RUSH: I want you to hear this audio sound bite. It’s a little montage of the media coverage of the sad situation involving Tim Johnson, the Democrat Senator from South Dakota yesterday.
GIBSON: Senator Tim Johnson has suffered a stroke. The Democrats’ control of the Senate could be in peril. It could have enormous political implications.
STEPHANOPOULOS: If Senator Johnson were forced to leave the Senate his replacement would be picked by the governor of South Dakota, a Republican. That would mean that it would go back to 50-50. Republicans would control the Senate.
GIBSON: So the narrow control —
RUSH: Oh, no, no, say it isn’t so!
GIBSON: — would disappear.
COURIC: Big change may be coming in the balance of power on Capitol Hill.
RUSH: Oh, no.
COURIC: — Senator Johnson may have had a stroke. What might this mean for the new Senate?
BORGER: His condition could really determine control of the Senate.
WILLIAMS: A member of the US Senate has suffered a stroke. With control of the US Senate decided by a single vote for the Democrats, this could affect the balance of power.
CHIP REID: There are possible political ramifications here. His replacement would be chosen by the Republican governor.
WILLIAMS: But this is a political matter, Tim, and what are the ramifications?
RUSSERT: They’re enormous, if the Republicans were to become the majority party of the Senate again, Brian, in terms of Iraq policy, Supreme Court nominees, environmental policy, tax policy, very, very significant.
RUSH: I mean, it didn’t take but five seconds for the news to hit, and that’s all anybody started talking about, the media, the Drive-By Media. That town up there — it can be so cold. Here’s the truth of the matter. If Tim Johnson doesn’t die, the Democrats will keep him on a respirator for two years, if they have to, to maintain control of the Senate. They’re not going to let this happen. If he were to die, I can tell you right now what’s happening. Folks, I guarantee you that MoveOn.org and a number of Democrats are getting ready to lobby the South Dakota governor, and you can just hear what they’re going to say, you can just hear it. “The people spoke in November. Governor, you must recognize that the people of this country spoke and want a Democrat controlled Senate.”
The governor in South Dakota is Republican, both houses of the South Dakota government are Republican. Republicans have been elected there recently in droves. But the pressure would be brought to bear, and the media would join in and dump on this governor and try to pressure him into appointing a Democrat if it ever came to that. Make no mistake this is what’s going on behind the scenes, every eventuality being planned for. But it still misses the point. I’m sure you’ve heard this by now. If he doesn’t die, he doesn’t have to resign. There’s all kind of precedent. He doesn’t even have to show up. “Well, how does he vote?” He passes. Or they find a way for him to vote. This is not an unprecedented thing. It is a sad, sad commentary, I think, just to listen to the total concern for this to be the control of the Senate and not for Tim Johnson. Dingy Harry had a press conference, didn’t say much. Let’s go to sound bite number five. This is Dingy Harry this morning, Capitol Hill, about 11:35 or so.
REID: I spent yesterday afternoon and the night with the Johnson family. Senator Daschle was with me all that time. I was at home for a few hours last night, came back this morning. I was in his room with him. He really looks good. I saw him, he looked great. To me he looked very good.
RUSH: It’s that simple, he looked very, very good, he looks really good, I saw him, he looked really good. He said, “I’m not going to answer any medical questions because no matter what I tell you it’s not going to be enough for you.” It really didn’t answer a whole lot of questions. Everybody coming out of brain surgery ends up on the critical list so there’s not a whole lot to read there. The doctor that treated him issued a statement, (paraphrased) “Well, we don’t know if he’s going to need more surgery or not. Everybody’s hoping for a normal recovery.”
Now, I was just thinking, if I’m Tim Johnson, I hope he’s sedated in the hospital when Dingy Harry showed up. Dingy Harry showed up there to spend, he said, the whole night, and he had Tom Daschle with him. If I’m in the hospital and I see Dingy Harry walk in the door, I’m thinking the grim reaper has arrived, especially with Tom Daschle in tow, because Daschle’s always reminded me of a mortician. So my hope is that Senator Johnson was sedated when Dingy Harry showed up. Dingy Harry did not say that he had spoken to him, so I’m hoping he was sedated.
Richie, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, you’re next on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Yeah, Rush, first and foremost, this is a huge honor.
RUSH: Thank you very much, sir, I appreciate it. I’m glad you called.
CALLER: The Tim Johnson thing, it’s like with all these pundits and whatever, first and foremost let’s get this guy healthy. You know, I don’t like Tim Johnson, I’ve never voted for him, I’m an NRA member, pro-life, I’m as Republican as you can get, I believe, but let’s get him healthy. Let’s pray for him and his family that everything’s going to be fine, he’s going to be upright and we can knock him out of the Senate with votes.
RUSH: Let’s be honest about this, shall we?
RUSH: Let’s just be honest about this. In Washington — and this is not everybody there — but the moment this news broke, the first thing that went through a lot of Democrat minds was, “Oh, no, we might lose the majority.” What about Tim Johnson? “I don’t care! We’re going to lose the majority.” And there are probably some Republicans going, “All right, all right, we get to screw the Democrats again.” It is human nature. That town is very cold. The media, the drive-bys, they are just beside themselves because they think they engineered this majority for the Democrats, and so that’s the first area of thought that they experienced. I went to Democrat Underground, one of the kook websites this morning, and you know what they think? They are speculating — it’s not just one or two of them, either. They are speculating that just as the GOP was behind the death of Paul Wellstone, so is the GOP perhaps involved in the illness of South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson.