RUSH: So the Republicans had a -- well, I don't know what you would call it. A press conference. I guess it was 'cause they took questions, a little press conference out there, and Republican leaders, John Boehner and some of the caucus bigwigs went out there and they announced the latest strategery.
Now, you know, folks, for those of you who have listened to this program for any length of time at all, you know that there is an ongoing effort here to be optimistic and happy, content, what have you. There's enough negativism and pessimism out there to swamp everybody, and there's more than usual lately. And, if you're like me, you have to actively fight it in order to avoid being swept up by it.
You know, as a powerful, influential member of the media, just to give you an example, I can't tell you the number of people who send me e-mails telling me what they think about things, because they, as does everybody else, want to impress me. I mean, it's just a fact of life. And I can't tell you how negative it all is. People go out and they find stories in the media and put the most negative spin to it.
My point is that there is a profound pessimism out there always. It seems to be the natural human predisposition. Optimism takes effort. It's why people have gotten rich writing books about how to do it. My old adage: You go to the library, you won't find a book on how to fail. Everybody knows that. But books on how to succeed earn millions of dollars for their authors. Norman Vincent Peale, The Power of Positive Thinking, great example.
At any rate, I'm swamped by it, and I'm sure you are. If you watch Beltway news -- sorry. It's not news. See, I'm even contradicting myself. It's the daily narrative, but it isn't news anymore. If you watch cable news coverage of Washington, you can't help but be swept up by pessimism. So this is something that I actively try to counter each and every day, but at the same time you can't be phony positive 'cause people see right through that. So it is a delicate balance.
Now, I'm leading up to something with all this. I'm not just, as my dad used to say, talking to hear my head rattle. Because I have been noticing something in the conservative commentariat, in the DC coverage, and it has me quite frosted. But then again I can't come here and fully express the outrage I feel because that would just lead to more pessimism, and that's not good. So it is a delicate balance.
Now, it all starts with that little Republican presser today. Boehner went out there -- now, I am told that Boehner said -- in fact, let me actually scroll to it. 'Cause I didn't hear this. Did you watch the whole thing? I'm told that Boehner, among other things, said, "If ands or buts were candy and nuts, then every day would be Christmas." But, of course, ands and buts aren't candy and nuts and every day isn't Christmas and somehow that relates to negotiations with Obama. Now, the Republicans announced a strategery, and it is not what I thought they were gonna do.
Monday or Tuesday word leaked that what Boehner is gonna do was propose a short-term expansion of the debt limit not tied to any defund Obamacare effort, which I like. I don't like linking these two because there's lots of ground being gained on the defund Obamacare, and that's ultimately where I'm leading here, so if you just stick with me on this. There's lots of ground being gained, but I fear that we are getting ready to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory here. I really don't want to be pessimistic, but I've gotta be honest here. That's the coin of the realm on this program is honesty, mine with you.
Then when I first heard -- it was either Monday or Tuesday -- that there was gonna be a separate proposal sent up to Obama and over to the Senate to expand the debt limit for a month or two, almost within hours, another story said that wasn't gonna happen. That Boehner had decided against doing that, pulled it back, and they were going to unify Obamacare defund effort, the defund or delay with whatever they were gonna do on the debt limit increase, and they were then gonna link them again. Aw, jeez, they had it right the first time; now they're pulling it back. And that's where it left. I thought that's where it ended.
Then today they go out there and do this presser, and they're back to the original proposal I first heard about on Monday. "House Republican leaders are pushing a six-week increase in the debt limit, without any conservative strings attached, to calm jittery financial markets, according to senior GOP advisers. The plan was presented to the House GOP caucus Thursday morning after Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warned lawmakers that he would be unable to guarantee payments to any group -- whether Social Security recipients or US bondholders --" which is a crock "-- unless Congress raises the federal debt ceiling."
So the Democrats are throwing every scare tactic card out there, and the Republicans are acting as predictable. And then, not that this matters to anything, or maybe it does, then a parade of Republicans strode to the microphone and expressed their joy at having been invited to the White House today to meet with the president. Talked about ands and buts and candy and nuts. They were happy. This is the kind of thing that's needed, they said, to get the negotiations off the dime, it's good, felt proud. I don't know if they said "honored," but they were feeling good that Obama has invited 'em to the White House to discuss this. I guess from their perspective it represents a bit of an Obama -- not a cave, but maybe they're looking at it as a moral victory. I don't know.
Now, this takes me to what I have been hearing in the conservative commentariat in the DC coverage. This is what frosts me. This is where I've gotta be careful in sounding too mad. At times it's unproductive. But I've heard it a lot of times now, predominantly on Fox, and it coalesced for me last night with Lou Dobbs said. The conservative commentariat is now claiming that the Mike Lee and Ted Cruz defund strategy was delusional.
It was pointless and it was dangerous, risky, and unnecessary. It was rank amateurish. It was not mature. It was dangerous. It was all of these things. Then they follow that by claiming that the strategy they like, which is the piecemeal -- send a bill up to fund the NIH, send a bill up to fund the veterans, send a bill up to fund highways, whatever. That piecemeal strategy, small spending bills that illustrate the mean-spirited of President Obama, that's brilliant. That is really shrewd.
That was so crafty and that represents turning the tables on Obama, and they're saying that that is what has led to Obama being at 37% approval. What makes me frustrated about this is that this piecemeal... None of this would be happening if it hadn't been for the defund and delay strategy of Cruz and Lee and the people who joined them. So the point is that the establishment is still hell-bent on demolishing and discrediting the Tea Party and the Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and whoever else was involved coalition.
Because what they did... This ongoing effort to defund or to delay is what has exposed Obama. That's what's created this groundswell of public opinion opposed to Obama. That's why Obama's at 37%. But the conservative commentariat, the establishment Republicans, say, "Oh, no, no! That was childish, that was immature, that was risky. That was just risky." But, I tell you what: They come around and say, "This piecemeal business -- fund this and fund that -- that's brilliant. That's brilliant."
They claim that was just sheer luck that just fell into everybody's lap. I'll tell you, we talk about oftentimes credit and the Reagan quote. He didn't care who got credit as long as the job got done, but in this case, there wouldn't have been time -- there wouldn't have been even the thought process -- to piecemeal, send little, small funding bills up to Obama if the defund and delay Obama strategy had not been implemented -- and to a certain degree, at least, successfully implemented.
Without that... Can we be honest here? If Ted Cruz and Mike Lee hadn't done that, you know where we'd be right now? The Republicans would have long ago caved. We would have Obama fully implemented. We'd have the debt limit raised. It would have been a grand-slam, slam-dunk win for Obama and the Democrats. Obamacare would have been not opposed, if it weren't for Lee and Cruz. There wouldn't be any of this that's going on now if it weren't for that.
But the conservative commentariat is saying, "Aw, that's irrelevant. In fact, that was rank amateurish. I mean, that was really dangerous. That was delusional and it was pointless." I don't know if you've picked up the same thing as you've listened to the commentary. Maybe I'm a bit too sensitive to this. But to me, again, it's not about credit. It's about the end result. It's about substance here. So now there are rumors, and I'm not even comfortable passing the rumors along.
There are rumors that the Republicans are getting ready to cave on everything after they've presented their piecemeal thing here on the debt limit. They're ready to just walk away from everything now, and I don't know why. I don't know what the thinking is. But the bottom line is that whatever's happening now that's good has nothing to do with Cruz. It has nothing to do with Mike Lee. It has nothing to do with the delay or defund Obama effort.
All the great things happening now -- the piecemeal, Obama's plunging approval rating, the Democrats saying outrageous things and then having to apologize, all of that -- happened because of the brilliant thinking of the establishment types. It's just not the case. It just isn't true. I can't pretend to tell you where all this is going and where it's headed, but the bottom line is, you have something here that's good that's happened, and the whole party still can't get behind it.
There's still division. They're still playing games over who gets credit for doing what, and, "We can't let the Tea Party guys have any credit, and we certainly can't let the freshmen have any credit." They continue to portray these people as reckless amateurs who almost brought down the government, but were saved by the mature establishment types who know what they are doing.
RUSH: The Boehner quote, it turns out to be accurate. He was answering a question. "If ands or buts were candy and nuts, every day would be Christmas." The point is, every day Washington is Christmas, and that's the way Washington is viewed by way too many people. Here's the thing that really irritates me, folks. If it hadn't been for Ted Cruz and Mike Lee -- and I don't mean to be leaving anybody else out who joined them. If it hadn't been for their effort to even bring up the concept of defunding Obamacare...
Not delaying it. They were specific on defunding it. There was another group that was even arguing with them, and that was the delay Obamacare group. I mean, we weren't even unified on the approach. But nevertheless, that's a minor point. If it hadn't been for Cruz and Lee, we wouldn't be having this conversation about Obamacare or entitlement spending or the debt or the debt limit. We wouldn't see Obama's approval ratings plunging. We wouldn't be as focused on the failure of the Obamacare website as we are,I guarantee you. It's all combined here.
If Lee and Cruz had not done this, Obamacare would be fully funded, the debt limit would have been increased, and whatever was happening at the exchanges would be a well-kept secret. But because Lee and Cruz insisted on this, the Democrats were exposed. Harry Reid: Why should I care about kids with cancer? Obama opening the National Mall for illegal aliens and keeping it closed to World War II vets. People ask whether the conversation is good for the country or not. Of course it is. Here's the thing, folks -- and this is something else I want to reiterate.
What the people inside the Beltway do not understand is that outside the Beltway, this is not just the Republicans versus Obama.
That's not how the people view it.
This is the country opposed to Washington.
This is the country rising up. Look at the polling data on Obamacare. Massive numbers of people do not want it. Washington is enforcing it. Washington is forcing it on people. We have news about the IRS now. It wasn't just two rogue employees in Cincinnati. IRS officials were called into the White House to share information with high officials there -- and out beyond the Beltway, a near majority of people have had it. They're fed up.
I said yesterday, "I don't think Washington, I don't think Obama, I don't think even the Republicans understand how livid people were when they found out that the National Mall was closed to United States citizens or World War II vets -- and opened up to illegal aliens in the hundreds of thousands to demand amnesty," and that's just a microcosm. There is a lot of anger in the country over what is happening in Washington, and the Republicans are not the beneficiaries of it, as they think, because it's not seen as the Republicans trying to save the country.
They're not seen that way, sadly.
So this is Washington versus the country.
That's how people outside the Beltway see this.