Even Ramesh Ponnuru at National Review Online has a little blurb in a magazine story about this whole thing. One of the mistakes we made back in 1994 after the election in which we took control of the House of representatives, was that we made the assumption that the country’s finally learned what we stand for and agreed with it and we stopped teaching. We just made some assumptions that the country’s moving our direction; it’s time to start implementing, as best we could. We didn’t have the White House but we did have the House of Representatives, and they still, back in 1994, were able to demonize these new arrivals in the House, particularly Newt Gingrich, and the assumption that we had crossed a threshold, so to speak, I think eliminated from our arsenal the weapon of teaching and information, continuing education and I think something that needs to happen now, not only with the president’s agenda but throughout this country, you can say there was a Republican realignment that took place in this election, what with only four Democrat senators from the south now. You can say that a party realignment has taken place geographically, but it’s time to pour on the conservative agenda things now.
It’s time, because we have so many people in this country who live their lives as conservatives, but some still don’t vote that way because of the way they were raised, because of their fear of the clich?s and stereotypes that the left has successfully attached to conservatism, that now’s the time to fulfill this opportunity here of a full-fledged realignment. Because it’s just waiting to take place, and I think the New York Times and others in the media quite well understand the threat that they face. Now, hence, this silly poll and story: “Americans Show Clear Concerns on Bush Agenda,” as they indicate a desire here and actually implement a desire to try to stand in the way of Bush’s mandate by suggesting he really doesn’t have one. Next to come are — I’m going to predict this — next to come will be stories in the New York Times, the Washington Post. It will happen in a month or two, maybe not that long, but certainly that period of time: “Voters Surprised at Bush Agenda. Voters surprised at Bush doing what he’s doing.” You’re going to see stories: “Sticker shock!” People saying, “I would have never voted for this guy if I’d known this is what he was going to do. Why, I can’t believe the mistake I made!”
You’re going to see legions of stories like that. I want I just want to prepare you in advance for it now. Ladies and gentlemen, it won’t be long. (program observer interruption) What, you think it will happen tomorrow? You could say that this New York Times story today is actually that, or maybe the forerunner, but it’s going to happen, folks. “Sticker shock! Voters unprepared for what they actually got, wishing that they could cast their vote again, regretting their vote for Bush,” blah, blah, blah, blah. Ignore it. It’s just another feeble attempt. In the meantime, it’s almost advisable here — I mean, you can’t pretend that we didn’t win, but certainly do not think any anything’s over. Do not think… I mean, you could say that in a 16-game football season. You could say right now we’re six and one, but we’re nowhere near the Super Bowl. We got to keep winning every week. That means we got to keep the game plan. We got to keep advancing our agenda. We have to realize that convincing people is one thing, but keeping them convinced is another. It is a daily, daily project.
I want to go back to this New York Times story, because this is a forerunner of what’s to come. The forerunner of what’s to come is: “Bush voters shocked, surprised, wish they could vote again. Bush voters regret their vote.” That’s what this story, based on a poll at the New York Times sets up. “Americans Show Clear Concerns on Bush Agenda.” Do you know what? If you go look, I’ll tell you how hard they had to dig to get these numbers in this poll. The methodology and the respondent pool is in a jump story, and they didn’t even talk to “likely voters.” They didn’t a talk to “registered voters.” They went out and “sampled adults.” We don’t even know how many of the people in the New York Times poll actually voted or have ever voted. It’s adults. It’s a sample that is never used for a legitimate political poll. “Americans Show…” I’m sure the headline, “Well, Rush we’re not talking about voters here. We’re talking about Americans.”
Well, you know, once your sample is Americans, you can keep talking to them until you get people who say what you want to hear. If you’re going to go out and talk to likely voters, the odds are that you’re going to have a minority of them who are going to share concerns on the Bush agenda. Bush ran on an agenda. People that voted for Bush knew exactly what he was going to do. That’s why he has a mandate, even if he had won by 200 votes. So, a little paragraph here from the story: “Seventy percent of Mr. Kerry’s supporters said they were more worried about candidates who were too close to religion and religious leaders than about a political leader who doesn’t pay enough attention to religion.” So they’re setting it all up. They’re going back to their age-old agenda. They’re still going back to this red state/blue state divide. They’re afraid of the red states. Everybody in a red state is a holy roller, you know, the hick hayseed with a gunrack in the back of the pickup. They continue to try to paint this picture. As long as they want to look at a distorted reality of this country, they’re going to be in a minority. Hubba hubba.
I want to stick with this New York Times story only because there’s one more thing to bounce off of that if you’re just joining us, the Times has a just hilarious, almost parody-like headline today: “Americans Show Clear Concern on Bush Agenda ? Seventy percent of John Kerry voters are worried about religious politicians.” Can I ask you a question? Who used religion more between George W. Bush and Bill Clinton? Who used religion more? Clinton did. Clinton was always carrying the Bible around with him on Sundays. He would go into black churches. He was “the first black president.” He was constantly quoting from the Bible and so forth. He used it whenever a photo op suited him. You could say that Clinton had his way with religion and that’s okay to people on the left. What’s not okay is believing it. You can go ahead and use religion all you want, but believing it? That’s when the left has trouble with you. Oh, how about after the Monica thing. He had a whole bunch of preachers up there in the White House as his counselors, and talked him through this and helped him through this period of great stress and trauma between he and his family and his wife and so forth and the American people.
He repaired the breach, he said, at the prayer breakfast. I mean, it’s just classic — and John Kerry himself during the campaign, in the last week, talked about how he would take the Bible in the Oval Office with him and his faith would be part of his job. So, you know, it’s one thing. It’s like I’ve said: They say things when they think it’s opportune but believing these things, “Oh, no, no, no, no!” and it’s the belief in these things that sends them for loops. Again, it was adults in the New York Times survey. It was not registered voters, not likely voters, just “adults,” and at the other end of the scale, Fox, they did a poll and they asked this question: “During President Bush’s second term, do you think he should (a) focus on fulfilling the promises he made, also work on the promises John Kerry made, or not sure?” Here are the corresponding numbers: 52% said that Bush should focus on fulfilling the promises he made; 35% said also work on the promises John Kerry made. Now, Bush obviously has a commitment here to try to implement the policies that he ran on. Those are what elections are supposed to be about. Elections are about issues, and Bush ran on a slew of issues. The New York Times own poll here shows that by a 56/39% margin, the public is generally optimistic about the next four years with Bush as president, which no doubt angers the people on west 43rd street to no end where the New York Times is. So in their own poll, 56 to 39, the public generally optimistic about the next four years. “Americans Show Clear Concerns on Bush Agenda.” Same story in The New York Times. Just depends on how deep you read and how far you go.