RUSH: Let’s go back to the audio sound bites. Fox & Friends this morning. This is Steve Doocy and Alisyn Camerota having this exchange about Senator McCain.
DOOCY: Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida, says he’s conservative enough for me.
CAMEROTA: And, remember, he also got the seal of approval from President Bush, who told Chris Wallace that he’s conservative enough as well.
CAMEROTA: So that’s a seal of approval. Have you listened to Rush lately in the past couple of days?
DOOCY: I didn’t listen yesterday, sorry. I was busy.
CAMEROTA: I didn’t, either. I don’t know if Rush has come around.
DOOCY: I heard him on Friday. Still not conservative enough.
RUSH: McCain… (laughter) This is sad news, ladies and gentlemen. The Fox & Friends crew has gone two days without listening to this program, and they had the temerity to admit it; asking each other if they had listened. It’s true. Jeb Bush did endorse John McCain, but people are acting like this is a shock. Why is it that party regulars solidifying and unifying around the party’s nominee is that unique? Well, there’s an answer to the question. It’s unique because not everybody is rallying around Senator McCain, least of all Governor Huckabee. We’re going to move forward here. Let’s just start with number seven. Let’s just go back to me and what I said on this program yesterday about Governor Huckabee.
RUSH ARCHIVE: He is hoping that by staying in there, he can nonplus Senator McCain. He’s hoping that Senator McCain will have one of his famous temper tantrums. I’m telling you. Look, Romney said it. He said, look, we’re heading to another 1976 nominating an old has-been. We’re going to nominate somebody not a genuine Republican. We’re going to set us back. We’re going to lose big just like 1976. This is all designed to have McCain sit there, start getting a little perturbed about it; maybe lose his temper in public.
RUSH: Last night on Larry King Alive, Governor Huckabee appeared. Larry King said, ‘How, governor, do you win this? Lay it out for me how Mike Huckabee can win the nomination.’
HUCKABEE: One, you might have some delegates that defect; people who are committed to somebody else who decide to go elsewhere when they’re released. The main thing is that until somebody has 1191 delegates, we don’t have a nominee. Now, other things could happen. Senator McCain could, uh, say something on any given day, as I could, that would end the campaign. Candidates are capable of having those moments. The other thing that could happen is, if nobody gets 1191; we go to the convention. That’s when the delegates at the convention would actually pick their nominee. That’s a possibility.
RUSH: Throw all that stuff out. (laughing) The real salient point of his comment is, ‘Other things could happen. Senator McCain could say something on any given day…that would end the campaign.’ He threw himself in there, too, as maybe committing such a faux pas. I told you yesterday that’s why he’s hanging in there, and that’s a recognition of the volatile temper that Senator McCain has, and what Huckabee — I don’t know if he’s hoping. (There’s that word again.) But there’s a calculation that the more he irritates McCain, the more likely McCain is to fly off the handle, and it could act as a detriment. It could be something not good for McCain. So Larry King says, ‘Look, Governor Huckabee, you’re a conservative. Why are so many of your brethren so not forgiving of Senator McCain? Why won’t they let him be what he is, when he says he is a conservative?’
HUCKABEE: He angered many conservatives with the immigration bill that was believed to be a form of amnesty. His failure to support the human life amendment and his support for embryonic stem cell, and opposition to ANWR. The McCain-Feingold campaign finance act is really a tough one to swallow. It has, I think, had some very detrimental effects on the overall electoral process in the country. His lack of support for Bush tax cuts. So it’s those things that he has done.
RUSH: All of those things, Huckabee, rat-tat-tat-tat, can rattle them right off, and yet the Drive-Bys, they seem to be mystified by this. ‘Well, why would conservatives care about that? Why would conservatives be concerned? It’s gotta be hate! They just have to hate McCain, right? Because conservatives are haters, right? It’s just gotta be hate. Why would conservatives care about tax cuts? Why would conservatives care about campaign finance reform and free speech? Those are issues! Why would conservatives care about that?’ So no matter how many times you tell the Drive-Bys when they ask you, ‘What’s your problem?’ rat-tat-tat-tat; it goes right over their head. It doesn’t fit the narrative, doesn’t fit the template. By the way, there is a Drive-By guy out there for the New York Times that does seem on the verge of getting it — at least getting me, where I come from. His name is David Kirkpatrick.
RUSH: Ted in Muskegon, Michigan, welcome to the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Rush, hi.
CALLER: Rush, could you just please answer me a question as clear as you can, to perk me up here in Michigan. The question is, if conservatism wins every time it’s tried like you say and like Mitt Romney said, then why are we losing?
RUSH: Because we haven’t had somebody genuinely trying it. That’s the problem, particularly in this cycle. You know, Romney, when we started out, Romney had some flaws, had some flip-flops he had to explain. There were some questions. That’s why nobody coalesced around one of these candidates at the get-go. It’s why McCain is left to pick up the shreds because the conservative vote was split among people who found something attractive about, say, Giuliani, others found attractive about Romney, others found attractive about Huckabee. There hasn’t been anybody that’s united all three legs of the stool.
CALLER: You know, I live in Michigan where we have a tax-and-spend liberal Democratic governor —
CALLER: — who was elected and then reelected. Us business owners are being squashed in Michigan by the Democratic governor and the two Democratic senators. How come these people are getting elected over and over again? It makes me sick.
RUSH: I talked about this yesterday, and in the context of, you know, the real enemy that we conservatives have is not Senator McCain, the real enemy that we face in a political sense is liberalism and liberals. But when you get right down to it, when you strip all the vagaries of this campaign away, what those of us who are genuine conservatives want is to defeat liberals. We don’t want to get along with them. We don’t want to share power with them. We don’t want to walk across the aisle and try to appease them. We’re not interested in having them like us. We view the future of the country as something very serious, and we view liberals’ approach to the future as something very deleterious to the traditions and institutions that have made the country great. We want to defeat them, and one of the reasons why, you look at Detroit. Look at the population drain that’s happened in that city. It’s a testament to the corruption that exists. I think even beyond liberalism, once politicians entrench themselves at the trough of either party the next thing that follows is corruption.
Every time I go to Detroit, I love it, the tradition that’s there, but let’s face it, you don’t need me to tell you what’s happened to Detroit, and you just gave us a great case of what’s happened to Michigan. Michigan is in a one-state recession. General Motors today just announced, what, a 30-some-odd-billion-dollar loss. Now, the answer to your question is that there’s been some flight out of Michigan. And unfortunately, the vast majority of people voting in Michigan are voting to keep the existing people in power because they’ve created a welfare state there. They have created a majority of people now who are dependent on the state government, they have successfully, the Democrats and the liberals, have successfully marketed class envy, and this is why we view this election in the future as serious. I look at some elements of California where the Republican Party is practically nonexistent. I look at the city of New Orleans, fabulous, wonderful, great city, but it’s a testament to what happens when you have 60 years of liberalism unchecked. You have people who are uneducated, unable to get and keep decent jobs, and don’t even want to look for jobs because that’s not how they survive.
The evidence is all around us, what liberalism does and socialism. It’s all around us all over the world. But the liberals for 50 years have succeeded in placing more and more people on the rolls of dependency, for any number of things, largely their needs. This is why conservative leadership is sorely needed to be able to explain to people that their future is being robbed. These people that are in constant dependence, their potential is being robbed. The people that they think are genuinely trying to help them are in fact harming them. But we don’t have anybody on our side, other than on the radio, who’s willing to tell people these things. We have people on our side who want to go get along with them and who themselves want to expand government in such ways that they’re in control of it, for whatever benevolent reasons they assign to themselves. That’s why this is serious. We’re not playing games here with our McCain problems. There’s another piece in the Wall Street Journal today by a guy from, I guess he’s a scholar at the Claremont Institute. Now, the Claremont Institute — how many years ago was it, H.R.? Four or five years ago. Four or five years ago, Larry Arnn, who is a dear friend of mine — he’s now at Hillsdale College; he doesn’t run Claremont anymore — they gave me the highest award they can give, the Churchill Award, named after Winston Churchill.
Today in the Wall Street Journal there is a scholar from that very institute, his name is Helprin. Don’t confuse him with the guy from TIME whose name is Halperin. This guy’s name is Helprin, and he writes a bunch of drivel essentially saying that people like me love chaos and that we succeed by whining and moaning and b-i-itching and complaining, the same old stupid analysis that does not take an intellectual to come up with. We should just get over ourselves. They can’t conceive that we’re fighting for principles we believe in here. They can’t conceive that to us and to me this is about the future of the country and reviving places like Michigan for the betterment of Michigan and the people who live there and for the country. They think, even these scholars on our side, they think that this is about nothing more than me trying to remain dominant on the radio by having somebody in Washington I disagree with because I’m much better when I’m whining and moaning than when I’m supporting. It’s sophistry. It is embarrassingly shortsighted. It certainly isn’t intellectual.
In fact, I would dare say that most of the curious intellectual discourse on the Republican side of the aisle is occurring on talk radio today. It is not where intellectuals are genuinely thought to reside: at the journals of opinion, at the newspapers, and at the think tanks. There’s some exceptions. Great people at AEI; great people at Heritage. But for the most part we’ve got a bunch of followers who themselves are interested in acquiring power, so they have some influence. I don’t care about having power or the influence of policy in Washington. Many on our side do. To us, this is about the future of the country, and it is serious, because we see what you see in Michigan in pockets all over this country. It need not be this way. This is the greatest country on the face of the earth. Our freedom, as documented in our founding documents and acknowledged as having come from God is the reason this country in less than 300 years rules the world like no other group of human beings ever has, and we’re at risk of having that lost and having it changed because there are actually people on the left side of the aisle who don’t like the fact we lead the world. We’re too powerful, that’s destabilizing, and we need to be brought down to size. That’s what global warming is all about. We’ve gotta sacrifice. We gotta slow our economy down. We gotta move back. Bunk to all of that.
This nation’s greatness is unique, and it needs to be persevered. Bill Bennett says, as he signs off his program every day, ‘The last best hope for mankind.’ It’s absolutely true. This country. But it’s not going to be if we ever cede control of it totally to liberals and socialists. It’s that simple, and that’s what motivates us. That’s why party unity doesn’t mean diddly-squat to me if getting behind somebody in the party doesn’t see things I do and is going to contribute — regardless the intentions — to the continued decay of the country. It’s just that simple. I guarantee you if we had somebody running for office out there, Ted, who was able to articulate with passion and confidence his belief in the American people, their ability to triumph and overcome, and the fact that they’re the ones that make the country work, it wouldn’t even be close. But we don’t have that. We have a roster of people who want to pander to the left.