RUSH: Let’s go to the audio sound bites because the health care topic is obviously the one that’s first and foremost front and center. Let’s go first to Sunday. This is the House whip, Congressman Clyburn, James Clyburn, Democrat, South Carolina, former head of the Congressional Black Caucus. They’re not a happy bunch these days, either.
CLYBURN: No, we don’t have them as of this morning, but we’ve been working this thing all weekend, we’ll be working it going into the week. I’m also very confident that we’ll get this done. I have been talking to members for a long time on this, and they have the will to do it. They’ve been looking to us to create a way to do it. I think we have gotten to a place where we do have a way to do it and I think the members are going to vote for this.
RUSH: That’s Sunday. They don’t have the votes. He doesn’t even sound confident he’s going to get the votes. Then he said in an interview with McClatchy newspapers, the House health care vote could be delayed until as late as Easter now. ‘Clyburn said it is possible that the House vote on healthcare reform could take place long past the vote Democratic leaders had hoped for this week. ‘The chances are good, but I wouldn’t bet on it,’ the third-ranking House Democrat said of whether a healthcare vote could be held by the April 4th holiday.’ Then this next story, and I got this in an e-mail question: ‘Rush, I’m confused, I don’t understand. If they have the votes why would they need the Slaughter Rule?’
‘House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, still shoring up support for legislation to overhaul the US health-care system, vowed that Democrats will be ready to pass the bill when the time comes. ‘When we bring the bill to the floor, we will have the votes.” They obviously don’t have the votes. Stupak, by the way, says they’re 16 votes short. But Stupak’s been all over the board on this with his predictions. (interruption) About Stupak? Yeah, yeah, yeah, well, he’s a Democrat, I mean you gotta keep ’em at arm’s length no matter what they say they’re for or against, moderate, Blue Dog, lapdog, rabid dog, whatever they want to call themselves. But I happen to think he’s right about this one. I think they are at about 200 votes. I’m running a risk in telling you what I really think here, ’cause I don’t want anybody to relax over this, but I don’t think they’re close. I think the only reason they’re talking the Slaughter Rule is because they’re not close, and the Slaughter Rule is basically they’re going to pass a bill which they haven’t voted on, they’re going to deem it. No question about it, it’s unconstitutional. This is not how legislation becomes law. It’s right there in the Constitution. I’m sure that all of you who have been paying attention to this have heard this throughout the weekend and yesterday. What they’re doing is totally unconstitutional.
I believe that if Pelosi could pass the Senate bill, she’d do that. She would do that. But they don’t have the votes to pass the Senate bill and they’re probably not going to get the votes to pass the Senate bill. So now they’re doing… it’s got a bunch of different names, self-executing rule, going to deem the Senate bill to have passed. What Slaughter is doing, she’s head of the rules committee, and, by the way, the Republicans have done this, the Republicans have used self-executing things before, and the Democrats are saying, ‘Hey, well, wait a minute, you can’t criticize this, why, why, the Republicans did this.’ Yeah, they did it raising the debt limit, which is a perfunctory thing. I frankly don’t think it should ever be used. I think the Constitution needs to always be upheld, but just because the Republicans did it doesn’t give everyone else the right. Just because somebody breaks a law doesn’t give everybody else the right to break the law with impunity. The Republicans never did anything like this with this scope, nationalizing, socializing two-and-a-half trillion dollars of the private sector economy in this country, one-sixth of it, they’ve never done anything like that.
In fact, I have the details in my numerous stacks of stuff here today, but the first time that Republicans tried this, Louise Slaughter sued them and Pelosi sued them and Henry Waxman sued the Republicans for using this self-executed — basically what Slaughter is trying to do now. The bad news is they lost. An appellate court upheld what the Republicans did. But they didn’t endorse it, they just upheld it. And again it was on the basis, ‘Ah, you know, this is a perfunctory thing,’ the country has to raise the debt limit every now and then and this is a fast way of getting it done. Democrats said, ‘Well, why are you complaining at us?’ Republicans have never, ever tried to do anything like this. I really believe Pelosi, to get back to this train of thought, would love to be able to pass the Senate bill and not have to go the Slaughter Rule route. But she will. The Democrats may be suicidal, and they may be willing to lose a lot of people, but Pelosi doesn’t want to get hurt, and Reid doesn’t want to get hurt. They’re happy to sacrifice other members of the Senate, primarily of the House. But they don’t want to suffer. They don’t want any bad hits to their reputation from inside their own camps.
I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if they’re going back and forth on the Slaughter Rule simply as a way to make it look like the Senate Democrats and Obama failed to get this done. Because what will happen, if the Slaughter Rule is used, they will deem the Senate bill passed, but it will not have passed, so the president really can’t sign it, even though it’s deemed to have passed. So they’ll add the Slaughter Rule to it, which adds all these changes, the term reconciliation being used, and then those changes — one thing nobody has been talking about, and it finally hit me last night, the one thing nobody’s been talking about, what does Reid think of this? What do all these senators think of this? The House is here making unilateral changes to their bill, what did they think of it? Nobody’s asking Democrat senators, what do you think about taking out the Cornhusker Kickback or what do you think about putting in the public option and what do you think about the abortion rules and then having it paid for by taxpayers? Nobody’s asking them that.
Well, those things eventually have to go to the Senate, they have to eventually debate ’em and approve ’em and we could have a reverse situation here theoretically. Before this all said and done, it could be the Senate that has to now deal with whatever the House has done and what if they don’t? What if they don’t pass it? Then who gets the blame? Reid! Then it’s on Reid’s head that the thing didn’t happen. And then it’s on Obama’s head, but it’s not Pelosi, ’cause Pelosi can say, ‘Hey, I did whatever it took to get this passed.’ There is so much intrigue going on with this and it’s all based around the fact they don’t have the votes. Now, I don’t think they’re close, I don’t think they’re five short, I don’t think they’re four short. These whip counts, who can possibly know? My instincts, I trust ’em. I very seldom doubt my own instincts. I mean, folks, even when I think I’m wrong I’m usually right. That’s how right on, spot on my instincts are. And the way this is all playing out, how many endgame stories have we had in the last year? ‘Democrats down to the endgame on –‘ for a full year! They haven’t had the votes for a full year. There’s nothing that’s happened this year to make it any more palatable to support this thing. It’s only gotten worse.
The White House even has a pollster out there who is lying about the support for the bill increasing since Obama’s State of the Union show. And what he’s doing is saying, ‘Look at this individual part of the bill, people like that, that individual part.’ He’s taking little parcels of it, asking poll questions about it, but when people are asked about the whole comprehensive bill, they reject it by a majority poll number each and every time, and the number is getting bigger. The number of people in the country who oppose this is getting bigger. There’s nothing that has happened to inspire anybody to have any more confidence this thing is going to pass in the last six weeks, the last two months, yet you turn on the television and all you see is we’re going to get this done, we’re really close, we’re only five votes down, Obama is delaying his trip. It’s only a vacation trip, no big deal.
Now, Clyburn is out there saying we may not get this done by Easter, which means if he can’t get the votes in the House done, either Slaughter rule or whatever, which is unconstitutional and ought to cause, if it happens, peaceful outrage like we have never seen before, peaceful, but this news every day, ‘Oh, yeah, we’re really close, we’re really close,’ it’s all designed to dispirit us. It’s all designed to dispirit opposition and dispirit members who are going to vote ‘no.’ It’s all designed to create a false sense of momentum toward passage. And I don’t see it. I know Pelosi’s trying to buy votes, and I know all these things are going on, and I’m not saying it’s dead, please don’t misunderstand, and I’m not saying stand down, I’m not saying relax on this. This is a time to stay as intense in your opposition to this as ever before.
But if this doesn’t happen by the time the Easter Passover break happens, of course these members of the House are going to go home and they’re going to get an earful from their constituents, and that’s one thing that everybody’s worried about in getting this done. It’s gotten to the point now where this is not even about health care reform, it’s not about doctors and nurses and clean water, it’s not about insurance. It’s about saving the Obama presidency. That’s what’s driving this, the absolute wrong reason, the wrong inspiration, the wrong motivation for doing this. It’s all about saving Obama. Destroying the country, one-sixth of the country, it’s not worth saving Obama’s presidency. Obama’s presidency is an abject failure and deserves to continue failing.
RUSH: Now, this Clyburn business, James Clyburn coming out in McClatchy said, ‘We may not get enough votes here to get this passed by Easter.’ This is the first real public sign of weakness by the Democrats in this. As I say, normally what we see each and every day is, ‘Oh, yeah!’ Like Pelosi last Friday with that Botox smile. You know what? I would love to know… Never mind. Never mind. I was going to say ‘what pharmaceutical she’s on,’ but I withdraw it. She’s up there smiling big time on Friday. (doing impression) ‘It’s going to be so wonderful, and it’s going to be so exciting. A week from now, the president will be here, this historic vote for national health care, what will happen next week. We’re so excited and, the president delaying his trip,’ as though it’s a fait accompli. Why not do it now? Why make him delay? What’s the magic? What are you going to find between now and Saturday? Whose votes are you going to change?
Taking Kucinich up for a spin in Air Force One and you go to him under pressure in front of his constituents there in Cleveland is going to make a difference? The guys like Kucinich are not the problem. The problem is the 17 people that voted ‘yes’ last time who are thinking of voting ‘no’ this time ’cause everything’s different in their district. There’s some polling data I saw in Wall Street Journal on Sunday night. I mean, some of these Democrat districts it’s hopeless, and some of these people voted ‘yes’ the first time around and might be voting ‘no.’ This Clyburn coming out here and saying, ‘Weeeell, health care vote could push past the Easter holiday, could be delayed,’ that’s the first real public sign of weakness. The first deviation from this, ‘Oh, yeah! Everything’s cool. We’re out on track. We’re going to have the votes. We’re so close, we’re so excited,’ and you have all these three robots — Axelrod, Gibbs, somebody else from the White House — all on the Sunday shows flooding the zone. ‘Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. It’s easy. We’re going to have these votes.’ They don’t have the votes now.
RUSH: Let’s go back to the audio sound bites. This is Obama putting the screws to Dennis Kucinich.
OBAMA: Your own congressman, who is tireless on behalf of workin’ people, Dennis Kucinich.
FOLLOWERS: (cheers and applause)
SCREAMING MAN: VOTE YES!
OBAMA: Come-ah (snickers) Did you hear that, Dennis? Go and say that again.
SCREAMING MAN: VOTE YES!
RUSH: Yeah, big 200 crowd of people there, ‘Vote yes!’ to Kucinich in there. How do you buy off Dennis Kucinich? Would somebody explain that? He’s got an extremely dishy wife. His wife’s a millionaire. How do you buy the guy off? You gotta put the public option in there to buy this guy off. You gotta make it even worse. (interruption) What? (interruption) I know he… (interruption) Well, he’s… (interruption) No. He said ‘no’ last week, and now he’s saying he’s undecided. I can explain that to you. Well, not very many people get to fly on Air Force One and the people that do very seldom are brought into the presidential cabin and wined and dined — or, in this case, chewed out. You know, Dennis Kucinich, at the end of the day, is a nonentity, as is every member of Congress compared — individually compared — to the president. So you bring them into the Oval Office or Air Force One where you’re flying him back to his district and he gets to get off the airplane with you.
This is presidential power; this is how it’s used. It can be used to say, ‘Dennis, you’re really important. I need you. I need you.’ Everybody wants to be needed. Everybody at the end of the day wants to say, ‘I’m the man, I’m the guy that helped the president get this done.’ (interruption) Well, he’s a true believer. Yeah, Kucinich is a true believer, and I’m by no means predicting how it’s going to go. I’m just asking you what they could do to pressure the guy. I mean, they can’t buy him off. His wife’s got a zillion dollars, so it’s easy for him to go out and be a socialist. You know, he married up. By the way, here’s the latest news from the House. Boehner ‘today announced that House Republicans intend to force a vote on a resolution requiring an actual up-or-down House vote on the Senate health care bill.’
This is a technique they’re going to try to stop the Democrats from using the Slaughter Rule. ‘If passed by the House, the resolution would prevent Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) from implementing the ‘Slaughter Solution,’ the scheme by which Democratic leaders are seeking to pass the Senate [bill].’ The statement says: ”This week, House Republicans intend to force a vote on a measure that would give the American people an up-or-down vote on the Senate health care bill,” without all this Slaughter stuff, ‘Boehner said.’ Now, I have no idea how the vote on that would come out. You know, I think what they’re trying to do is say, ‘Let’s force a vote. Let’s make the Democrats go on record that they are willing to break and violate the Constitution. Let’s get the Democrats on record saying, ‘Yep,’ they intend to be lawless and they will use lawlessness.’
What are the odds that Boehner is able to get this vote? Pretty slim. Pelosi would have to call for it, have to agree to it. But at least it’s not a bad countermeasure.
RUSH: Washington Post today: ‘We understand the administration’s sense of urgency on health-care reform.’ I don’t know that they do. The sense of urgency is not health care reform. It’s not insurance premiums, it’s nothing. It’s saving Obama’s face. The urgency is about saving Obama’s presidency. But then the post editorial continues: ‘But what is intended as a final sprint threatens to turn into something unseemly and, more important, contrary to Democrats’ promises of transparency and time for deliberation.’ Well, big deal. Do they still believe at the Washington Post that transparency and proper time for deliberation is a factor here? ‘House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters Monday that she is leaning toward a parliamentary maneuver under which the House would vote on a package of changes to the Senate-approved reform bill, and the underlying Senate bill would then be ‘deemed’ to have passed, even though the House had never voted on it. That may help some House members dodge a politically difficult decision, but it strikes us as a dodgy way to reform the health-care system.’ Well, that’s exactly right.
Here we are, look at the tricks, the unconstitutionality, the lawlessness that the Democrat Party is having to resort to in order force something down our throats that nobody wants. This is not just a little bit of debt raising, this is one-sixth of the US economy. This is more than unseemly. It is unconstitutional. It’s more than dodgy. It is lawlessness. It is perhaps the greatest assault on the Constitution in our lifetimes. The Constitution is probably more specific about how a bill becomes a bill than it is about anything else in the Constitution. It spells it out from beginning to end with no ambiguity. A president cannot sign a bill until it has been passed by both houses, and this will not do that. Even the Slaughter Solution, will not do that. This is more than dodgy, this is more than unseemly. It’s illegal! It is un-American, it is unconstitutional, and it is lawless. And it deserves no patience or tolerance whatsoever.
RUSH: So we have the House Democrats literally ripping up the Constitution, writing the longest suicide note in history, and calling it ‘self-executing.’ (laughing) We have all that going on, and the media’s constitutional scholars are talking about the politics of the wife of a Supreme Court justice. It’s amazing stuff.
By the way, the top four Democrat leaders all disagree on where they are in the votes. Bloomberg: ‘Pelosi Says Dems to Have Votes for Health Bill.’ The Hill: ‘Hoyer Shoots Down Larson’s Vote Count, Clyburn’s Timeline.’ The Hill: ‘Clyburn Says Health Vote Could Push Past Easter Holiday.’ Politico: ‘Larson Says Dems Have the Votes.’ The Hill: ‘Hoyer Shoots Down Larson’s Vote Count,’ says they don’t have the votes, and shoots down ‘Clyburn’s Timeline’ of Easter. Folks, they’re turning into the Keystone Cops. They’re a dangerous bunch of Keystone Cops. But people are starting to laugh at them now. The Alinsky Rule for Radicals of ‘ridicule’ is being turned on the House Democrats. It’s about time.