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How Donald Trump Plays the Media


RUSH: Some days they just tee me up. Some days are just too easy. Question: Has Loretta Lynch arrested Trump yet? Well, isn't that the kind of stuff she said she's gonna start arresting people for? Why hasn't he been arrested? Greetings, my friends. Welcome. Rush Limbaugh, EIB Network. Great to have you here. Telephone number, if you want to be on the program today, 800-282-2882. E-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.

Everybody, everybody -- now Paul Ryan has joined in -- everybody condemning Donald Trump. The conventional wisdom is that Donald Trump's insane, he's a lunatic, crazy. This is dangerous. This is bad. It's un-American. It's unacceptable. He's gotta go.

Except he's leading. A big problem. Even Dingy Harry -- and, by the way, for all of you Republicans getting on this gravy train condemning Trump, I want to show you what good it's doing you. Dingy Harry: "Donald Trump is standing on the platform of hate, and, I'm sorry to say, hate that the Republican Party has built for him."

You Republicans, you can denounce Trump all day, all week, all month, and the Democrat Party and the media are still gonna say you laid the table for it. You can condemn Trump all you want, but it is not going to buy you any love or respect or admiration from the Drive-By Media and the Democrats. Now, folks, the conventional wisdom is that Trump is scum, that Trump is a reprobate, that Trump is dangerous, that Trump is obscene, Trump's insane, Trump's a lunatic, Trump's dangerous, Trump's got to go. Why join in with that phrase? Why join that crowd? We never fall in with conventional wisdom here.

I want to look at this in a little different way, as I'm wont to do, and I want to look at the politics of this. And I want to remind you late last week, middle part of last week and end of late last week, I started what I intended to be a pretty in-depth discussion of how it is that Donald Trump owns the media. I made the point to you last week that that is the one factor that has upset everything else in this presidential campaign, despite what you might think about the Republican Party being the opposition party to the Democrats, the Democrats being the opposition to the Republicans.

Inside the Beltway, the Washington establishment, the establishment is aligned and unified on a number of things, Republicans and Democrats alike. And one of those things on which they're aligned is that the Drive-By Media is an acceptable, coequal branch of what they do. They accept the media as, for lack of a better term, the great equalizer. The media is always the institution that makes or breaks people. If the media wants to make somebody, they can, and it's allowed. If the media wants to take somebody out, it's allowed, and they try and oftentimes get away with it.

You do not hear the Republican Party condemning the media much. And the reason for this is that inside the Beltway within the Washington establishment, the elite, the ruling class, whatever you want to call it, the media is a coequal member. And members of the media are coequal. That fact and the fact that Trump now owns the media -- and this episode is just more proof of it -- is one aspect that has everything else in this campaign turned upside down. The great equalizer, the media, the great level, the media, the institution relied on to keep things within the guardrails, as the establishment wants it, can't do it. And that's why there's panic, and that's why there's outrage, and that's why there is anger.

Evidence of what I'm saying is found here in the Washington Post: "Donald Trump Has Gotten More Nightly Network News Coverage Than the Entire Democratic Field Combined." Let me repeat that you to. "According to the Tyndall Report, which tracks the airtime that the various flagship news programs on NBC, CBS and ABC dedicate to a variety of stories, the 2016 election has received 857 minutes of combined coverage, through Nov. 30. With a month to go, that's already the second biggest total of any pre-election year in the last seven presidential cycles."

Donald Trump, Republican front-runner Donald Trump is the most covered candidate in the race. In fact, Donald Trump alone has gotten more airtime -- 234 minutes out of the 857 minutes are Trump's -- he has gotten more airtime than the entire Democrat field, the chosen field of the media. Trump has gotten more time combined than all the Democrats in the race. Hillary Clinton is the second most covered candidate at 113 minutes. Trump is twice the coverage that Hillary has gotten. Why? Why is Trump still in the race? This is not the first outrageous thing he said, by far. It's not even the most outrageous thing he said, depending on who you ask.

Why is Donald Trump still a candidate? Why hasn't anybody been able to force him out? Why hasn't anybody been able to humiliate him? Why hasn't anybody been able to destroy him? Why hasn't anybody -- and by anybody, I mean, the media, 'cause that's who both parties rely on to do this. Why can't the media touch the guy? He's given them all kinds of ammo. If anybody else says what Trump says, and they're history, they're shamed, they're humiliated, they are forever forgotten, and they have gotten so low they could never recover from it.

Trump is leading the Republican presidential primary. Why can't they touch him? Why do they keep covering him? Why don't they just ignore him? They can't. And that and therein lies something fascinating. Trump has direct access to his voters, his supporters, the American people. Trump has direct access to people around the world. I've got the Trump Stack of Outrage today. It's comical. It's predictable. It's sameness. Even I, El Rushbo, am blamed for it on t
he BBC, if you can believe that. Yeah. I'm responsible. You know why? Because I have been saying this kind of thing 25 years or more. Trump is just picking up where I left off, according to the BBC.

Meanwhile, I've never said anything like anything Trump says. But despite it all they can't take him out. They can't stop covering him. They can't humiliate him. They can't embarrass him. They can't diminish his support. They're powerless, and this has them in a panic. The media that can make-or-break anybody cannot touch Trump, and every time they try, all they do is make him bigger. They can't explain this. They are frustrated to no end, and so are both political parties who rely on the media to be the great equalizer in all of this.

Nothing's working. No matter what Trump says, the media is there, and every member of the media is there. Every network, every camera, every microphone is there. Last Friday night Trump was in Raleigh, North Carolina. Reuters lied. Reuters even tried lying to destroy Trump. They ran a story claiming that Trump's performance and his appearance were shut down by Black Lives Matter protesters. MSNBC ran with it.

I happened to see it, a little blurb on Apple news while I was sitting at home minding my own business, bothering nobody. I said, "Wait a minute. Why isn't this all over the place? This is what everybody been dreaming of: Trump humiliated, Trump shut down, Trump forced to leave the stage. Why haven't I heard this anywhere?" The reason: It didn't happen. Reuters made it up. People who were there have now testified to what happened. They can't even get rid of Trump by making up bad stuff about him.

But what really frustrates them, is they can't get rid of Trump by simply repeating what he says. Trump has direct access. Trump did not need the media in order to be heard, in order to have his message flavored and formed for proper receipt by the audience. He has direct access. He doesn't need them. He can go right over their heads. It may be true to say that the Drive-By Media has covered politics, for better or worse, in a predominant way for years and years and years -- and that's the horse-race aspect.

Who's leading? What do the polls say? Who's losing? Who's surprised by who's winning? Who's surprised by who's losing? But it's the horse-race angle. And that's completely backfired on 'em. Their primary technique, their primary way of reporting these campaigns and thereby shaping the outcome of them is backfiring totally on them. There is a deep panic, I believe, in the Drive-By Media. Because, in their world, in their mind, they control the horse race.

They are the ones that are the greatest factor in determining how people vote or what they say in polls. And the fact that they are having absolutely zero impact on Donald Trump is blowing their minds. Donald Trump has a more loyal audience than the media has at this point, which is also what this is showing. And it is causing a lot of people in the establishment -- the elites, the ruling class, whatever you call 'em both parties, the Washington crowd.

It's causing them to come unglued and unhinged, while they think it is Trump who is unhinged and coming unglued. Now, let's look at the politics of this. Take the events of the recent past, last week, last month, last six months. And then add the presidential to those events. Those events have been dominated by Islamic terrorism and illegal immigration and the failing US economy and the absolute disaster that is Obamacare. On the Democrat side, I don't have any recognition of any of that.

And on the Republican side, after Trump's statement here, there's only one guy. I'm just addressing the politics of this, folks. Forget substance, comments, whatever. It's the politics of this. There's only one guy in all of the presidential campaign occupying the position he occupies. Everybody else sounds the same. Everybody else... I don't care if it's Hillary or if it is Carly Fiorina. I don't care if it's Bernie Sanders or if it's John Kasich. They all sound the same. What do they all do? They are condemning Donald Trump.

Donald Trump is condemning ISIS. Donald Trump is condemning illegal immigration. Donald Trump is condemning a weak, stupid United States leadership. Over here, everybody else is not. They are condemning Donald Trump. In a political sense, Donald Trump, leading the presidential campaign, is the sole occupier of his position. He has no competition for it. Just in a political sense, that's pretty brilliant positioning to me. He owns the media. They can't stop talking about him.

And what's it costing him?


He's not spending a dime.

What did we hear yesterday? The Jeb Bush super PAC, Rise to Rise or whatever it is that Murphy is running. They're preparing $75 million. To do what? Take out all the Republicans! Except Trump. They're not gonna attack Trump. I don't know if it's gonna happen, but it was a rumored strategy. Mike Murphy, well-known Republican consultant who loses more than he wins, said (summarized), "To get Jeb Bush back in the race we gotta take out every other Republican.

"So we're gonna take $75 million in our super PAC and we are going to destroy Rubio and Christie and Kasich. We're gonna destroy Fiorina. We're gonna destroy Carson. Everybody, except Trump. And when it's all over, we will have a two-man race, Jeb and Trump, and then it'll not be a contest." The theory says that when it's just Jeb and Trump, the vast majority of intelligent, reasonable, responsible Republican primary voters will choose -- dadelut dadelut dadelut -- Jeb. Now, if they try that... Big "if."

If they try that, and if they succeed, they have just destroyed, Rubio, Carson, Fiorina, the whole field. Not just for this campaign, for the future. 'Cause it's a negative campaign they're gonna run. And they're not gonna touch Trump. None of the $75 million will touch Trump. You would think all of it would be used to take out Trump. But none of it's gonna be. Why? It's not that they want the last two standing to be Jeb and Trump. It's that they know they can't.

They have listened to this program and they've heard Trump supporters call here and say, "There's nothing Trump can say that will make me abandon him." Now, about what Trump is saying, about these "outrageous, unacceptable comments for which he should be put in jail." I guess -- and again I ask -- Why is what's her name, Loretta Lynch, not pursuing him, investigating and arresting him? I mean, she just said, this is the kind of stuff, the DOJ is gonna go after people for.


largeRUSH: This latest Donald Trump episode is a glittering, glaring example of how he is playing the media like a Stradivarius. And I tell you, folks, for all of you people who have complained and whined and moaned about the media over the years, and how unfair they are to Republicans and how unfair that makes the whole process and, "What are we gonna do?" You need to be studying Donald Trump. I don't care whether you think what he says is outrageous or wrong or whatever. That's the wrong way to look at this right now.

This latest quote/unquote "outrage" from Trump is a perfect example of how he plays the media, how he knows exactly what to do and how to do it to own their attention and airtime. He says things that he knows will drive them crazy. He says things over and over that he knows will drive them insane, and then when they go insane, he doubles down on it and drives them even crazier. He also knows that his audience is in on what he is doing.

He knows that a lot of Americans agree, to a certain extent, with things that he says. He also knows he's the only one reaching those people. And then he sits back and watches (no doubt with a huge smile) the media cover what he says over and over and over and over again. Then they analyze it over and over and over, and they talk about it over and over and over again. He's confident that a lot of his voters are gonna be able to strip away the bombast and be able to get to the nuts and bolts of what he's saying, the kernel of truth of what he's saying.

In the meantime, he ends up occupying political positions exclusively that many support.



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