RUSH: John in Frederick, Maryland, great to have you. Hello, sir.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. I'd like to take your recharacterization of the continuing resolution one step further. What we need to do is stop referring to that as the delay in the individual mandate and start referring to it as the one-year delay in the individual tax penalty. Most people don't know what the individual mandate is yet, but they understand more what an individual tax penalty is, and that's what's really being delayed.
RUSH: Well, you know, I understand that we're always looking for ways to communicate the truth to people, what's really about to happen to them. You've got a good idea, but who's gonna do it?
CALLER: The House should be doing that because the Affordable Care Act is nothing but a tax according to the Supreme Court, and they should just be talking about this as stopping the individual tax penalty, especially because individuals will now have to buy their own insurance since their employers, who had to provide it, will not necessarily be providing it 'cause the employers have a one-year delay on having to provide it. So it's fundamentally unfair to require individuals to pay the penalty that would have otherwise gone to their employers had they not gotten a delay.
RUSH: Well, you have a point about one thing. I think the Republicans do make the mistake, and a lot of people that live and work in this whole political arena, they talk about things with the assumption that people know what it is they're talking about. Individual mandate is the example. It's pretty self-explanatory, but out of context, the low-information crowd may not even know what it is nor care. So your idea is don't call it the individual mandate, call it the individual tax.
CALLER: The individual tax penalty is being delayed one year, yes, exactly.
RUSH: Right. Well, if any of 'em are listening, they might have heard it, maybe they'll do it.
CALLER: Okay, great. Great to talk with you, Rush.
RUSH: Thank you, John. I appreciate it.
Dean in Powell, Michigan. Great to have you. Hi.
CALLER: Hi. Yeah. If the thing was turned around the Democrats would be parading an endless stream of people that have been hurt by it. Why don't we do that? Why don't the Republicans put out there people that have lost their house and lost their health insurance? I've been listening to talk radio for years, and on other radio talk shows I hear people calling in -- one guy called in Friday who said that his insurance company called him up; he had been paying $300 for a policy that covered him the way he wanted; they informed him that it was gonna be over $900 to keep his policy because of Obamacare. Another guy called in, said he lost his job because his company was downsizing so they weren't affected by Obamacare. He was two months from losing his house at that point. At this point, he probably already lost his house. Put a face on it, show what Obamacare's done to people in companies that have been proactive in getting ready for this and show that this is gonna happen to the rest of the country.
RUSH: You know, the Democrats make a habit of doing that. It is part and parlance of their policy. They constantly have this endless parade of victims of Republican policy. Any time the budget's cut, proposed to be cut, they bring up all of these people that are gonna lose everything if it happens. The Republicans don't. We can sit here all day, and we do, and give advice on what the Republicans should do and things that they could do. I don't think that they haven't thought of this. I'm sure that some of them have. I can't explain to you why they don't. I could only hazard guesses, and the best guess would be that they're excuse or their reason for not doing it is, nobody will cover it.
And I'm telling you, don't laugh. That is what a good majority of them believe about any strategy that they might conceive, that it'll occur in a vacuum, that the media won't cover it, and nobody will ever see it, and so there's no point. I can't tell you the number of times I've heard that, that excuse. Same thing with presenting alternative ideas. "Well, nobody's gonna cover it. They're not gonna give us a fair shake on it," and so forth. There's a built-in, beaten-down characteristic that right now defines the Republican Party.
Whatever they do, they don't think anybody's ever gonna hear about it honestly. They have an endless parade of victims up there. What they're afraid of is that the media will mock it, make fun of it, and try to say that the people were paid to say what they said. They'll delegitimize it somehow. Some of them say, "Why should we just do everything the Democrats do," and so forth, "we need to come up with different ways. We'll just have to wait and see how this plays out."
Now, folks, correct me if I'm wrong on something here. When I first heard about this, the Republicans essentially forcing the shut down, the first thought I had was, well, some people are gonna be happy now. The Republicans are at least standing up. They're not just bending over, letting it happen. And I haven't heard that. Despite the Republicans doing this, people are still mad at 'em, still ticked, still critical, not doing enough. Some people have e-mailed and said, "To hell with this delay, Rush. Why not just go for the full defund?" Well, they tried. Cruz and the boys tried. This was the best that the House could come up with. But even activists on our side -- I hear from everybody, folks. I mean, more than I care to, and it's amazing the amount of criticism that I get and I hear.
"You need to tell 'em and you need to say this. You need call 'em up and you need to say..." It's gotten to the point the Republicans can't make anybody happy very many times with whatever they do, it seems. I know why. I'm just sharing with you the reaction. I was curious. When I heard about this Saturday afternoon, Saturday night, I was curious what Republican voters' reaction would be. It's still populated, filled with a lot of criticism.
RUSH: Let me ask you a question. Would you go on television as part of this Republican strategy to parade Obamacare victims, would you go on TV and tell your story of how Obamacare has caused you great strife and harm and distress and all that? I don't think there are a whole lot of people that would. They remember what happened to Joe the Plumber. They know what the media would do to 'em. The media would give 'em an anal exam. The media would start looking at, "Who are these people lying about what Obamacare's done to 'em?" They would start destroying their reputations and embarrassing their families and so forth.
People are cowed, I think, into doing this kind of thing. Just my wild guess, that's not such a wild guess. I mean, I know a lot of people that wouldn't do it 'cause they remember what happened to Joe the Plumber. Joe the Plumber just asked Obama a question, and the state of Ohio mobilized to destroy him.
I'll tell you what's going on with this. What this is all about, from the perspective of Harry Reid and even some Republicans, is destroying the Tea Party. This is about breaking the back of Tea Party influence on the Republican Party. That's what all this is about. Let me give you a little news here, folks. In a straight party-line vote all 54 members of the Senate Democrat caucus voted to reject the House-passed amendments to the funding bill. That is, they rejected the delay of the individual mandate, individual tax, as the caller said, and the removal of the medical device tax.
Predictable. Dingy Harry said that was gonna happen. Ted Cruz has issued a statement about the vote. Ted Cruz said this very interesting point. "Harry Reid wants a shutdown, because, sadly, Democrats are putting politics above the needs of the American people."
And the New York Times explained why. Because, as the Democrats believe, now is the time to break the power of Tea Party Republicans. I think that's what this whole shutdown is about. I think what's happening here, I think the Democrats are hoping to accomplish what they wanted the sequester to accomplish, but didn't.
If you remember, the Democrats thought the sequester would turn the American people against the Republicans forever because it was shutting down the military and shutting down Medicaid, Medicare, shutting down various important government functions, and it's turned out that the sequester is painless. And so the Democrats want a do-over, and that's what all of this is. They want the pain, and they want it blamed on Tea Party Republicans. And I'm told the Republican conference is meeting now, you know, Boehner and the boys are telling the caucus what's up, and a number of different Republicans have their turn at the microphone.
Peter King has just been trashing Ted Cruz in the Republican conference. So there is an effort ongoing to break the back of Tea Party Republican influence on the Republican Party, which they can't do. I mean, the Tea Party's you and me, and I don't care what they do, they are not going to wipe us out. But they're trying to do so within the House Republican caucus or conference.
RUSH: I tell you, if the GOP tries to break the Tea Party, they're only going to end up breaking themselves, and that appears to be what they really want to do.
By the way, Jay Carney, here's a big shock, White House press secretary just said that seniors, women and children hardest hit by government shutdown. Yep. Just left out minorities. That's the only thing he left out.