RUSH: Bill in Sacramento, my adopted hometown. Welcome, sir.
CALLER: Hey, Rush.
CALLER: Okay. I could feel it. The Bushes are doing it to us again. I’m going to see a Souter II coming on and we are all going to be told, “She is a conservative,” and, “Don’t worry guys. She’s going to be great. She is a conservative. You’re going to love her,” and she’s going to be another Souter.
RUSH: Are you talking about Edith Clement?
CALLER: Exactly. I mean, I just… I just feel Bush is not. (sigh) Again he’s doing it to us like his father did where they just don’t have enough trust to —
RUSH: Why do you — Wait a minute. Hold it a second. Wait, wait. One question.
CALLER: Go for it.
RUSH: It may well be the case, but how do you know it? Why do you think you know it now?
CALLER: You know why, Rush? Because in the last year sine he was elected to a second term — and I’m a big conservative Republican here — I can feel the weakness coming on. I can feel the Bushes collapsing. They want love from the media.
RUSH: Gosh, it’s amazing.
CALLER: They want to be loved, Rush — and it’s getting me very nervous.
RUSH: Bill, I totally understand that let me first say, because I hear this, I can’t tell you how often. There is a palpable fear because this is what the election was about, folks. Make no mistake about it. As far as the base of the Republican Party was concerned, this is what the election was about — and there are a lot of people who are obsessed — I should say who possess a pessimism on this that I have noticed — and, it is; it is logically based. I can’t say that it isn’t, and the pessimism comes from wanting to get along with the Clintons now. You know, wanting to let Ted Kennedy write the Education Bill and so, I understand that. But at this point, I’m not going to join this chorus right now, if you will, because I simply don’t know enough about this judge. Here is what I found out. I will just tell you what I’ve found out, and I’ve been working on this a lot in the morning here, prior to the program starting — and I’ve even gotten some e-mails today in reaction to some of the comments I made in the opening segment of this program about this — and, many conservatives are telling me that she is fine; she is excellent. People that know her and her family from Louisiana say she is excellent. She is perfect. She is what the doctor ordered. Of course, you have you to take that with some reservation because if they are friends, of course they are going to say this. There are other people who are worried that there is no record, no sufficient record to track and I’ve had people say to me, “Rush, now, wait a minute. We’re not going to get another Anthony Kennedy. I’m not going to put up another Anthony Kennedy,” or as you say, Souter.
Kennedy as you know was the replacement for Bork. He came out of Sacramento, by the way. I knew of him while he was in California. He had a reputation as an originalist and a conservative — and we see what happened. Bill, let me go on an assumption here just to make a point. I’m going to assume the woman is fine for the sake of this little example I want to give you. I’m going to judge that this woman would be a great addition to the court. Even at that, there is something that happens when all of these people get there — and that is, they live and work in Washington, D.C wherein there is a culture. There is a culture that is dominated by the left, the media culture, the social structure and culture is dominated by the left — and, all of these judges that end up on the Supreme Court (this is an understandable aspect of human nature) cannot help but think of themselves as having reached the pinnacle of their profession. There is no higher court, no higher honor, no higher position that one could attain in terms of stature. You can certainly earn more money doing other things like suing the manufacturers of Vioxx or something, but you will not reach any higher stature than being on the Supreme Court. But when you get there — and we’ve seen this; you get there — and you start writing your opinions, and if the Washington Post and New York Times don’t like them, they come after you. They come after how you are destroying the history of the court, and they come after you talking about how you are “destroying civil rights” and you want to “turn back the hands of the clock” on freedom and civil rights and all of these other garbage issues — and that, I have seen it work. I have seen it effect them.
I think — just my personal opinion, I think — that Justice Kennedy’s big transformation was after Florida 2000 when the DC culture, essentially wrote that the Supreme Court caved and violated the Constitution and selected a president, and these guys have their legacy, too. These people on the Supreme Court worry about their legacies. Everyone knows who Supreme Court justices are. Their opinions live forever, and they care about their own legacy and its immortality. So I think there is a greater harm of getting just the right person and having that person buckle than there is of getting the wrong person, or at least an equal chance. Now, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia have remained rock solid. I’ve talked to Justice Scalia on the phone twice. Both times I’ve told him: If I didn’t have my own brain I would want his. Justice Thomas is personal friend of mine, and I can assuredly say that Justice Thomas isn’t going to buckle, not after what he was put through and not after who I know him as a man to be. I know his core. I know he is an originalist. I know that he is a man who is unaffected by what others think of him. That is what we need more of throughout the society: in your neighborhood, in your office, in the Supreme Court, wherever. We need as many people who couldn’t care less of what people think of them, because when you are governed by what people think of you, you are going change who you are to please them — and when the people judging you in Washington are the leaders of the liberal culture there, what do you have to do to please them?
And so, Justice Kennedy who was part of the majority in the Bush v. Gore Florida 2000 case came under some really big fire from the media and the culture in Washington — and, as such, he has, if you look at his decisions and his opinions lately, they are being praised by that very culture — and his role, whatever it was, in Florida 2000 has been relegated now to not as prominent as status as it was. Now, back to Edith Clem-mont or Clem-ent. Is it Clem-mont? I haven’t heard her name pronounced. Is it Clement? Because I’ve heard it both ways now. So it is Clement? All right. You’ll have to forgive me on that folks. I read closed captioning on the television rather than listen to it, even at home. I love the quietness and the noise is just a racket to me unless it is a perfectly made room with just the right kind of absorbent acoustics where there is reverb and echo going around. So forgive me if I mispronounce some names. It’s only because I haven’t heard them. But she, from what people who are on her side say, I’m letting you know: She’s fine. She is good. But, there are still these fears that Bush wants to avoid a fight. Some people think Bush is going to pick somebody less-than perfect just because of the Rove business — and I frankly don’t think that’s the case, because I think they know that they are going to go after Rove no matter what happens tonight with the Supreme Court announcement. Rove is not going to be taken off the front pages very long. They’ll make room for Rove on the front page because their reputation is tied up in that story. Make no mistake about it. So Rove isn’t going anywhere, and they know this. (interruption) No. Rove, they may put him in the Sunday pullout section but he’ll be there. Don’t worry about that. I don’t think that is the case, and I understand the pessimism. I understand the fear that goes along with this. But the president has kept asserting through all of this that he is not going to do anything other than what he said in the campaign — and I think that you should also note that Gonzales is not part of the equation. Remember the left was all for Gonzales, the current attorney general? They hated him for attorney general. He was writing torture memos! But boy he’d be perfect on Supreme Court! Another disconnect when it comes to principles and consistency with the left. But nevertheless, conservatives said, “No, no, not Mr. President. Not Mr. Gonzales,” and Gonzales isn’t there. Even though the president slapped down for saying it, he is not there. So there are hopeful signs to look at in this case — and, look, it may not even be her. This could be a big PR feint. I don’t know. It likely is, but we will not know until 9 o’clock tonight. I wouldn’t go off the deep end assuming that whoever he appoints is going to fail. That kind of pessimism is not going to do your health any good. It’s not your attitude any good and it’s not going to do what needs to be done overall here any good to have that pessimistic attitude going in.