RUSH: Here is Jennifer in Midland, Texas. Hello, Jennifer.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. West Texas dittos.
RUSH: Thank you. Thanks very much.
CALLER: Well, it’s nice to talk to you. However, I do need to let you know I’m not going to faint for John McCain no matter he says.
RUSH: Yeah, I don’t think it’s been happening out there —
CALLER: No, it hasn’t been happening.
RUSH: — happening in the — in the Obama campaign. But you know, the fainting, it’s either planted or there’s a flu bug going on out there.
CALLER: Well, there is a flu bug, and we’ve been having it here in Midland. What caused me to think of this was listening to your Obama story, and I was thinking how silly it is to be so enamored of your political candidate or anybody, really, and I wondered if it might, I was thinking of the disgusting situation we find ourselves here in that the media has chosen our candidate for us, what do you think about a candidate where we already know some of his foibles before he gets there, instead of being blindsided? I’m from Midland, and I love W, but, my gosh, you know, he blindsided me. I don’t know if he blindsided you.
RUSH: Well, on some things, yeah. What is your question? We’d much rather have somebody that we know is going to dissatisfying a little bit, than take a chance on somebody who could just be a disaster?
CALLER: Well, I mean either one is going to have the same power, whatever limitations that may be. And if you know already what a person is likely to mean… I mean is there an opportunity to gird yourself for that, to maybe, you know, find some way to rally support for the other side and just, you know, beat ’em into submission somehow.
RUSH: Well, you’re going to have to put some names here. Are you suggesting it would be much easier to support McCain than Obama?
CALLER: Well, yeah. (laughter) I’m not going to vote Democrat no matter what.
RUSH: All right, neither am I, but I just wanted to know what you meant. So you’re giving me the ‘hold your nose’ argument, you know, the devil you know is worse than the devil you don’t know. This is what you’re saying.
CALLER: Well, kind of. I mean I don’t feel like I’d be setting aside my conservative principles if he was the only person on the ballot. And the primary in March, you know —
RUSH: Wait, wait, wait. I understand what you’re saying —
RUSH: How can you set aside your conservative principles when there’s nobody to invest them in?
CALLER: Right, right, so I figure —
RUSH: Right. That is why I have been suggesting to people, in addition to however you vote in the presidential race, pay attention to congressional and state races, especially congressional and Senate races. And the way to do that is keep an eye on the farm system. The farm system is state legislatures. Pay very close attention to the people in Texas legislature who are voting for tax cuts, have a conservative agenda, because that’s where congressional candidates eventually come from, in large measure, not totally, but they do. Because if we’re going to have a president who is not as conservative as you would like, and we might have one that’s not even conservative at all, then you’re going to need some way to stop them. And that’s done with significant numbers of conservative Republicans in the House and Senate.
So there’s no reason to sit it out and there’s no reason to think that your vote’s being wasted. There are other ways to enforce, or to try to ensure, that you get as close to what you want happening. Not everything that the executive branch wants to do gets done. So there are any number of ways of dealing with this. But I understand what you’re saying. I’ve never urged anybody to vote for Hillary or Obama here, and wouldn’t. And I don’t know where that got started, unless somebody believed my fake endorsement of Obama last week. Look, I said I might support Hillary because McCain said that she’d be a fine president. In fact, he was asked about that. Grab sound bite number two. McCain was asked about this by George Stephanopoulos yesterday. He said, ‘Back in 2005, Senator, you said I have no doubt Senator Clinton would make a good president.’
MCCAIN: She would be a good president in the respect that I think she has integrity, I think she has all of the qualities that are necessary, but she has a very different philosophical view, the liberal Democratic view than I have, which is conservative Republican.
RUSH: Yeah, she’d be a fine president. That’s all. He had said it. I mean, if our nominee says she would be a fine president, why can’t I say it? People have a conniption fit when I say it. February 8th on the website. What, was ten days ago? The Jindal interview was on the website on February 8th, ten days ago. Find the website for February 8th at RushLimbaugh.com in the archives, and if you didn’t read the Bobby Jindal interview, you’ll find out what all the hubbub was about with my suggesting that he would make a fine, fine vice presidential nominee.
Ben, North Georgia on a cell phone. Great to have you with us, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Hello, Rush. Mega dittos. I’ve been listening to you since the day after Bill Clinton got elected in ’92.
RUSH: That was a very depressing day for many Americans, and we got them through that day.
CALLER: But that was a brilliant broadcast that day. It was just excellent. I wanted to chime in my two cents here. I’m tired of holding my nose at the polls. I’m not going to vote for McCain. I plan to dig around, see who — there’s usually a couple of also-rans at the bottom of the ballot, I’m going to see if I can find some kind of a right-wing zealot who just absolutely terrifies the liberals with probably no chance of getting elected, but I’m going to vote for him because —
RUSH: You mean for president?
CALLER: For president.
RUSH: Oh, okay.
CALLER: I just — I can’t — I’m tired of voting for people who just refuse to represent me. John McCain has campaigned against Republicans every time he’s got the chance. He’s much more fond of reaching across the aisle, as he puts it, than —
RUSH: Well, that’s been the case the last eight years or so. His earlier years in the Senate were not that way.
CALLER: Yes. I understand. I’m gonna go by his record that I’m aware of, and unfortunately that’s the record of primarily the last eight years, in which he’s pretty much shot us down every chance he’s got. I agree with your philosophy that we need to defeat liberalism. If we really believe in what we stand for, we need to defeat liberalism, not constantly try to, you know, reach across the aisle to Ted Kennedy and his ilk. That’s just not something I’m willing to vote for.
RUSH: It’s very frustrating, I agree with you. But, look, the Republican establishment is firmly embedded in that philosophy now.
CALLER: Well —
RUSH: The Republican — not the conservative — but the Republican establishment is embedded with the notion that we need to reach across the aisle, work with people, get things done, comity, good vibes, you know, all these wonderful things.
CALLER: That reminds me of something you said on quite a few occasions, especially back when the — when Newt and the freshman class took over way back when, that the Republicans just don’t seem to be comfortable being in power, that a lot of them seemed like they were just a lot happier to be doormats for the last 30 years.
RUSH: You’re paraphrasing it incorrectly, but you’re very close. What I said was that psychology is psychology, and the Republicans were not in power for 40 years in the House of Representatives. And aside from the Reagan years as president, conservatives were not in power. What had their position been? Their position had been opposing, criticizing, reacting, you might say knocking on the door, working from the standpoint of the minority to try to stop the majority. It’s sort of like a person who’s been fat, overweight for a long time and loses a lot of weight doesn’t believe for a long time that he’s lost a lot of weight. He will stare in the mirror every five minutes to check to see if it’s still off, will not really feel different. He physically will, but psychologically won’t feel that different, depending on how much time the person overweight has been overweight, and if the weight loss is significant. And when the overweight person puts the weight back on, which invariably happens, the person says, ‘Well, that skinny me, that just wasn’t me. That’s just not who I was.’ They rationalize it.
By the same token, the Republicans and conservatives who had been in the wilderness for 40 years found themselves in the majority, and they were leaders. And you don’t criticize yourselves. You advance an agenda. And the first couple years Newt and the boys did that, and after awhile, government shut down in 1995, some other things, they just lost a little focus. My theory was that they made a miscalculation that the ’94 election meant that the country had gone conservative and just assumed people now supported them, and they stopped teaching conservatism along the way, which is what Reagan did as leader of a movement. He was constantly teaching and explaining conservatism as he went along. We have people now saying, ‘I am conservative. I believe in conservatism,’ but they’re not telling anybody what it is. And you have to do that. It’s not a minority in the way most people live. It’s a minority in the way most people vote. And so it’s a constant, constant education process. And if that breaks down and stops, then you’re eventually going to lose it.
So it was an attitudinal thing. It was something they weren’t conditioned to. But at the same time, Clinton was in the White House, so they got to do both things. They got to lead the House as conservatives, but they also got to rail against Clinton which is what conservatives have been doing for the longest time. And there’s a body of thought that says, you know, maybe we’re not cut out to lead, maybe we’re cut out to share. It’s a lack of confidence, perhaps. I don’t know what it is, but I think part of it is — like if 70% of the electorate believes in global warming and you want to get reelected, you gotta act like you believe it, too. And that’s not leadership; it’s pandering. And that describes a whole lot of elected officials, too. And that’s what gets frustrating to all of us, who think we could do their jobs better than they are doing it.