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RUSH: Another audio sound bite. This is yesterday on Slay the Nation, Bob Schieffer talking to Mr. Newt, and it was actually Harry Smith filling in for Bob Schieffer. Harry Smith said to Mr. Newt, ‘Is there room for moderates in the Republican Party?’

GINGRICH: Yes. I am a — I am a Reagan Republican. Reagan believed in very broad base, he always talked about ‘my fellow Republicans’ and those independents and Democrats who want a better future. A third of his votes were Democrats.

SMITH: Well, but you also have a voice of ideological purity out there that unless people kowtow to —

GINGRICH: You just shrug them off!

SMITH: So your advice to other Republicans is shrug off Rush Limbaugh?

GINGRICH: My advice is that — that Colin Powell is a great American, I’m proud that he’s Republican, and, you know, Dick Cheney is a great American. I’m proud he’s Republican. I’m glad both of them are Republican.

RUSH: Okay. For the record, Newt and all the rest of you in the Drive-By Media — speaking for myself and all the other conservatives I know — I’m not a purist. We’re conservatives, plain and simple, Newt. Now, we conservatives don’t always agree with each other. Yeah, Ronald Reagan got a lot of independents and Democrats, but how did he do it? He didn’t pretend he was one of them! He didn’t pretend to be a Democrat. He didn’t pretend to be an independent. Reagan persuaded them. Reagan made them want to join him. Reagan did not change who he was to attract those independents and Democrats. Colin Powell voted for Obama. Colin Powell found McCain unacceptable. If that’s the kind of Republican we want to be proud of, somebody is going to have to explain it to me.

We want to proclaim how proud we are of somebody who not only endorsed Obama strategically at a time to do the most damage to the Republican nominee, he voted against the Republican nominee, after that Republican nominee was the precise candidate that Colin Powell supposedly thinks the party should advance. Shrug off purists? Nope. We’re not purists. We’re conservatives. We don’t always agree with each other. I don’t care if Powell stays a Republican or becomes a Democrat. It doesn’t matter to me what he does, but don’t tell me that he’s the model for the party. If Colin Powell is the model for the Republican Party, there’s no reason to ever vote Republican again — and I’ll just ask again. I asked Hannity this last week on the two-part interview: Somebody tell me what Republican policies Colin Powell champions. What conservative policies does he champion? Where is he out there trying to help rebuild the Republican Party other than tearing me down?

Where is he opposing what Obama’s doing? So it goes on. But never fear, folks. I have never said, ‘The era of Reagan is over.’ I have never said that I want to be a part of a party, that in order get Democrats and independents goes out and acts like them and enacts policies that they would like. I am not going to do that. (interruption) Have I done what about Pelosi on global warming? No, I have not sat down with Nancy Pelosi on global warming. You mean the couch and the TV ad? No, no. And, by the way, I was asked. I never told you. I was asked to do one of those commercials. I forget who with. But I was asked to sit down and do one of those commercials on global warming with Michael Moore. They asked me to sit down with Michael Moore, for the good of the country, for the good of the issue — and I refused to do it. I also have not joined Mrs. Clinton for a conference promoting her health care plan. (sigh) Oh, boy. Never worry, folks. I’m the bulwark, not wavering. I’m the Last Man Standing if necessary.

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