RUSH: Orlando in Miami, Florida, nice to have you, sir, on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Good afternoon, Maha Rushie. Greetings from south Florida. I’m a legal Cuban immigrant who applied for American citizenship the very first day I was able to do that back in 1974.
RUSH: Congratulations, sir.
CALLER: I’m a proud American citizen. This is the best country in the world.
RUSH: Thank you, sir, very much.
CALLER: And to prove it is that the whole world wants to come here, not many of us want to get out.
RUSH: I don’t know anybody that wants to get out. The liberals threaten to leave, but they never do.
CALLER: Yes, that’s what I’m saying. That’s the proof of how good we are. Now, we, your students, hear you day after day exposing Dingy Harry’s real estate unethical deals, Mrs. Clinton’s unethical campaign funds must be deals, too. And unfortunately, I have seen several presidential campaigns here, and I’m afraid that when the real debate becomes real between the real candidates, the Republican candidate will not expose all the things you say, and the left will continue to get away with murder.
RUSH: Well, look, I understand this defensive nature that Republicans have. It still exists in a lot of people’s minds that the Democrats are aces; that they are in total control; they get everything done; they never goof up; they never screw up; they never make mistakes; they’re going to outsmart Republicans at every turn and Republicans aren’t going to have the guts to call Mrs. Clinton on the fundraising. I don’t think that’s true here. I think in the case of Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani, and McCain especially, given his love for McCain-Feingold, and whoever, you know, Fred Thompson, I think, folks, we have not seen the kind of campaign we are going to see next year. And because of the front-loaded nature of these primaries, we could possibly have the nominees in both parties chosen by February or March.
It’s going to be a long drawn-out knockout slugfest, and we can’t predict the direction the filth will fly, the dirt will go. But if Rudy’s the nominee, make no mistake, they’re already hammering Hillary. This whole debate last night was about Hillary. I don’t think our guys are going to shy away from it at all. In fact, I think most of our guys in the Republican field want to run against Hillary precisely because of things like this, because it is a gold mine, it’s a golden opportunity. She already has 49% or 50% negatives. So I think that this is something that they’re looking at as made-to-order. I’m going to use your call here, Orlando, as a transition into some of these debate sound bites. We first have Fred Thompson here. The question from Chris Wallace, ‘Senator Thompson, have these two guys,’ meaning Mitt and Rudy, ‘convinced you that you are wrong and that, in fact, they are both consistent conservatives?’
THOMPSON: Actually, Mitt, I didn’t know there was any room to the left of Ted Kennedy, but maybe there… (laughter) In fact, I didn’t know there was any room to the right of him, either, but maybe… (laughter) I was conservative as soon as I put down ‘Conscience of a Conservative’ when I was in college. Mayor Giuliani believes in federal funding for abortion. He believes in sanctuary cities. He’s for gun control. He supported Mario Cuomo, a liberal Democrat, against a Republican who was running for governor; then opposed the governor’s (bell) tax cuts when he was there. So I simply disagree with him on those issues. And he sides with Hillary Clinton on each of those issues I just mentioned.
RUSH: So they actually started debating each other as to who is the real conservative, who is more conservative. Chris Wallace says, ‘Mr. Giuliani, how do you respond?’
GIULIANI: Fred has his problems, too. (laughter) I mean, Fred, was the single biggest obstacle to tort reform in the United States Senate. He stood with Democrats over and over again. He voted against $250,000 caps on damages, which they have in Texas. He voted against almost anything that would make our legal system fairer, ‘loser pays’ rules, things that would prevent lawsuits like that $54 million lawsuit by the guy who lost his pants, you know?
RUSH: So they went after each other on this. I thought they all were good last night. I thought that it was a pretty interesting debate because it was more like a debate finally. By the way, news flash, we’re hearing a rumor that the subject matter of Osama Bin Laden’s new audiotape is, in fact, the SCHIP program, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, and how that money could better be spent from Iraq, take it from Iraq and spend on that program. Later on in the debate, Chris Wallace said to Mitt Romney, ‘Governor, is Hillary Clinton fit to be commander-in-chief?’
ROMNEY: The idea that someone wants to be president who’s never worked in the private sector, is really a big question mark. She hasn’t run a corner store; she hasn’t run a state; she hasn’t run a city; she has never run anything. And the idea that she could learn to be president, you know, as an internship just doesn’t make any sense.
RUSH: So this is when the attacks on Hillary then began. Chris Wallace said, ‘Governor Romney says Republicans aren’t going to beat Hillary Clinton by acting like Hillary Clinton. And the point seems to be that on a lot of social issues, like abortion and gay rights and gun control, that there’s not much difference between you, Mayor Giuliani, and Hillary Clinton. Is there?’
GIULIANI: You gotta be kidding. (laughter) You have got to be kidding. Wait a second. There are two things I agree with Hillary Clinton on. First of all, we’re both Yankee fans. Well, wait a second, I became a Yankee fan growing up in New York. She became a Yankee fan growing up in Chicago. Do you believe that? Second, she made a statement last week, and I’ve been very critical of her, but I want to tell her I agree with this. Quote Hillary Clinton: ‘I have a million ideas. America cannot afford them all.’ I’m not making it up. One more time: ‘I have a million ideas. America can’t afford them all.’ No kidding, Hillary. America can’t afford you.
RUSH: Yay! And the applause went on, and on, and on. So, you see, it was a spirited debate, and the focus really was on Mrs. Clinton after they had the debates over who’s the real conservative. But the conclusion that I drew from watching this is that nobody is afraid of her in this field, and they’re eager to run up against somebody with as much baggage as she obviously has. This fundraising thing, the Republicans are going to use it when it’s time. Remember, folks, the election is not for a year, a little over a year.
RUSH: Let’s get McCain — let’s be fair — on the Republican presidential debate last night. Many people think this was the line of the night. Chris Wallace, the moderator, said, ‘Senator McCain, you’re running the closest to Clinton, but you still trail her by three points in our latest poll. The biggest issue between the two of you, clearly, is the war in Iraq. You strongly support the troop surge; she wants to start pulling the troops out. Is that a winner for Republicans in 2008?’
MCCAIN: The debate that I have between me and her will be based on national security, on fiscal conservatism, and on social conservatism. It will be a respectful debate. That’s what the American people want. In case you missed it, a few days ago, Senator Clinton tried to spend $1 million on the Woodstock Concert Museum. Now, my friends, I wasn’t there. I’m sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. (laughter) I was tied up at the time. (laughter)
RUSH: Meaning he was in the Hanoi Hilton, is what he means by ‘tied up’ when Mrs. Clinton now wants to celebrate what was going on at Woodstock. A lot of people think that was a great line — and it was. No question about it. Huckabee, he was probably at his best, too, last night talking about Hillary. Chris Wallace said, ‘Governor Huckabee, I’m sorry to say we didn’t call the horse race between you and Senator Clinton, but you say that she’ll win next November if the Republican Party doesn’t do a better job of reaching out to minorities.’
HUCKABEE: There’s nothing funny about Hillary Clinton being president. (applause) Let me tell you why. If she’s president, taxes go up, health care becomes the domain of the government, spending goes out of control; our military loses its morale, and I’m not sure we’ll have the courage and the will and the resolve to fight the greatest threat this country’s ever faced in Islamofascism. (smattering of applause) We’ve got an enemy that wants to kill every last one of us. We cannot be soft. We must be strong. We’ll sign crazy bills like the Law of the Sea Treaty and give away our sovereignty, and that’s why with all the fun we’re going to have talking about it, there’s nothing funny about Hillary being president.
RUSH: There you have it. That’s Mike Huckabee talking about Clinton. You see what I mean? All these guys last night were really on their game. They were to-the-point last night. I’ll give you an example. When I was in Philadelphia on Thursday night, the 11th, I was in a riff on Hillary and the Democrats. I stopped myself in the middle of the riff. That always grabs the audience’s attention. They think I lost my place. ‘Oh, no! Is something wrong?’ I stopped. Of course I never lose my place.
I said, ‘Folks, does it frustrate you as much as it does me, that we don’t hear this kind of thing — the things that I’m saying about the Democrats and Mrs. Clinton — spoken by Republican presidential candidates?’
They stood up and they cheered and so forth. Well, now all of a sudden, we’re starting to get from these candidates the kind of statements that reflect the views of people who are going to vote for them, one of them who wins the nomination. You know, rather than the policy wonk stuff. This was the best one of the night last night — and, of course, it’s happening on Fox, and Chris Wallace did a good moderator job. He turned these guys into each other. They were actually debating each other. It was a debate. It wasn’t a glorified press conference. This is the network that the Democrats refused to appear on, I think maybe because they’re a little afraid of it, but it’s also because they just don’t want to validate Fox as a legitimate news organization. Now, Rudy continued to hit on Iran. Wendell Goler, who was one of the moderators from Fox News said, ‘Mayor Giuliani, given our experience in Iraq, does the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran worry you more than the prospect of going to war with Iran?’
GIULIANI: Well, there’s no question that the idea of going to war with Iran or even taking military action against Iran, would be very dangerous. It would be something you would not want to do. It would be a last resort, but if you’re asking me the question, which is more dangerous, a nuclear-armed Iran is more dangerous — and I think our taking the strong position here would be similar to the difference between Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter, when he was dealing with Iran. Jimmy Carter had hostages for 444 days. In one hour, the Iranians released the hostages and they saw something different in Ronald Reagan’s eyes than in Jimmy Carter’s eyes.
RUSH: The crowd went nuts on that, too. See, people want partisanship. Our side wants to hear what these people are saying about the Democrats. Does this not tell you…? By the way, the tone of this debate and some of the bites that I played for you…? I made a prediction that this presidential election is going to be based and centered, not on the war in Iraq per se, as the theme or the number-one issue. It’s going to be about the future of the country and where people like Hillary will take it and where people like guys on our side will take it. That’s going to be the fundamental debate. That’s going to be the fundamental thing that this presidential campaign is about. So on CBS on the Early Show today, the co-host Hannah Storm talked with CBS Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer, and she said, ‘Bob, who won the I-am-the-most-conservative prize last night at the…?’ with derision and so forth and so on. ‘Who won the I-am-the-most-conservative last night at the debate?’
SCHIEFFER: Well, it was a contest as they all tried to accuse each other as who was the most like Hillary Clinton. (snickers) You know, I was thinking about this, Hannah. Herbert Hoover, the Republican president, presided over the Great Depression. Franklin Roosevelt started running against Herbert Hoover in 1932, and three decades later Democrats were still running against Herbert Hoover. I think for the Republicans, Hillary Clinton has become the new Herbert Hoover. As you saw last night, they all want to run against Hillary Clinton. They accused each other of being like Hillary Clinton. I came away from this debate wondering, ‘What would they do without her?’
RUSH: You know, that is just stunning, because, Bob, I’m going to tell you something: Half of the Democrats in this country that are going to go vote for president in November next year are going to be shocked when they see that George W. Bush’s name is not on the ballot. Who the hell are the Democrats so in love with running against? Who have they been running against? They’re still running against Bush; he’s not even on the ballot! Herbert Hoover was on the ballot. These guys are not on the ballot, Bush isn’t. They can’t stand it when people attack Hillary. They just can’t stand it, folks! They just can’t stand it so they gotta mock Republicans, make fun of them and all that. Back to the phones quickly, Ron in Portland, Oregon, thanks for waiting, sir, you’re on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Thank you for taking my call. Listen, John McCain is too old, he talks too slow, and he’s too friendly with Hillary. He said last night he respected Hillary. He’s going to have a respectable debate with Hillary. We don’t want that. The country doesn’t want that. Here’s the gal that’s taking money from Chinese dishwashers that John McCain was supposed to fix, and he respects her! Remember, John McCain was considered by John Kerry to be his running mate. Anybody that is that close to those guys, is no friend of mine.
RUSH: Well, I noticed. It caught my ears when McCain said he was going to have ‘a debate with Hillary, a spirited debate, but it will be a respectful debate. That’s what the American people want.’ You know what that is, Ron? That’s just Senate-speak. ‘My good friend Harry Reid… My wonderful colleague Daniel Akaka…’ That’s all this decorum that exists in the Senate and so forth by rule. You’ll note that… Do you know who the last senator elected president was in this country? Take a wild guess. It was John F. Kennedy, right, in 1960. That’s the last time a US Senator has been elected president here. It’s because these guys don’t delegate. They’re in charge of everything; their egos are out of control and that means they can’t delegate to be able to say staffs very well. Their staffs start screwing things up. Hillary is pretty good at delegating because she’s had the war room all along but she’s intimately involved in it as well.
But this ‘respectful debate’ and so forth is simply Senate speak, and I don’t know whether the American people want a disrespectful debate, but they don’t want phony nice. That’s a myth. ‘The American people are sick of partisanship. The American people want to return to civility.’ All that is, folks, is that’s liberal jive, and what that means is, ‘We’ve gotta shut Republicans and conservatives up. We just have to shut ’em up,’ because they, in their estimation, it is impossible for them to participate in or create or be responsible for any lack of civility or any partnership. It’s going to be the all Republicans. So when you hear people talk like this, it just means that Republicans have to shut up. So when McCain says it will be a civil debate and respectful debate, Republicans cringe over that because they know that Hillary isn’t going to be polite. She might be polite on stage; she might be polite when they have debates, but the campaign is not going to be polite. Nothing about it is going to be polite. Most campaigns aren’t. Learn it, love it, live it. Get used to it!