CAVUTO: She is a conservative dream thus far — and, boy, doesn’t Rush Limbaugh know it. Now he has been talking up the Alaskan governor for some time now. In Rush’s words, and I quote, ‘Babies. Guns. Jesus. Hot damn!’ I spoke to the radio talk show host just moments ago.
RUSH: She has turned the election upside-down, Neil. She has united a convention. She has united the Republican base. The Republican base, conservative base is more excited and happier than it has been in 14 years, since the Republican victory taking back the House of Representatives in 1993 and 1994. I mean, this is…. I’m calling Senator McCain ‘Senator McBrilliant’ lately, Neil. This was just a brilliant and gutsy choice, and it’s very typical of his fearless approach to things, and it’s a testament to his character.
CAVUTO: All right. Now the question is whether people will rally beyond just the typical Republican base or the conservative base. What do you think?
RUSH: I think Obama and Joe Biden have lots to fear today and they know it, because the answer to your question is her appeal is so broad through all of America. This is an ordinary woman, this is a woman who has not had any help getting where she has arrived. She is authentic. She has a life story that is a rich American life story with hundreds of people to vouch for it, something Obama does not have. He doesn’t have a group of people to speak for his life — that he wants us to hear about. She is, I think, like people we know. We all have known women and mothers like this in our neighborhoods and in our towns. She fights back. They have attacked her kids. They have attacked her. They’re trying to make her look like she’s trailer trash with that Us Weekly cover, and she’s fighting back. I’ll tell you, the last two nights of this convention have just been perfect. They have been flawless; and I hope tonight that the theme continues. I really hope that Senator McCain tonight can set aside just for one night his stump speech remarks about how well he works with Democrats, ’cause right now we want to beat Democrats. I’d love for him to say something like, ‘And, by the way, I’m looking forward to working with Democrats in November — those that are left, anyway.’
RUSH: Keep this momentum going, ’cause I guarantee you, this was totally unexpected by both sides, and it’s just tremendous.
CAVUTO: You know, when you actually read her speech, though, Rush, it’s very populist. It sounds, in a lot of ways very Democrat, when it comes to bashing the oil companies. Of course, she’s had this love-hate relationship with the oil companies in Alaska. She allows them to drill more, but she wants to extract more money from them for that, which is probably good business sense. But there is definitely something populist in reaching out to Democrats and union members with that pitch, that populist pitch that John McCain echoes. So it’s a slippery slope, is it not?
RUSH: Well, it’s not a slippery slope, but you’re very shrewd, Neil, because she does have a lot of populism in her. And with gasoline prices the way they are now, fluctuating and so forth, it’s a big economic concern for people, and I think it’s a smart play. You know, what I look at in a candidate like this is we know we’re not going to get down-the-line perfection. We know we’re not going to get somebody that doesn’t fall off the so-called list, litmus test requirements for somebody being conservative. It’s her character; it is her presence. She’s a natural at this. She’s a genuine, authentic woman who just, I think, sends fear into the entire opposition. Remember, now, Neil, in attacking her the Democrats really do not want to go anywhere near the arena of ideas because they try to hide their ideas from people, mask them with their own version of populism and pandering. So their only recourse is to try to take people out. You know, Obama is from Chicago ‘thug politics,’ as Bill Clinton said, and their theory in Chicago is: You clear the playing field; you don’t level it. And so the idea is going to be: Take her out. I actually think, Neil — I’m going to make a prediction to you — before this is all said and done, it will be the Obama camp looking for a reason to replace Biden with Hillary Clinton or somebody similar.
CAVUTO: Hmm! Well, let me ask you. You were one of the early urgers, if you will, to tell Republicans, ‘Get off defense. Be on offense,’ and early on — I think before anybody, Rush — you were saying, ‘This gas issue, this energy issue is a signature Republican issue.’ Now that oil prices and gas prices are declining; ironically, do you think that they’re hurt? In other words, Republicans are hurt by that?
RUSH: No, I don’t. Because they’re still way higher than they were on a percentage basis just a short time ago, and they could very easily go back up with one comment from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or one move by the Russians, Putin. I think the American people understand here that the problem is that we are not as self-sufficient in energy resources as we should be, regardless what the price is, because there’s always the future. We’re smart enough to figure out that we’re a growing economy, and so is the world, and it’s going to be using more energy. Conservation and tire gauges and properly inflated tires are not a substitute for growth in energy resources. And they know that we’ve got a tremendous amount of resources that we’re not exploiting, and there’s one party standing in the way of it, and that’s the Democrat Party. And I’ll tell you why: for purposes of winning elections, Neil, they want as much suffering — economic suffering and misery and anger — as they can muster, and then they want to steer that anger toward Republicans and George W. Bush. So, all this talk about how they’re really sorry that the American people are suffering at the pump? They secretly like it.
CAVUTO: Could I ask you just a curious question I’ve always wondered about. Knowing of your past — and you’ve said it on the air — tense relationship with John McCain, have you two talked directly since? In other words, when it looked like he had the nomination and everything was solidifying around him, I know you rallied around him. There were other conservatives who did not. You chose to rally around him, and that brought other conservatives along the line. But have you two talked?
CAVUTO: Have you two discussed things?
CAVUTO: Does he call you? Do you him?
RUSH: He hasn’t called, and I haven’t called. I don’t think it’s necessary. But I would. I mean, I would love to have the opportunity to personally pass along my hopes for what happens at the convention tonight, but I’m not presumptuous enough to do that. It’s their show, and I can sit here and hope as an analyst or pundit that they do it the way I would do it. But I just came to the conclusion that this country, in two ways, cannot afford Barack Obama. We can’t afford Obama economically, and we can’t afford what Obama represents in terms of a desire to redefine what Americanism is. This is another great value of Sarah Palin, by the way. This is a battle, this election. You know, a presidential election is the closest thing we get to a national referendum on the future of the country, and the forces in opposition to each other here are the people who want to defend Americanism as defined by our founding — with the foundation being freedom and individual liberty — versus forces that want to redefine Americanism as built around an ever-growing state that takes care of more and more dependent people because the people that run the state don’t think people are capable of handling their own problems. This is another way that Sarah Palin just nails the liberal philosophy of life. It’s all great, Neil. It is all great. We’re jazzed here. We really are.
CAVUTO: All right. This is an issue I want you to be jazzed about as I leave you, Rush. Would you be open, hypothetically, to let’s say a prominent financial TV anchor who works at Fox investing your hundreds of millions that are part of your deal now and getting back to you in thirty years?
RUSH: (laughing) Neil, I have so much trust in you because you —
RUSH: Well, you’ve done it. You’ve demonstrated it. You know it. By the way, your — and I don’t want to embarrass you here, but I watch your show. Your commentaries at the end of your program are right on the money. You’re a real treasure. They’ve got a real find in you. I’d be happy to invest and give you everything I’ve got. I’d come back to you in ten years not thirty. (laughing)
RUSH: But, sure.
CAVUTO: I’d try, I’d try. All right. Very good to have you on, Rush. Be well. Congratulations again on that deal. Rush Limbaugh.
RUSH: Thank you, Neil, very much. It’s always a pleasure to be here.