RUSH: Jacksonville, Florida, and Mike, great to have you on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, Rush, I'm confused right now. Either you and Hannity are totally off base or Karl Rove and Byron York are totally off base because they say only a very small percentage of the Obamacare's funding is discretionary spending. The vast majority of it is mandatory, written into the law, and can't be defunded unless Obamacare is repealed. We know that's not gonna happen, so what am I missing?
RUSH: Well, I'm not sure who's right in this, is the point. See, what I'm looking at beyond the specifics here is a progression of things, Mike. As I mentioned earlier, when Obamacare was passed, there was all this repeal energy, and all these Republicans assured all their voters that that's what they were gonna do. Romney said it was the first thing he was gonna do if he was elected. Well, he wasn't so that's down the tubes.
Then the Supreme Court renders their decision, and the Republicans, once again, they rev everybody up, all their voters. They tell 'em that they're gonna repeal it, gonna make it happen. They're gonna work hard. The American people don't want it. The polling data continues to show that an increasing number of Americans don't want this -- including now, union members that voted for Obama. There's a rising chorus of opposition to it.
CALLER: I understand that, Rush.
RUSH: But now the fight's gone from the Republicans. It's absolutely gone, and that's what puzzles me.
CALLER: Well, can I lay out a scenario for you?
RUSH: Sure, lay it out. Lay out all you want.
CALLER: Okay, here's the deal. They defund small percentage that is discretionary. The rest of it goes into effect and it's a disaster -- as we all know it's gonna be -- and that opens the door wide open to the Democrats to say, "See! See! You Republicans didn't want to go along with it, and that's why it's failing," and blame it on them. Blame the whole thing on them.
RUSH: You know, I'm worn out on that. I've been doing this for 25 years. I've been behind this mic 25 years, and every Republican strategy to not do something is, "The Democrats are gonna blame us!" Well, they do anyway. The Democrats are gonna blame them no matter what they do. Every failure that happens is going to get blamed on the Republicans even if they do nothing.
CALLER: Except Obamacare.
RUSH: Even if they agree with the Democrats, they're going to get blamed. We're not gonna be able to stop that.
CALLER: Well, how can they get blamed for Obamacare when not one of them voted for it?
RUSH: Well, how can they get blamed for all the stuff they already do get blamed for? They get blamed for hating Hispanics, they get blamed for a War on Women, they get blamed for all kinds of clap that they don't do and it sticks.
CALLER: Well, I think this is the one thing... I hate to say it, but my take on it is, "Hey, wash your hands of it. Okay, fine, Supreme Court. You said it's okay. Democrats, you voted for it. It's yours," and let 'em own it.
RUSH: Yeah. That's just like '92. "Let's let Clinton win! Let's show everybody how rotten the Democrats' policies are. Let's let Obama win." This is gonna take years for this to implode. I don't disagree with the people who say it's gonna implode, but it isn't gonna happen in two years. It's not gonna implode in three or four.
CALLER: I think the best chance is to let it stay, don't risk losing the House, and then go all out for the Senate and the White House in '16.
RUSH: And to repeal it or to go through the effort to fight the continuing resolution and maybe shut down the government would be to risk losing the House? Is that what you think?
CALLER: That's what a lot of people who are smarter than me think.
RUSH: You say that... I'm gonna find it. You say that they're smarter than you are, but what are they winning?
CALLER: Well, Rush, I just don't think the math is there to fight this fight now. This is only... According to these guys, such a small percentage is discretionary spending. The vast majority of it... What the heck was it? I had it right here. The Medicare and exchanges and all, that's the law.
RUSH: Yeah. So is Medicare and Medicaid. So is Medicare and Medicaid, and they're both bankrupt and broke, and how's that hurting the Democrats?
CALLER: Well, I --
RUSH: They own these entitlements, and they own the seasoned citizens. We let 'em own all of this crap, and they win big, and we still get ripped for not caring about people, not loving people, not liking people.
CALLER: I just... I can only go by my gut, Rush, which says the tide is turning and the momentum is maybe gonna get killed if they do this now, because it's not gonna affect it, and it opens the door. To me, it just doesn't make sense.
RUSH: Well, are you thinking, "Okay, stand aside. Let Obamacare be fully implemented. Don't even fight it," and then we'll win the Senate, we'll keep the House and win the White House 'cause people are gonna be so mad?
CALLER: Yes, and then we can repeal it. According to these guys, that's the only way you can defund it anyhow really to any significant level.
RUSH: Wait, you just said you couldn't.
CALLER: No, only if they repeal Obamacare, which means we gotta have the White House, obviously.
RUSH: Well, but, see, that isn't gonna happen because we're gonna go all-in for amnesty.
CALLER: No. No. No. I hope you're wrong. I don't see 'em doing it.
RUSH: I'm just telling you: Thinking like yours is why we're losing.
CALLER: You could be right, but, Rush, I think --
RUSH: I mean the evidence is there. This is not even an opinion. It's there.
CALLER: Maybe not in this particular scenario, Rush. Because what good does it do to defund, according to Rove and Byron York, less than probably --
RUSH: It's not just about that. It's about making the case for who we are, Mike. It's about making the case for what they are. You talk about the future. It's about drawing the contrast between who we are, and whatever they are. It's about being willing to tell the American people what's gonna happen because of what the Democrats have done, what's gonna happen the economy and has happened 'cause what the Democrats have done. Our party isn't doing this. Our party is caving.
CALLER: But, Rush, we told 'em Obamacare was gonna be a disaster, and these people, Rush, are not gonna see it until it hits 'em upside the head like with a frying pan. That's our only hope here. I hate to say it, 'cause people are that stupid.
RUSH: You know what? I hope the sun goes out so we find out how terrible it is.
RUSH: By the way, folks, this worry about the government shutdown destroying the Republican Party. I spent a lot of time on this on Friday, and it is a myth that it is government shutdown destroyed the Republican Party 1995. It did not. We won two Senate seats in the '96 elections. We did not lose seats in the Senate after the '95 budget shutdown. I think we lost nine in the House, which is standard operating procedure.
But we didn't lose 20 or 30. We also set the stage for welfare reform and a number of substantive policy things. The government shutdown of 1995 was not a Republican debacle. But the media says it was, and so everybody scared to death and totally preoccupied about what the media says about them thinks it was a debacle. But in the real world, it was not a debacle -- and that's my problem. We got too many people living in a media world and not in Realville.
RUSH: I finally said, "To hell with this discretionary versus nondiscretionary spending stuff." I wanted to find out exactly, because this is what's being said in Washington, "Well, so much of that is built in that we can't get rid of that spending in Obamacare, it's not discretionary spending." And I asked myself, "Well, then why is anybody even talking about it? If we can't defund, why is anybody talking about it?" There has to be a reason people are talking about it.
If it can't be done nobody would be talking about repealing it, but people are. And we've gotten to a point here where capitulation is now strategic wisdom. Strategic wisdom and political victory, capitulation. "Let the Democrats have what they want, and the American people will see, Obamacare is gonna implode. So let it implode, and let the Democrats own it." Okay, so we surrender before we even take a stand, was my point to the caller.
We've got an opportunity here to tell people who we are. There is a future in this country. There are additional elections. Hopefully we want to win 'em, and we want to win 'em not by hoping the Democrats end up in disfavor with the American people. Why do we have to sit around and wait for that to happen, when there isn't much evidence that it does happen? The Democrats don't end up in disfavor; we do. And why? Because there's a bunch of lies about us, and we never counter them. We get afraid of the lies, and then we start trying to change our behavior to prove that we're being lied about. It never works.
So the strategery now is capitulate, and that's wisdom, and that's how we win. We let them have it. We let them own it and it'll implode and the American people will see, and then we win big. I don't like that way of winning. We just hope and pray that the people get fed up with Democrats and turn to us 'cause there isn't anybody else? Why don't we go out and make the case for ourselves? Well, look, I know why we don't because the Republican Party doesn't want to be conservative. And that's why it doesn't, and that's why it's not contrasting itself with the Democrats. They want to trade their base in.
They want a new base, folks. They don't like us. They're embarrassed, whatever the reason, they want a new base. They want a new base. Even if that means losing a couple of elections. But I don't understand why you don't even make the case. Fight it. The American people already don't like it. Let's align ourselves with them rather than sitting around and hoping that happens. Capitulation is now strategic wisdom and political victory. We surrender before we even make our case. Amnesty, Obamacare, you name it. And there are a lot of Republicans in Washington peddling this because they're not conservative.
I think one of the realities is there are a lot of Republicans who really don't have a problem with Obamacare. It's government, and government's okay. It's government. Government's good. It's government. It's the latest thing government's done and the people's representatives passed it and that's the way it is, 'nuf said. They really don't have a big problem. I mean, if they do, I don't see the evidence. This is my point in remembering, after Obamacare's passed, all these Republicans, I mean, a lot of them, they're wanting to get on this repeal bandwagon really fast, and they're promising us, and they're assuring us and they're telling us, and they even had some votes in the House, 30-some-odd votes to defund it, went through the motions. The Supreme Court makes the case. But anybody that comes out, like Ted Cruz is on Fox right now, any Republican comes out and speaks out against it, what does the Republican Party establishment do, not just Republican, the DC establishment tears 'em down.
Stand up in opposition to what Washington is doing and Washington stands up and tries to mow you down. Here's an opportunity to make the case, explain to people who we are, contrast. Never a greater opportunity to do that than now. Anyway, I went to Heritage, the trusty Heritage Foundation. Heritage Action for America, and this goes back to July the 12th. So this is 17 days ago.
"Isn’t defunding Obamacare impossible because most of the funding is ‘mandatory’ (or on ‘auto-pilot’) and cannot be amended via the annual appropriations process?" Heritage Foundation says no, defunding Obamacare is not impossible for the reasons that you've heard. "According to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the IRS, 'will incur substantial administrative costs to implement the law’s private insurance reforms and its changes to the federal health care programs.'
"And while Obamacare provided $1 billion in mandatory implementation funding when it was enacted, HHS projects that this is largely spent. According to CRS, Obamacare 'administrative costs will have to be funded through the annual discretionary appropriations.'"
Can I translate this for you? What the Heritage Foundation is saying is that the implementation money has already been spent, and they haven't done very much with it, obviously, and according to the Congressional Research Service, Obamacare's administrative costs will have to be funded through the annual -- that means every year -- discretionary -- means, don't have to spend it -- appropriations.
So the idea that the funding is mandatory and therefore can't be funded isn't true. We can defund the administrative costs by not allocating the money. And if they can't administrate it, then what?
"Furthermore, annual appropriations bills routinely carry funding limitations to block all sorts of activities (for example, the Hyde Amendment), as well make changes to mandatory spending. These latter provisions are called 'changes in mandatory program spending' (CHIMPS). Even if these riders were not so common-place, the stakes of so many provisions of Obamacare scheduled to take effect would present grounds for an exception."
Now, this is part of a frequently asked questions page or piece that Heritage posted on July the 12th, and one of the questions was: "Isn't defunding Obamacare impossible because the funding is mandatory?" And their answer here is "no." There's a lot of discretionary funding here. But Washington, not just the Democrats or Republicans but the entire place, Washington, is putting out the news that we can't touch it. It's written into law, it's mandatory, you can't take it back, just like you couldn't stop Social Security spending with a budget, you couldn't do it. You couldn't do it. Well, it turns out you can, according to the Heritage Foundation. It just means that Washington doesn't want to, folks. It's all it means. Washington doesn't want to.