RUSH: Now, let's grab sound bites 15 and 16, 'cause I mentioned earlier that there's an all-out effort now, an all-out assault on Ted Cruz and others like him. There is an all-out effort within the Republican Party, within the Republican establishment to deal with Ted Cruz and his attempted takeover of the Republican Party. On The NewsHour on Friday night on PBS, David Brooks, the supposed conservative columnist for the New York Times, warned that Ted Cruz and similar legislators' rise to prominence threatens the traditional Republican Party.
Brooks insists that Ted Cruz's motives are less about legislation and policy and more about the politics of undermining the Republican Party establishment. Brooks considers himself to be a ranking member of the Republican establishment. He says you people are being fooled by Cruz. Cruz doesn't really care about you and legislation and policy. He's trying to undermine the Republican establishment.
Let's go to the audio sound bites. This is Brooks on The NewsHour on PBS Friday night talking to Judy Woodruff.
BROOKS: What's going on in the House and a bit in the Senate, too, is what you might call the rise of Ted Cruzism, and Ted Cruz, the senator from Canada through Texas is basically not a legislator in the normal sense, does not have an idea that he's going to the Congress to create coalitions, make alliances, and pass a lot of legislation. He's going in more as a media-protest person, and a lot of the House Republicans are in the same mode. They're not normal members of Congress. They're not legislators. They want to stop things, and so they're just being... They just want to obstruct.
RUSH: Can you believe this? What in the hell are they supposed to do, Mr. Brooks? This is what every one of you ought to be doing. Why do you call yourself a Republican if all you want to do is lay down and agree with Obama and the Democrats? Why don't you switch parties if it's so much better over there? What in the world is he supposed to do? He was sent there to stop this. He was sent to Washington specifically to try to stop some of this.
The popular assumption, Mr. Brooks, among most Republican voters, is that's what the Republican Party at large is supposed to be doing right now! Yet here's Brooks -- and by the way, he's speaking for a lot of the Republican establishment when he says these things. "Oh, my God, they're trying to actually oppose this! They're just trying to obstruct. They're just trying to stop things. They're not normal members of Congress. They're not legislators."
What the hell is a "normal" Republican, Mr. Brooks, one that bends over and agrees whatever the Democrats want? Makes compromises? Gets along, goes along? What is a "normal" Republican? I guess we know. So Ted Cruz is to be taken out and destroyed because he wants to stop this? I think the vast majority of the American people want Obamacare stopped, Mr. Brooks. The latest numbers from the NBC/Wall Street Journal poll: Only 12% of the American people think it's gonna do 'em any good.
Seventy-eight percent, simple math, don't want this, Mr. Brooks. So Cruz isn't a good legislator. He does not compromise what he believes. He doesn't compromise his core beliefs or principles. He isn't normal. He's just a malcontent. He's really trying to get rid of the Republican Party. That's what he's really trying to do. Mr. Brooks, the Republican Party establishment needs to be undermined, if you are accurately portraying the mind-set of the Republican establishment.
It needs to be undermined.
It needs to be stopped.
There used to be things that Republicans stood for: free markets, capitalism, individual liberties, limited government. What happened to all that, Mr. Brooks? That's what Cruz believes in, and millions of Americans still do, too. When did this happen? When did it happen that the Republican establishment decided that their primary objective is to throw in with the Democrats, throw in with Obama? When did that happen? There's one more sound bite here. After Brooks said that Cruz is just in the Senate to obstruct legislation, he then added this.
BROOKS: And the second thing they're doing, which is alarming a lot of Republicans, is they're running against their own party. Ted Cruz is running against Republicans in the Senate. The House Republican, Tea Party types are running against the Republican establishment. That's where they're raising money, that's where they're spending money on ads, and so they're having a very obstructive role which is going on this week and I think it's gonna make John Boehner's life even more difficult.
RUSH: This is unreal. This is unbelievable, except it's all too real and believable, isn't it? I'm not sure that I heard what I just heard, even though I intellectually know that this is exactly the thinking of the Republican establishment now. "The worst thing is they're running against their own party." Well, we're running against the Washington establishment, Mr. Brooks, which, sadly, knows no party differences anymore.
The Washington establishment is all Republicans and Democrats. It doesn't matter. They just call themselves different things, but the Washington establishment apparently is all in the same game. There's no difference between you, Mr. Brooks, and a Democrat. What's the point? "Spending their money on ads... very obstructive role that's going on this week... I think it's gonna make John Boehner's life even more difficult."
What could possibly be difficult about agreeing with Obama? How hard is that? Obama says he wants this; you give it to him. The establishment triumphs! Is that how the game's played now? No, I did warn you. I have tried over the years to remind people that the Republican Party has its own problems with conservatism, not just the Democrats, and it's because conservatism is opposed to a major, big, dominant Washington establishment.
RUSH: All right. Here's Obama, and I just got through sharing with you the Republican establishment view of Ted Cruz. I just played for you the David Brooks sound bites where he says, "Cruz, he's not a legislator! Why, he's just trying to obstruct. He's just trying to stop things from happening." Well, Lord, who would want that? The American people don't want Obama! The American people, on issue by issue by issue, say no. Obama policy after Obama policy after Obama policy, are opposed by a majority of Americans.
Who in the world would want to stop it? Really. If you ever heard me say, "The Republican Party establishment wishes there were no conservatives and will do anything it could to wipe them out..." If you have and that's been a tough thing to register, this ought to be easy, to hear Brooks, 'cause he's speaking for 'em. (summarized) "Cruz and these other guys, these Tea Party Republicans, they're bad news. They're just trying to obstruct. They're trying to come up with Republicans to run against other Republicans!"
"They're not legislators. They don't want to compromise. They just want to come up here and stop things." Yeah, that's the idea. They thought, we all thought, the Republican Party was to stop the Democrats. It used to be that way. Maybe it didn't. Maybe it's been an illusion all these years. At any rate, Obama weighs in now. This is today, from the five-year anniversary of the financial meltdown and "recovery." They're celebrating it as an anniversary now because Obama's economic recovery is in full swing, and we're roaring back, folks.
That's what Obama said today, but he was not finished. There's still work to do, and he said this about Ted Cruz.
OBAMA: After all that we've been through this past five years, after all the work Americans like those standing behind me have done to come back from the depths of a crisis, are some of these folks really so beholden to one extreme wing of their party that they're willing to tank the entire economy just because they can't get their way on this issue? Are they really willing to hurt people just to score political points? I hope not. But, in case there's any confusion, I will not negotiate over whether or not America keeps its word and meets its obligations. I will not negotiate over the full faith and credit of the United States.
RUSH: He'll talk to Assad. He'll talk to the Iranians. He'll talk to Putin. He'll negotiate with any of the bad guys in the world, but he will not talk and negotiate with anybody in the Republican Party like Ted Cruz. It's Cruz that he's talking about. He's not talking about Boehner, and he's not talking about McConnell, and he's not talking about most of the other Republicans. He won't negotiate? The dirty little secret is, he never does.
He doesn't negotiate.
It's his way or the highway.
He's the extremist. He's the radical. Ted Cruz and others like him are simply trying to preserve America as founded, pure and simple. Operating on this myth that we've had this vast and sweeping economic recovery, and all anybody now wants to do is derail that and hurt people? People are hurt, people are hurting, and their futures are not getting better. They're losing their jobs.
They're losing full-time jobs and becoming part time, if they're able to keep their jobs at all -- and now they're faced with losing their health care. I listen to this, and I really almost become speechless. "Are those folks really so beholden to one extreme wing of their party, they're willing to tank the entire economy?" He's talking about continuing resolution, maybe shutting down the government here in the effort to defund Obamacare.
That's what he's referring to here. He's done a fine enough job of tanking the economy on his own. The efforts engaged by Cruz and these others are to stop any further destruction of the economy. But he doesn't negotiate. He never has. By the way, politically he doesn't have to. He's winning everything. He won the election. He's got the Senate. The Republicans cannot advance anything. All they can do is stop.
That's all that they have the power to do is to try, and they can't do it without assistance. It's amazing how the most powerless in Washington right now are being characterized as the evil bad guys. So Obama is essentially claiming here that what Ted Cruz and others like him want to do is sabotages the economy. "I can't remember..." This is what he said. "I can't remember a time when one faction of one party promises economic chaos if it can't get 100% of what it wants.
"That's never happened before."
Really? See, I seem to remember that once Democrats couldn't make us lose the war in Iraq in time for the 2006 election, they turned to talking down the economy. They've done everything they could to tank it. I remember Dick Gephardt celebrating every hundred-point loss in the stock market, thinking it equaled a new seat or two for Democrats in the House of Representatives. But I remember the Democrats talking down this economy for three years, promising a recession, forecasting a recession, predicting a recession.
Anyway, this is what we are facing and dealing with here. It ought to... Folks, I'll tell you what. It ought to make you have all that much more appreciation for Ted Cruz, because he and occasionally Rand Paul and some Tea Party Republicans in the House, they're it, and they have got the forces of the entire Washington establishment arrayed against them, and the entire Washington establishment is, as you hear, impugning their character, trying to destroy their reputations, lying about their political intentions and motivations.
The last thing Ted Cruz wants to do is hurt anybody.
The last thing Ted Cruz wants to do is tank an economy. That's happening now! People are hurting now, and they have been for five years, with no relief in sight. This is how difficult it is. You know, I think Democrats even tried to defund the military while we were fighting two wars. They threatened to do all that. Obama says he can't remember a time when one faction of one party promises chaos?
The Democrat Party gave us chaos and has sought to seek as much chaos as possible! In fact, Obama's policies require chaos in order for his policies to be passed into law, become reality. So, anyway, there's a lot to really acknowledge here in terms of Ted Cruz and this little band that he's got doing everything they can to defund Obamacare, and one last effort to keep it from being implemented.
It's a noble effort, and it happens to be an effort, whether or not they know it, that 75% of the American people support. By virtue of polling data, there is poll after poll after poll in which vast majorities of the American people say they don't want any part of this. They don't expect to be helped by it. They don't expect any benefit from it. And once it's fully implemented, there goes one-sixth of the economy. You know the drill.