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RUSH: Yesterday on Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer spoke with David Brooks of the New York Times about McCain. And Bob Schieffer says, ‘You’ve written a lot of stories. You’ve chronicled many McCain campaigns. You were one of the early riders on the Straight Talk Express back in 2000. Are you surprised by the tone that this campaign seems to have taken?’

BROOKS: Some of us who were on that bus, this is not the campaign we were hoping he would run, and, frankly, this is not the campaign he was hoping to be run. And this is how they explained it. They got no attention. They could not break through. So they decided Obama is the race.

RUSH: Uh, be still, my beating heart. David Brooks, one of the conservative intelligentsia seeking to redefine the Republican Party and redefine conservatism. This was not the campaign we were hoping McCain would run. This was not the campaign he was hoping to be running, and they got no attention running the campaign that the wizards smart wanted him to run. The campaign they wanted him to run was a campaign where he would guarantee lose. McCain was running a campaign that would be a guaranteed lose. And now they’re all, ‘Oh, no, this can’t be, we’ve lost such a golden opportunity.’ But they couldn’t break out, they couldn’t get noticed so they decided Obama’s the race. Obama has always been the race. So then Schieffer says, ‘So what you’re saying is that the McCain campaign has decided to make this election a referendum on Obama?’

BROOKS: They feel they have no choice, and I think they’re sort of right, they’re half right about that. But this is going to be insufficient for McCain, because if the race is — somebody’s offering change, Obama, who you have doubts about, versus somebody who’s not offering change, well, they’ll go with the change even with the doubts, so McCain has to come out with a much more positive agenda, something that shows he’s different from the Republican Party, and they haven’t told that story yet particularly well.

RUSH: All right, this is a conservative intelligentsia, and this is the kind of thinking that has given us McCain as the nominee. And this is the kind of thinking that is inspiring the McCain campaign. And what did he just say? McCain has to come out with a much more positive agenda, something that shows he’s different from the Republican Party. Mr. Brooks, he has done that with flying colors. With your or whoever else’s advice, McCain has secured the fact that he is not a Republican. He has made it plain to everybody else that he is different from the Republican Party. He proudly says so. A positive campaign? A positive campaign could be defined as someone who is finally starting to laugh at the silly presumptuousness that we are being sold about Obama.

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