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RUSH: Here’s Charles in Redding, California. I’m glad you waited, sir, welcome to the program.

CALLER: Good morning, Mr. Limbaugh, great to talk to you.

RUSH: Thank you.

CALLER: Bozo the Clown dittos from earlier this week. Just wanted to say that I don’t know why everybody’s panicking over McCain. If you take all the primaries that have been held, the caucuses, there’s less than three million people that have voted, and that is by far a far cry from what it takes to elect a president.

RUSH: Well, I know, but wait a second, now. We’re not there yet. We’re talking about nominating.

CALLER: That’s correct. I don’t believe the Republican base, the conservatives, have spoken en masse at all, and I think there’s far too much worry about McCain getting the nomination when only three million people have voted.

RUSH: Well, but it’s a delegate thing. The popular vote right now doesn’t matter, it’s a delegate thing and that’s why right now Super Tuesday — I mean Hugh Hewitt ran some numbers here, worst-case scenario from Romney, just to be fair about it, and these numbers, I’m having to get them from my head and I may be off by a couple hundred but the point will be made. At the end of Super Tuesday, the number of delegates McCain could have would be in the 700s, the number Romney would have would be in the 300s, that’s large to overcome. It can be done, it can still be done, but that’s monumental, and Huckabee will be in there with 150 some odd. The real key to this is Huckabee. A vote for Huckabee is a vote for McCain in the primaries.

CALLER: That’s right. And that’s what you and Hannity and Ann Coulter and Reagan are all getting out there, that the Republicans en masse still have not chosen their nominee yet; it’s still too early.

RUSH: No, it’s because of what I said yesterday. The base is fractured for a whole host of reasons. Look, conservatism, in its most elemental state, has three legs to the stool. You have the social conservatives; you have the fiscal conservatives, and you have the national security conservatives. All right? There isn’t a candidate getting the support of all three. They’re going different places. Enough of the social conservatives are going to Huckabee. The economic conservatives are almost totally going for Romney, and the economic conservatives, they’re the guys of small government, less taxation, less regulation. The national security conservatives, to whom that’s most important, are also moderates on social things, but McCain is getting a lot of them. So it’s split, and it’s split not because the party is split, it’s fractured not because conservatism is fractured, it’s fractured because there’s not a candidate that unites all three.

So Huckabee is taking votes away from Romney. Rudy probably did the same. Now those votes for Rudy, the guess is they’re going to go for McCain, but I think Huckabee stays in precisely to split the Romney vote so that Romney doesn’t get it. At this point, McCain is getting enough to do well on his own. Huckabee’s doing enough to keep Romney from getting close. So it’s all about delegates, and I know people on our side are urging Huckabee to get out. I would never. I’m not going to join that fray. I’ll just point out that this is what’s happening. Conservatism isn’t fractured. There’s nobody that can unite them all. There are people out there that have, people out there that could, but this current roster didn’t. It’s allowed the establishment Republicans, these foreign policy guys, and they’ve got, you know, they’re the Jurassic Park people, they’re the Nixon, the Bob Dole, this group believe in activist, big government that they control, and they’re conservative on some things, but they’ve never won an election without conservatives, not a presidential race; it has never happened. And it’s not going to happen this time, either. This year is not going to be the exception for that.

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