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Hurricane Sandy and Romney's Momentum: The Conventional Wisdom Doesn't Compute

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Last night I turned on Fox for the first time in a long time. I don't watch cable news anymore, folks. It's either too infuriating or there's nothing to learn there. It's like I don't watch the Sunday shows, either. It's nothing against Fox. I don't watch CNN or MSNBC. It's not just Fox. But I don't watch the Sunday shows, either. I used to never miss them back in Sacramento and my early days in New York.

They were all educational. They ceased being educational years ago. I don't learn anything. All I learn is that Democrats in the media are Democrats first and media second, and I know what they're gonna say before they say it, and I don't need to hear them say it to know what they're gonna say. So I don't watch. As a result, there was something I didn't know that has become Republican consultant conventional wisdom that I think is full of it.

Do you know what I learned last night?

I learned that Romney lost all the momentum that he had because of Hurricane Sandy. No, no, no. I didn't know that. But I watched, and I don't care who it was that appeared on Fox. It was first on O'Reilly, and then Hannity, and then after that Greta, all kinds of people. Here's the story: "Romney lost the momentum! He was on a roll. Gallup had him up five points. Then the hurricane hits, and Obama automatically looks presidential.

"And then Obama got the big bear hug from Christie, and that totally shut Romney's momentum down. And only yesterday...?" All of these people said the same thing. "Only yesterday did Romney's momentum resume." I'm watching this, and I'm literally watching with incredulity. I'm asking myself: Do they really think people's attitudes change like this? For example, you are a hot-to-trot Republican, or even independent, Romney voter.

You can't wait for Election Day.

Then Hurricane Sandy comes, and all of a sudden your enthusiasm for Romney dies, and you start thinking of voting for Obama. And, of course, then the Christie hug! That makes you really lose your enthusiasm for Romney. But then on Sunday and Monday, you know what? You start thinking, "I like Romney again." I don't know anybody who thinks this way! Not in big numbers. Now, Snerdley is looking at me like I'm loopy.

You disagree with me on...? (interruption) You know what I think happens here? By the way, it didn't matter who the consultant was. Brit Hume, Dr. Krauthammer, it didn't matter. That's what happened last week. That's what was formulated to explain the polls tightening. Hurricane Sandy. I'm sitting here saying, "This why I don't watch this stuff anymore, folks." I don't conceive of human behavioral patterns that way.

See, what I think is going on is somebody that everybody respects formulates a theory that's based on their own fear, and then they project that to all of us. So their fears become your reality in their mind. They're the analysts and they think that people's attitudes shift on a dime like this. There may be evidence in some cases. The Bush DUI in 2000, that did deflate his poll numbers by three or four points.

But that was something real that involved Bush and that's an open election. There's no incumbent with a horrible, rotten record. It's not even comparable. So I'm sitting watching this. "But it's okay because the momentum's coming back now, and the momentum started shifting back to Romney on Sunday." I said, "Why?" "Well, the reason the momentum started shifting back to Romney is because people then saw that Obama wasn't doing anything about Sandy.

"He was out campaigning and he did that one appearance..." I said, "You really think people think this way?" They give up on Romney 'cause of the hurricane and they see Obama looking presidential. But then they get all depressed, and after a while they see Obama not doing anything and they go, "Okay, I'm back to Romney." And then I started asking myself: "Who knows that Obama's not doing anything?"

This hurricane and the aftermath are being nowhere near covered like Katrina was. Who outside of New York knows the hell these people are going through? I submit nobody does! Unless you watch Fox, you don't know the hell. Unless you watch New York local, you don't know what these people are going through. We don't have Anderson Cooper on top of the Superdome. We don't have Shep Smith crying 24/7 from an interstate highway in New Orleans like he was during Katrina.

We don't have any of that.

We don't have a CBS, ABC, NBC 24/7 reporting from New York and New Jersey about the hardships.

My contention is that people around the country don't even really know, they're not being told nearly to the extent they were about Hurricane Katrina.  Therefore, how can there be all this momentum shift?  I mean, this is not momentum; this is stopping on a dime and then picking back up on a dime.  I just had to make this observation to you, 'cause I saw this last night and it just did not compute.  I don't want anybody to misunderstand here.  I am not picking fights or feuds with anybody.  I'm just reacting.  If you would have been in my library last night watching this with me, you would have heard the same thing.  I'm looking around, saying, "How in the hell can this happen? How the hell can this be?" 

So, since you weren't in my living room last night, I'm telling you today what I was thinking last night and saying.  And then I try to understand, okay, why do they think this?  And then I start putting together my theory that, well, it's their fear that Romney's losing momentum, and then they project that fear on to all of us as us being just like them in their fears and so forth.  And of course I don't think that happens.  What's the latest in this saga?  The latest in this saga is that Obama, wherever he was yesterday, Madison, Wisconsin, Springsteen concert, put Springsteen on the phone to Governor Christie.  Governor Christie talks to Springsteen and then tells the AP he went home and cried because it meant so much to him. 

Okay, now, what does that do to the Romney momentum?  I gotta leave it to the expert analyst to figure that out for me.  What did that do to the Romney momentum, that Christie cried after talking to Springsteen?  Such drivel, you know?

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  I'll tell you something, that whole Sandy narrative, that it helped Obama.  Who started that?  It wasn't our guys.  That was the media that started that, kept hoping and praying that Sandy would give Obama -- but they knew last week that Obama needed a boost.  They've known all along that Obama doesn't even have his base cemented and tied down.  So they start that, then our guys agree with it.  Even if you think it, why say it?  If you are a Republican strategist, say that on TV, people watching presume or assume that as a Republican strategist, you are strategizing to help Republicans win.  Why the hell say that even if you do -- I don't understand this stuff. 

END TRANSCRIPT

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