RUSH: To St. Louis and Steve. I’m glad you called, sir. You’re next on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Rush. I’m — I’m — I’m kind of — uh, uh — I’m kind of confused. I don’t understand why you would want to have Obama debate you, uh — and — and the reason being — and I’m not trying to be argumentative. I’m just trying to — I just want you to be honest. For the past eight years, have you not embraced the policies of George Bush and the Republican Party?
RUSH: In the —
CALLER: And if you have — if you have — if you have — those policies, look where we are now. The policies didn’t work.
RUSH: This is a nice try.
CALLER: No, there’s no try. Didn’t they — ? I mean —
RUSH: Yes, it is. Yes, yes.
CALLER: No, it’s not.
RUSH: It’s a nice trick. I know about certain population centers in St. Louis. I don’t know where your house is and I don’t know where you live, but we could find out.
CALLER: You have embraced the policies of George Bush.
RUSH: Well, that’s what Gibbs said.
CALLER: They did not work.
RUSH: That’s what Gibbs said about Santelli.
CALLER: They did not work.
RUSH: Is the caller still on the phone? I thought… You’re still there, sir?
CALLER: I’m here!
RUSH: Name for me the policies of George Bush you remember me supporting, sir.
CALLER: Uh, ooooh. You… For eight years you haven’t ever discounted any of his policies.
RUSH: Ohhhhh! Not true.
CALLER: You never said that any of his policies did not work.
RUSH: Not true. Sir? Sir? Who do you think helped lead the fight against Bush’s desire for amnesty for illegal aliens? Who do you think led the fight against —
CALLER: What would you do differently?
RUSH: Who do you think — ?
CALLER: What would you do differently?
RUSH: Ah, ah, ah!
CALLER: What would you do differently? I —
RUSH: I opposed it totally. What would I do differently? I also —
CALLER: I’m asking, ‘What would you do differently?’
RUSH: I also announced that — no, no. Don’t change the premise of your question here, sir, or you’re history.
CALLER: I’m not!
RUSH: You are.
CALLER: You’re not answering. You’re not answering the question.
RUSH: You called up with a false premise that I have blanketly agreed with George W. Bush, therefore how can I possibly debate Obama? I’m answering your silly question. I opposed the new Medicare entitlement. Republicans don’t do entitlements. I cringed at some of the spending the Bush administration was doing. I came to the defense of Republicans in the House who were hornswoggled by all this because they dare not oppose their own president for the sake of party unity. I opposed the ‘new tone,’ Steve. I opposed from the outset the idea that the Bush administration was more friendly with its enemies than with its friends. I opposed steel tariffs. I opposed campaign finance reform. I opposed the education bill — and that bailout didn’t go well down here. I wasn’t in support of that bailout, the TARP money. So nice try. That’s why I say nice try. You need to expand your horizons on who I am, beyond some of these cheap little propaganda sites disguised as news sites. Who’s next on this program? Rob in Binghamton in New York. Nice to have you on the EIB Network, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Hello. My name is Rob Kilmer, and I heard what you said about debates, and I have a simple question for you.
CALLER: Yes or no: Are you willing to debate the future of this nation and defend your position, one-on-one — in primetime, national television — with a prominent Democrat, whether it’s Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Rahm Emanuel, whoever? I’m not talking a radio interview. I’m talking the real thing, a true debate. Are you willing to do it, or no?
RUSH: I establish the terms. The terms are the president of the United States. It’s he who is attacking me.
CALLER: I thought it was Rahm Emanuel.
RUSH: Well, who does Rahm Emanuel work for?
CALLER: Well —
RUSH: It’s Rahm Emanuel, as opposed to Carville and Begala. They’re just pretenders trying to get rich again on the back of my fame.
CALLER: So it has to be on your terms that you will defend your position, and — and you want to convince everybody in the nation that you’re right, as long as it’s on narrowly defined terms.
RUSH: Why would I want to give a television network, any television network — which for the last number of years has done its best to trash me, any of them — why would I want to give them the benefit of this? I made my offer. It doesn’t matter —
CALLER: Well, wait a minute! I thought it was about what’s best for the nation.
RUSH: It is. It is.
CALLER: It kinda sounds like what’s best for Rush Limbaugh.
RUSH: It is.
CALLER: Well, are you willing to defend your position in front of ‘a nationally televised audience’ or not? Not radio. Not where you control the format. Have the guts to take your position out there. Risk it.
RUSH: There is no format.
CALLER: Convince people you’re right. Are you willing to do it or not?
RUSH: There is no format. You missed that. There is no format that I create. It will be a standard debate, just like they do on television.
CALLER: No! On television! Three hours!
CALLER: Why not?
RUSH: Well, I’ll do three if he wants to stay that long. I’ll do six if he wants to stay that long!
CALLER: National television, not radio.
RUSH: You can put a camera in here. I don’t care.
CALLER: No, no, no, no, no. Are you willing to have traditional, televised debate?
RUSH: It’s the same difference.
CALLER: Yes or no!
RUSH: I set the…(sigh)
CALLER: I set the terms. That’s not an idea that’s about an agenda. That’s a —
RUSH: Wait a second.
CALLER: That’s a — That’s a (stammering) proposal about you, not about your philosophy.
RUSH: You don’t get to set the terms, either. The last I knew, President Obama has done all kinds of debates where the agenda has not been set by him, where the agenda has been set by Tom Brokaw or whoever the moderator is, Gwen Ifill or something. I think the onus is on President Obama to step out of his comfort zone. The onus is on President Obama. I extended the invitation. It’s up to him. I’m here. I’m willing. I’m able. And they can put a camera in here. There’s one in here already anyway. I hate it, but it’s here.
RUSH: We have a new opinion audit. I have an official opinion auditing firm, the Sullivan Group in Sacramento. They just last week released an audit of my opinion since the election. As you know, I went into the election documented to be almost always right 98.9%. I have jumped a full tenth of a point. I have not been wrong since the election, according to Sullivan Group, the opinion audit now documented to be almost always right 99% of the time. I don’t think people take the time to understand what that means. Do you realize over what a long period of time I have to be 100% right in my opinions to even move it a tenth of a point? Just stunning. I’m very proud of it. Greetings, my friends, I am Rush Limbaugh, your friend here at the EIB Network. 800-282-2882 if you’d like to be on the program. The e-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.
I made an offer in the previous hour based on what Obama’s flunkies are leaking to the media and writing in op-eds, I have offered the president of the United States to fly him down here to my studio on my airplane to feed him with my food, to pick up his lodging at a five-star resort, all at no charge to the taxpayers, for a friendly debate and discussion, his ideas and philosophies versus mine. Leader to leader. By the way, the full details of that offer are now posted at www.RushLimbaugh.com. Since I made that offer in the previous hour our official screener of calls, Mr. Bo Snerdley — we put two of these calls on — has reported that many more of our friends the liberals are calling. We haven’t heard from very many liberal callers in the past couple of months, six weeks, but today, we’re being overwhelmed with calls from our friends the liberals after I have extended this challenge, offer, opportunity. And, of course, they are trying to get me to change the terms of the debate, and they are doing what liberals do.
But just to be firm and just to be clear here, I want President Obama. I do not want a flunky. I do not want an ex-president. I don’t want Bill Clinton. I don’t want Joe Biden. I don’t want Carville, Begala. I want the president. I want this to be a debate, leader to leader. They say that I’m the leader of the Republican Party. President Obama says he is about bipartisanship. If they could broom me out of the way, they could have clear sailing. The dirty little secret is that they don’t need one Republican vote in the House to get whatever he wants; he doesn’t need Republicans to go along with him. But, he seems to want to be bipartisan. He wants to have Republican support for this. I’d like to talk to him about that. They made me the leader of the Republican Party. Here, grab audio sound bite number three. This is a Democrat support group, some union group, and they’re running an ad on TV starting today in Washington, DC.
ANNOUNCER: Who is the leader Republicans hailed as a hero last weekend? Was it Sarah Palin?
PALIN: Nope, nope, nope.
ANNOUNCER: Bobby Jindal?
JINDAL: No, no, no.
ANNOUNCER: Michael Steele?
STEELE: No, no, no.
ANNOUNCER: Mitch McConnell?
MCCONNELL: No, no, no.
ANNOUNCER: Then who? Not Rush Limbaugh?
RUSH ARCHIVE: Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes.
ANNOUNCER: Call the Republican leadership. Tell them to just say ‘no’ to the politics of Rush Limbaugh.
RUSH ARCHIVE: I hope he fails.
ANNOUNCER: Paid for by Americans United for Change.
RUSH: I’ll be glad to explain the ‘I hope he fails’ comment face to face to our president. They’ve made me the de facto head of the Republican Party. Now, the two liberal phone calls that we had in the previous hour illustrate something I want you to all understand. Obama’s people are scared. They said that I am the leader of the opposition. They are raising my profile as a leader of the party and I’m saying, ‘Okay, fine, let’s debate here.’ Now we have callers trying to help The Messiah. He’s afraid for The Messiah, and these callers know The Messiah wouldn’t do very well debating me on the issues and philosophy on the radio. See, this is the way of our friends, the liberals. I make an offer based on what Obama’s flunkies are leaking to the media and what his flunkies in the media are writing in op-eds, and they want to control the process. Just come to this forum. Just come to this forum and let’s debate. I’m not negotiating terms.
Just come out of hiding, Mr. President, stop hiding behind your flunkies. Debate me right here on my radio program. You said you need diversity on the radio. You’ve said you want diversity on the radio, that there’s too much conservatism on the radio. I’m offering you the biggest radio show in the country, to come on and get your ideas out there. Call it my offer of the Fairness Doctrine, extended to you, Mr. President. Not a flunky and not a former president, and not a secretary of state. You. Not Rahm Emanuel. He’s got important work back in the White House advancing your agenda and continuing his off-the-record phone calls with media people, one of the purposes, apparently, is to demonize me. That’s important work, but you can come here and defend your administration, and you can kill two birds with one stone: diversity in the media and bipartisanship. You’re the leader of your party. You’re the president. I’m the leader of your opposition, according to your flunkies. Nothing complicated here.
See, this frightens our friends on the left. They don’t want Obama in a one-on-one debate or even discussion on the radio, certainly not without a teleprompter. They’re scared to death of that. President Obama wouldn’t even appear on Fox for a long time. Now, you liberals who are frightened and scared here, you’re going to have to understand something. You made me the leader. You got what you wanted. Now, stop whining. You people won. You people should finally be happy, sitting on top of the world. I want Obama to debate me on the radio. That’s my offer. It’s not a negotiation. I mean you ought to lap this up. You ought to think that Obama could wipe the floor with me. He’s so good. He’s so authentic. He is the best communicator we’ve ever had. I don’t know what you libs are afraid of.
By the way, this is a perfect example of an open public debate without the government mandating it. You liberals want that kind of debate on radio. You say you can’t get your point of view heard on radio because conservatives dominate, look at my magnificence here, munificence, look at my grace. I am offering the leader of your party and of this country a chance to get on radio where liberals simply can’t seem to make it work. You liberals want this kind of debate on radio, you do. You advocate for the Fairness Doctrine. You want a liberal debating me on radio. You have claimed I’m the leader of the opposition. I will not lower myself to debate the flunkies. I have made a public offer to debate the president on these airwaves. I do so without the government mandating it. You see how fair I am? I myself, Rush Limbaugh, the leader, offering the largest radio audience in the country to a Democrat who happens to be the president of the United States, and this is happening without any legislation on minority ownership rules or local content, or even the Fairness Doctrine.
You see, to my good friends the liberals, I am acceding to all of your desires in this. Everything you want to see happen to radio I’m offering it here on the Excellence in Broadcasting Network. Now, Snerdley, look at me. I’ve made this very clear. I don’t know how much of this you’ve heard because you’re screening calls. Look at me. I am not negotiating with panicked liberal callers. The offer has been made. It contains every element of what they think needs to change about radio. There’s already a camera in here, and this program’s televised on my website each and every day. I understand the liberals are concerned. I understand our good friends are a little panicked over this, but you shouldn’t be. You asked for this, and it’s apparently what you didn’t want. You wanted me to be the leader. Well, here I am. I lead. I don’t listen to advisors, especially on the left.