Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: Now, ladies and gentlemen, something I have observed, and once again, I wish I had mentioned this a couple days ago when I first started observing it. I actually observed it throughout the campaign. I just never discussed it with you. I wish I had, because I’ve got audio sound bites once again to confirm that my instincts were correct. You look at Obama and you study him during the campaign, and he said nothing better than anybody has ever said nothing, and he said it articulately, and he said it with confidence, and he said it as a charismatic demagogue and attracted a lot of people. And since the election and even before, when he would do an appearance, he would make it look like it was an Oval Office. For example, the two-minute TV ad looked like it came from the Oval Office, the 30-minute TV ad looked like it came in part from the Oval Office. This guy is acting like the president already. We discussed this on the program countless times. This guy is acting like he’s president already, and the bottom line to that if you strip everything away was that he was acting presidential, acting, a-c-t-i-n-g, acting.

I have discovered — I put it all together now since I heard these sound bites, which are coming up here in just a second — the one campaign line that Obama is likely to live up to. I don’t know if he’s going to live up to tax cuts. I don’t know if he’s going to live up to alternative energy. I don’t know if he’s going to live up to his promise to get out of Iraq immediately. Why should he when the Drive-Bys call the worst bombing attack since June ‘progress.’ (laughing) Gosh, I make myself laugh. Why should he care about getting out of Iraq now if the Drive-Bys are going to sing his praises here? But the one tag line that he will live up to for the next four years, regardless what happens, ‘he acts presidential.’ Remember that. He acts presidential. Accent is not on ‘presidential,’ it’s on ‘acts.’ He acts presidential. So while the media is pondering, ‘Will he be the next JFK? Will it be Camelot?’ The more sensible question is, will he be Martin Sheen who acted presidential on The West Wing? Or will he act more presidential than Dennis Haysbert who played the first black president on 24? Or maybe he will act more presidential than Geena Davis in Commander in Chief, although I doubt that because that show bombed.

Maybe he will turn out to be a Chicago thug and act presidential like Gregory Itzin, the rogue President Logan in 24. But regardless, he’s got it down pat, acting presidential. Maybe he’ll act like President Obama. Wait. Obama is not an actor, even though he acts like one. We don’t know who Obama is. Remember, Charlie Rose and Tom Brokaw, ‘We don’t know who he is.’ He’s acting presidential. With that in mind, a couple of audio sound bites on MSNBC. They are seriously comparing Obama to a TV show. It was this morning, David Shuster talking to former West Wing producer and writer Lawrence O’Donnell, who used to be an NBC contributor. And Shuster says, ‘Producer and writer of NBC’s The West Wing as well as an NBC analyst, all right, Lawrence, here we go, Barack Obama has named his chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel headed to the White House to fill that role in The West Wing. You had Leo McGarry. Any similarities there, Lawrence?’

O’DONNELL: Well, only in that they’re both very experienced and capable. You know, Leo McGarry, I think, David, would be more a model of Tom Daschle. You know, Tom Daschle was the other person who was in the running for that job, and Leo McGarry was the senior statesman type who had more experience than Rahm Emanuel, so Rahm I think is much more similar to the Josh Lyman character who was the deputy chief of staff.

RUSH: They’re serious about this! They are comparing the Obama presidency to The West Wing. Remember all the jokes that we used to tell here about when liberals watch The West Wing they think they’re actually watching the administration? Every time we make jokes about these people the jokes turn out to be true. Then David Shuster says to Lawrence O’Donnell, ‘You mentioned Josh Lyman. David Axelrod will be one of the top advisors. Possible that he’s a combination of Josh Lyman, Toby Ziegler, and Sam Seaborn?’

O’DONNELL: I see David Axelrod as more in the Toby Ziegler mold, the Richard Schiff character in the show. There’s a lot of practical choices you make within government, a lot of compromises. And someone has to keep an eye on, where’s the line, where have we gone too far? And I think David Axelrod fits that view of — because he’s the kind of global strategist of the Obama campaign and presumably will have an eye on a similar perspective in the White House.

RUSH: So, ladies and gentlemen, they are seriously comparing the Obama administration to the TV show The West Wing. It’s all a game. It’s an act. He’s acting presidential, and they are comparing Obama to The West Wing. I just wanted you to know this, just wanted you to know it.


RUSH: The views expressed by the host on this program are real. (laughs) We do not act. If the Obama administration or his transition team is an act, and if they’re comparing it to The West Wing, can I shout, ‘Cut! Stop the action’? No, we’re doomed, ladies and gentlemen, to live through this show. Isn’t it interesting…? You know, Rahm Emanuel has a brother. His name is Ari Emanuel. Ari Emanuel is one of the top agents in Hollywood. Two years ago at the AT&T Pro-Am — when I go out and play there’s always a dinner on Wednesday night hosted by a famous person who wishes the dinner to be kept secret because he can’t invite everybody, so I will not mention his name — I was seated next to Ari Emanuel. It was over the top, nice, energetic, full of energy.

‘You gotta come out! You gotta come out and watch the Academy Awards as my guest. You gotta come out and be with me.’ He was just going over-the-top being nice. ‘You’d love it out here. I have a lot to show you around,’ and so forth. This is like two years ago. I exchanged e-mails with him a couple times. Nothing substantive; nothing policy wise. It just struck me here with all this acting. The Clintons had Harry Thomason, Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, and now the Democrats have got access — the Obama campaign — to whoever they want in Hollywood, from Spielberg to George Lucas, to anybody they want to stage things for them. It’s happened during the campaign. Spielberg produced the thing out in Denver with the Greek columns, if I’m not mistaken. I’m not quite sure about that.

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