.  Under Obama's plan, you wouldn't have to work and wouldn't have to train for a job.  They'd just send you your welfare check.  And welfare-to-work goes back to being plain old welfare.  Mitt Romney will restore the work requirement because it works.

RUSH:  Okay.  So the regime is fit to be tied.  The New York Times, all of the regimes favored media outlets are suggesting that this ad is the lowest of the low, that this ad is as bad as the Obama PAC ad with the guy claiming that Romney killed his wife.  This ad is mild in tone and in structure.  This is not a boisterous, loud, accusatory ad.  It's very laid back, but it's filled with facts.  Obama gutted the work requirements.  So why would Obama be ticked off about this? 

Now, the caller's point was that Obama needs an illusion here that he doesn't want more people on welfare, that he wants people having to work for what they get.  Well, nowhere else does Obama portray that.  Nowhere else does Obama act like he cares about that.  In fact, Obama's very public policy pronouncements, his very public statements on all this, tend to amplify and approve of victimhood and promote welfare.  So why is he upset here?  There's a new Obama ad that responds to this now. 

Listen to this next...

OBAMA:  I'm Barack Obama and I approve this message.

ANNOUNCER:  Seen this? Mitt Romney claiming that the president would end welfare work requirements?  The New York Times calls it "blatantly false."  The Washington Post says, "The Obama Administration is not removing the bill's work requirements at all.  In fact, Obama is getting states to move 20% more people from welfare to work."  And President Clinton's reaction to the Romney ad? "It's just not true."  Get the facts. 

RUSH:  Okay.  So they are clearly bugged by this.  And the caller may be right, that Obama is trying to create an illusion here, and this pierces it.  The Romney ad gives Obama away for who he really is.  And they have been going nuts. As this ad says, "Romney's lying about it!  We have not removed the work requirement!"

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Okay, let's stick with the Romney welfare, gutting-welfare ad that has the regime is so upset about.  No question Obama is trying to suppress the "white vote."  The white, working, middle class vote. Obama's trying to suppress that.  We know that they wrote that vote off starting in November of last year.  They knew as early as November of last year they had lost that voting block.  The old Reagan Democrats, essentially. 

White, working class Americans. 

Now, forget the racial component for a moment.  I think there is one but that's not what I want to focus on.  That's not the point.  Now Obama -- since about, I don't know, a month or two ago -- has been doing everything to suppress that vote.  A lot of Obama's ads and the PAC ads on television have been designed to suppress that vote by portraying Romney as anathema to them.  Remember now, they're white, working class (ie, middle class) voters. 

Obama is still counting on the fact that class warfare will work on them. Now, he knows they're not going to vote for him.  But if he can get them to not vote period, then it doesn't matter that he's written them off.  If they're not going to vote for him, the next task is to make sure they don't show up for Romney. How do you do that?  Well, you portray Romney as some rich money bags guy who isn't going to help them. And, not only that, doesn't even like them! He resents them. 

"Romney is a snooty rich guy, and all he cares about is his own wealth.  He doesn't want you to have any.  He's not going to cut taxes.  He's not going to do anything for you.  All Romney's going to do is come up with ways not to pay his own," blah, blah, blah.  You know the drill.  In the midst of all this, Obama comes along and relatively quietly guts welfare reform.  Now, why do it now?  You can do this after the election, even if you lose.  But why do it now? 

They tried to do it quietly so no one would notice, but that didn't work. 

Now, welfare reform required recipients to either try to get a job or train for one.  In fact, they did.  They had to try to get a job in order to get welfare, and it worked.  It reduced the welfare rolls by 50%.  Now, the one thing that we know is that Obama and the Democrat Party have hated welfare reform from the day Bill Clinton signed it.  The day Bill Clinton signed it in 1996, the Reverend Jackson and a number of others went on TV and told him that they expected him to "fix" it. 

If I'm not mistaken (I'm not sure of the timing of this), this was a big deal at the '96 Democrat convention.  Welfare reform.  They were fit to be tied over this.  They didn't like it, because they don't want people to have to work.  The Democrat Party wants slothful people.  They don't care that that's their voting base.  They're very happy about it. The more dependent people, the better.

The bigger government needs to be to take care of these people, however inadequately, the better.  So in the midst of all of this, in the midst of the left-wing of the Democrat Party constantly opposing the work requirements in 1996 -- and they've been trying to get rid of them ever since.  Why did Obama do this now?  All it's done is call attention to it.  And so where he's in the middle of trying to suppress the votes of the white, working class, here comes Romney with a truthful ad that's going to whip them back up into a frenzy. 

Whatever success, if any -- and I don't know. Whatever success Obama has had in angering white working class voters towards Romney where they might just sit out and not vote, now he's whipped them up into a frenzy.  Because the one thing the white, working class voters don't like is slothful welfare recipients.  They don't like slackers.  They don't like takers.  They don't like people sitting on the couch, getting a welfare check, watching television, when they know they're paying for it. 

So my question is: If this guy is such a brilliant politician, why would he undermine his own campaign strategy in the middle of the campaign by gutting the work requirements in welfare? Why do it now?  Because it just undermined everything they're trying to do.  This is why the Romney welfare ad has got them so discombobulated, because they've done it to themselves.  Obama has undercut his own strategy. Which again is to so depress or anger the white, working class that they don't vote.

Now Romney comes back with his ad.  Let's play it again.  It's so low key.  This is what has me amazed that the left is so upset about this, such a low key ad.  It's number five.  It's chock-full of the truth. 

ANNOUNCER: In 1996, President Clinton and a bipartisan Congress helped end welfare as we know it, by requiring work for welfare. But on July 12th, President Obama quietly announced a plan to gut welfare reform by dropping work requirements.  Under Obama's plan, you wouldn't have to work and wouldn't have to train for a job.  They'd just send you your welfare check.  And welfare-to-work goes back to being plain old welfare.  Mitt Romney will restore the work requirement because it works.

RUSH:  That ad is chock-full of truth.  They brought it on themselves. Why do it?  Now if we're going to assume that they're the smartest people around -- which a lot of people on our side do, and you may be one of them.  You may think they're so smart they smoke us all the time.  They're always two steps ahead of us.  Why undermine what is a major Obama effort, the suppression of the white, working class vote?  Because this ad of Romney's, the more it's seen, the more it whips them back up. 

So whatever success Obama had in ticking them off and making them think that Romney is rotten to the core so they're not even going to vote, now he just whipped them up into a frenzy.  Why do it?  Why do it now?  Well, you say his ideology made him do it.  And I think that's as good an answer as anything.  The Democrats hate the work requirement.  I also think something else. I think they believe that there are gains to be made by doing this.  There are additional votes from the welfare state for Obama by doing this.

They have to have made a calculation. 

Yet they're still fit to be tied over Romney. 

They get the New York Times to go out and talk about how this is the lowest of the low, this ad. F. Chuck Todd asks Romney, "Do you feel like you're in a race to the bottom?"  This ad is nothing.  This is not a dirty ad.  This is not a negative ad.  There's nothing whatsoever offensive about it, except it tells the truth.

END TRANSCRIPT

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