RUSH: You might have missed this. Bob Shrum’s got a new book out, and it’s just a soap opera about the Democrat Party. He ran Kerry’s losing campaign. He hasn’t run a winning Democrat campaign ever. His memoir, as it’s titled, ‘No Excuses: Confessions of a Serial Campaigner.’ And he’s dumping all over John Edwards in this book, and one of the excerpts that I’ve read, Shrum recalls asking the Breck Girl at the outset of the 2004 presidential campaign, ‘What is your position, Mr. Edwards, on gay rights?’ Shrum quotes Edwards as saying, ‘I’m not comfortable around those people.’ At that point Elizabeth said, ‘John, you know that’s wrong.’ Edwards’ pollster, Harrison Hickman, who was in the room during the discussion, says that Shrum is sensationalizing and taking out of context what was an honest discussion about Edwards’ lack of exposure to gay people and these issues. Hickman says, ‘I don’t remember anything that expressed any kind of venom or judgment about gay people.’
Now, I’m going to tell you something. If John Edwards were a Republican, he would be off to some sort of rehab today, once this appeared. When Bob Shrum says that he didn’t know anything about gay people, was uncomfortable around gay people, John Edwards uncomfortable around gay people, if Edwards were a Republican, he would either be going into rehab for a month or spending more time with his family starting this afternoon. He better thank his lucky stars he’s a Democrat, and this is in the Washington Post, by the way, today, this little excerpt. Also, this headline from TheStreet.com: ‘John Edwards stakes claim on pirate booty.’ (Laughing.) ‘The question of the day: Just how much of the $500 million sunken treasure found in the Atlantic last weekend belongs to Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards?’ This story is written by Brett Arends. ‘I put a call in to Edwards’ campaign yesterday morning to find out, but I haven’t heard back yet. The reality? The populist one-term senator will get an undisclosed piece of the action from the sunken 17th-century galleon. The ship, laden with gold and silver, was found at the bottom of the Atlantic by a little-known exploration company, Florida-based Odyssey Marine Research Even less well known is who owns OMR. Biggest shareholder: New York-based Fortress Investments,’ the hedge fund that Edwards works for. (Laughing)
He’s out there charging 55 grand to universities to give speeches on poverty. He said he went to the hedge fund to learn about poverty. It turns out he’s now invested a little bit in this project to find this seventeenth century ship. ‘Edwards’ personal financial disclosures show he’s an investor in the exclusive Drawbridge Global Macro Fund, which owns the 9.9% stake in OMR,’ which is owned by the hedge fund, the Fortress Investment Group that he went to work for. So he stands to get 10% of 500 million, which is 50 million. ‘Fortress investor relations manager Lilly Donohue did not return a call or an email seeking information on the Global Macro fund. Fortress’ stake is even bigger than at first appears. In a complex holding, it owns 3.1 million shares, plus millions more in preferred stock and warrants. Total economic interest is the equivalent of 6.98 million shares. Profits in the last week already come to $19 million.’ Hey, Koko, here’s the headline for the website tonight on these two stories: ‘Edwards Gets Booty, Says ‘Uncomfortable’ with Gays.’ (Laughing.) Yes. (Laughing.) That’s it right here in the headline. ‘John Edwards stakes claim on pirate booty.’ Edwards gets booty, says uncomfortable with gays. (Laughing.) He just doesn’t like to walk the plank. (Laughing.) That’s the subhead, Koko. Gets booty, uncomfortable with gays, doesn’t like to walk the plank. (Laughing.) All right.
San Francisco Chronicle. I mentioned this yesterday, but I didn’t get into any detail about this. Story by Carla Marinucci, Chronicle political writer. This is the headline of the story: ‘Recent headlines threaten Edwards’ main campaign theme.’ Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Headlines are the culprit here? Headlines are going to do the Breck Girl in? Don’t you just love the Drive-By Media? (Laughing.) What is his main campaign theme? Booty! (Laughing.) It is. The guy is so focused on money, what else are we to conclude here? Which is fine and dandy, except when you’re out there saying you’re doing all this to learn about poverty. Anyway, the story goes on to list all of his gaffes and all of his problems with the big house and all these things.
RUSH: Some John Edwards sound bites in order. This is yesterday afternoon on CNN, The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzed. Wolf plays a quote from President Bush at the Coast Guard commencement in which the president said, ‘the enemy in Vietnam had neither the intent nor the capability to strike our homeland. The enemy in Iraq does.’ Blitzer then said to the Breck Girl, ‘What do you say to the president?’
EDWARDS: I say the president has used this term that he uses over and over, global war on terror as a political slogan. He used it to justify everything he does: Guantanamo, the ongoing presence in Iraq, spying on Americans, he uses it to bludgeon people who — who disagree with him, who dissent and speak out in this democracy against him. And he doesn’t deal with the fact that he’s completely devastated our military, both men and women and equipment during the course of this war in Iraq, made us more vulnerable, and on top of that he’s done incredible damage to America’s moral authority in the world.
RUSH: I mean, I’m telling you this is right out of the handbook. And this is dangerous. There aren’t too many gray cells at work here, folks. This is an empty suit. This is nothing but clichéd platitudes that represent no thought whatsoever. Now let’s go to his bumper sticker comment. This the Council on Foreign Relations speech yesterday.
EDWARDS: Whether by manipulating threat levels leading up to the elections or by deeming opponents weak on terror, they’ve shown no hesitation whatsoever —
RUSH: Wait a second, stop the tape. Wait a minute. What do you mean, weak on terror? You just got through saying the night before that there isn’t a war on terror, what do you mean weak on terror? Anyway, here’s the rest of it.
EDWARDS: To divide. The war on terror is a slogan designed only for politics. It is not a strategy to make America safe, it’s a bumper sticker, not a plan. It has damaged our alliances and it’s weakened our standing in the world.
RUSH: The bumper sticker is the Breck Girl with your picture next to it. That’s a bumper sticker. But let’s go back, shall we? October 2001, Fox News Channel, I think Edwards was on with O’Reilly, and the question, ‘When this war widens and it will, and Saddam Hussein comes into play, and maybe Libya, maybe Syria, maybe the Sudan, maybe even Iraq, when all this comes into play, are we going to be as united as we are now?’
EDWARDS: I think we will be united with the president throughout this war on terrorism.
RUSH: (Gasping.) Why, we just used the phrase war on terrorism. This is October 2001. (Gasping.) He just used the phrase war on terror — he’s out there using bumper sticker slogans. Rudy Giuliani heard about this in a campaign trail in New Hampshire and said this.
GIULIANI: When you go so far as to suggest that the global war on terror is a bumper sticker or slogan, it kind of makes the point that I’ve been making over and over again, that the Democrats or at least some of them are in denial.
RUSH: It’s worse than that, Rudy. They’re not in denial. They are attempting to rewrite history, and they are securing defeat. They own it. This is more of Giuliani, from the campaign trail in New Hampshire yesterday.
GIULIANI: Maybe the zeal to criticize President Bush is so great that it means he’s kind of clouded out reality. But that’s kind of dangerous. I mean this global war on terror is going on whether John Edwards recognizes it or not.
RUSH: And then finally Mrs. Clinton was asked on the campaign trail. A reporter says, ‘You fund the war without a plan to bring the troops home.’
HILLARY: Today we’re talking about this very important immigration issue. There will be time to talk about that.
RUSH: Whoa. She’s ducking the whole thing. She ducked the whole question of the Democrats surrendering to surrender, retreating to retreat. Gotta keep these people talking, especially the Breck Girl.