RUSH: Benjamin Carson is still on the "What do you think of Rush Limbaugh" tour. Now it's CNN and Jacob Tapper. We move on here to audio sound bites 5 and 6. Last night's CNN new show hosted by Jake Tapper, The Lead, Benjamin Carson, pediatric neurosurgeon, Johns Hopkins. Jake Tapper wanted to ask Dr. Carson about me, as he had been the previous day on Fox.
TAPPER: Rush Limbaugh says you've got Democrats terrified. Listen to him.
RUSH ARCHIVE: I think Dr. Benjamin Carson has probably got everybody in the Democrat party scared to death. It's going to be really hard to demonize this guy -- really, really hard -- partially because of his race, but not just because he's African-American. It's because you can call this guy all kinds of demonic names, he just doesn't fit the bill.
TAPPER: He says it's not because of your race, sir, and I take him at his word, but I do wonder, as a conservative or a libertarian or independent conservative, wherever you are on the spectrum, why do you think there are so few African-American conservatives?
RUSH: That's kind of a disjointed question: Well, I take Limbaugh at his word that he doesn't think you've got people scared because of your race. I mean that, folks. I mean, his race is part of it. The Democrats are totally focused on race, and gender, and other surface identifiers of people. The left totally focuses on that, and they're going to be scared to death, just like they were of Clarence Thomas. You know, if Ben Carson desires a political career and is successful, he is going to stand as an example that you can become whatever you want, the best in the world at something, and you don't have to be a Democrat to do it. You don't have to go through the Democrat Civil Rights Movement to do it. You don't have to go through Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton to do it.
That's the threat that he poses as far as the racial aspect is concerned. It's the same threat that Clarence Thomas posed when he was nominated for the Supreme Court. Clarence Thomas is arguably one of the most powerful black men in the country, and there's no affirmative action there and he didn't bow down to the Democrat Party or, you know, play off of what happened, or any of that sort of stuff. He just lived his life. The same with Dr. Carson.
Dr. Carson has an up-from-nothing success story that the Democrat Party says is not possible in America. He's got an up-from-nothing success story that scares them because it stands in stark contrast to their message to not just African Americans, but to everybody. The Democrat Party doesn't want people to think that becoming Ben Carson is possible in America. It's too unjust. It's too unfair. It's too immoral. There's no way a black guy could become that good and that powerful, not on his own. He threatens all that.
But there's another reason he threatens them and that is he's impossible to demonize. Now, I talked about this yesterday. Why is Ben Carson tough to demonize? There are many reasons for it. Among them is he doesn't appear to have an agenda and as such is nonthreatening. But he also exudes leadership. This is fundamental and this is what's scary and what will become even scarier to the Democrats is that Ben Carson attracts people precisely because he simply exudes leadership.
Look what he did. The National Prayer Breakfast, he stood up to the president of the United States without appearing to do so and certainly without being disrespectful. He didn't even address the president in standing up to him. He essentially presented an alternative idea to the way the president wants to do things, and it was attractive to people, and that's going to be frightening. He showed leadership, principle, inspires people, impossible to demonize, and that's why he's scary.
So Jake Tapper, in asking the question says, "Okay, I'll take Limbaugh at his word that he's really not talking about you being untouchable because you're black" and then jumps off to another area entirely: "Why do you think there are so few African American conservatives?" And here's what Dr. Carson said.
CARSON: I actually know quite a few of them but I think, you know, there has developed a culture where one party in particular tends to be seen as the one that is protecting you, that is protecting your rights, and that happens to be the Democratic Party for many people in the African American community. What I really would like to aim toward is a situation where we get people to rise and to utilize the tremendous potential that God has given them, and to work with each other so that we can all rise together, rather than pretty much having a class of people where we kind of pat them on the head and say, "There, there, you poor little thing. We're going to take care of you."
RUSH: Oh, man, oh, man, oh, man. But did you hear how he said that? He could have been talking to the Kiwanis Club. He could have been talking to you and your family in the kitchen or in the living room. It was as casual and as unthreatening as it could be, but it was pointed, it was correct, and it, I think, was inspiring. He took Tapper's question and he expanded on it: Well, why aren't there any more black conservatives? And he took the occasion to explain how the Democrat Party actually isn't helping anybody. "You know, we're going to protect you. Okay, we'll protect you. You've got the deck stacked against you. You don't have a prayer in this country. You don't have a chance. We'll protect you."
Carson wants people to have a different attitude on life. He wants people to realize their potential. He wants people to realize how good they can be, how much they can do, what they can accomplish, recognize their God-given talents, their God-given freedom to rise up, instead of sitting around being patted on top of the head and saying, "There, you poor thing, we're going to take care of you." But he says all that in a way that is impossible -- well, it's not impossible to demonize because they're going to try. Mark my words, they will. They don't know anything else. The left, if he does act on aspirations to seek political office, they will try to demonize him. It's all they can do. It's all they know how to do. They are certainly not going to deal with him on his ideas, like they don't deal with any of us on our ideas.
RUSH: Maria in Gainesville, Virginia. Welcome. You're up first on Open Line Friday. Great to have you. Hi.
CALLER: Hi, Rush, how are you?
RUSH: Good. Thank you.
CALLER: Thanks for taking my call. I just wanted to talk about Dr. Carson. He actually operated on my 10-year-old daughter two years ago, and he is the real deal. He is one of the most humble people I have ever met. People are saying because he's a surgeon, he must think he's better than everyone. He's not like that at all. He spent so much time with our daughter.
RUSH: Wait, wait. Hold it just a second. Who have you heard say that?
CALLER: Well, I heard somebody called in yesterday and was reading different comments and saying that, as far as burdens are concerned -- and I've actually dealt with doctors before who aren't going to spend very much time with you. But he's completely different. I think the first time we saw him, we were in his office for an hour, and he spent most of the time talking to my daughter. He asked her about school, how were her grades, what kind of activities is she in.
He took a real interest in her and that really mattered. You know, she was 10 years old and terrified about to go in to have brain surgery. She told me, "I'm really not that scared, Mom, because it's Dr. Carson operating on me and I trust him. He's great." And he is. He really is. He's so humble. The way he speaks in his speeches is sincere. The first time I saw him at the Prayer Breakfast, I couldn't believe it. That's how he talks to us. Just, you know, like you say: It's like he's just in your living room.
RUSH: I know.
CALLER: And that's the way that it is in his office.
RUSH: I think it's a key ingredient.
RUSH: It's a fundamental ingredient to who he is. But look, the reason I asked you who said that about him, is this is a hasty generalization that some people make. I mean, there are some doctors who have very, very healthy egos.
RUSH: Particularly surgeons who specialize in something that is extremely intricate like the brain.
RUSH: But I think a lot of people have a built-in respect for doctors. Surgeons are held in awe, and that's a starting point. Now, some people have bad experiences with doctors who have no bedside manner, that kind of thing.
RUSH: Clearly none of that applies to him. None of it does.
CALLER: Oh, no, no, no. Not at all. When he came out of surgery, he just said, "You know, everything went great. Things are going really well, and praise God," he says. He was just a wonderful, wonderful man, and I was pretty sure he was conservative with how much he was interested in education, and I'm a public schoolteacher myself. So I was pretty sure he was conservative. And, of course, I'm in the minority as a conservative teacher, but --
RUSH: Well, he doesn't want to be labeled. Somebody calls him a Republican, and he will talk about the Democrats that he knows. If somebody references the fact he's a conservative, he'll talk about the libertarians that he knows. He's studiously avoiding the labels, understandably so. The labels equal branding, and he doesn't want to be associated with any of it. I think just from what I've seen... I haven't met him. I only know him by virtue of television and the sound bites that we played here.
But it's obvious he's a traditionalist. It's obvious that he's an American. I mean, above all else, this guy is an American of our founding. That's what he is. He is compassionate, he has great concern for people who can't help themselves, but he's ruggedly individualistic and self-reliant, and believes in that. I think the guy is just an American, a solid American of our founding. He's exactly the kind of guy the Founding Fathers had in mind. They wrote the Constitution and imagined a citizenry capable of maintaining it.
RUSH: Eric in Chesapeake, Virginia, I want to grab you before time expires here. Hello, sir, and how are you?
CALLER: Hey, how are you doing, Rush? First-time caller. Been listening to you for a number of years. I just wanted to give my reasoning why I think the Democrats are terrified of Dr. Carson. The reason why, the main reason why I think he represents such a threat to Democrats is because he is an exact alternative to how the Democrats define black men in society. He reminds me a lot of how I grew up. I had a single mother that would not let me just not do my work and just, you know, put off things. I'm poor and as a result I've learned over time how to rely on myself because I've actually seen the results of that. And what I'm proud of is the fact that he's out there, and he's not afraid of anybody. He's quick on his feet. Somebody attacks him, he doesn't necessarily counterattack but he throws common sense back at them, and that's almost indefensible. It's hard to even fight against that.
RUSH: You know, Eric, I have to tell you that's an important thing you've added here. He's fearless. He doesn't appear as though he could be intimidated into changing these core principles that he has, or at least if not intimidating him to change them, intimidating him to shut up about them. It doesn't seem like that can happen. He does exude a calm confidence.
CALLER: I agree. If you grew up like he did, he had to work hard for the things he's done in life, and he has such a large compassion that he's, you know, he's not afraid to try to show people the right way to do things.
RUSH: That's exactly right. You know why the Democrats don't like that? The reason why the Democrats don't like these up-from-nothing success stories that feature hard work is because they think it doesn't work for everybody, and that's not fair. And obviously this guy had some kind of an advantage that we don't know about yet. It might be his IQ, but he had some kind of advantage that we don't know about yet. But if it were the real America where he grew up, it wouldn't have happened. That's the attitude they have about it. But, look, I appreciate the call. I'm glad for your input on it. It's true.