RUSH: This is George Will yesterday on the roundtable of ABC’s This Week. They were talking about Trump and Herman Cain. It’s George Will.
WILL: Between now and 2016 both parties have to do some serious thought as to whether they can develop some filter to prevent this process — particularly with mad proliferation of debates — from being hijacked by charlatans, entrepreneurs, and entrepreneurial charlatans who simply —
AMANPOUR: Who would you label as one of those?
WILL: Well, the one who dropped out, Mr. Cain, who used this as a book tour in a fundamentally disrespectful approach to the selection of presidents. Now we have a December 27 debate proposed that would be moderated by Donald Trump. Surely, it is time for these candidates to do something presidential. Stand up and say, “We’re not gonna be hijacked and participate in that.”
RUSH: All right. Now, what is your initial reaction to that? ‘Cause I have a bit of an alternative view. Cain’s out of the race, so we can “MoveOn.org” from that. Whether he was doing a book tour, trying to up his speech fees, get a cable TV gig, what have you, some people say, “The system worked. George ought to not be as panicked as he is. System worked.” No, it didn’t, because system did not get rid of Obama. The “system” didn’t inform anybody who Obama really was. So now the next thing is, “Okay, you Republican candidates, when you gonna get some gonads? When are you gonna stand up and say, ‘Enough of the circus?’ All these debates are bad enough but now you’re gonna have one moderated by Trump?”
Well, the alternative view is, “When are you Republicans gonna stand up and stop letting all these liberal media outfits moderate your debate? When are you Republican candidates gonna stand up and finally assert that the media is not gonna pick which one of you wins this nomination?” Ergo, what’s so bad about Trump moderating a debate or me or anybody else? Why must these debates be moderated by the Wolf Blitzers and the MSNBC’s of the world for them to have any credibility? Why must these Republican debates be moderated by people who have one objective, and that’s to see that whoever wins this nomination loses? Let me put it a better way: Why should these Republican candidates repeatedly subject themselves to debates moderated by people whose only objective is to see Obama win?
That’s my take on this. I’ve got no brief for Trump; don’t misunderstand. But I don’t find this as reprehensible as George Will does. I’m more alarmed that we have to put up with never-ending debates moderated by people who have as their express purpose the reelection of Barack Obama and the defeat of any of these Republican nominees. Now, I know the other side of this is, “Hey, Rush, the media is what it is. It isn’t going to change,” and I agree with that. I tell people who… (sigh) I get so sick of it. Folks, you can’t believe. I’m surprised I can do this show with a smile. I am so surrounded by negativism, you can’t believe it. (sigh) I went to dinner with some friends last night and I actually started pounding the table, I got so mad. I hadn’t seen ’em in a while and they asked me what’s going on.
said, “I can’t escape the negativism. Where I go, every meal, every e-mail I open is, ‘The media’s killing us! What are you gonna do about it? The media this, the media is that.'” The media is who they are. I understand this. The media is who they are. “The media is not gonna change and so, Rush, having these Republicans participate in debates moderated by these people is good preparation for when they win the White House.” I understand that thinking. They gotta deal with this media. The media is hostile; the media is always gonna be hostile to Republicans. I understand that. But at the same time, it’d be nice, if these Republicans stood up and said, “Let’s do a debate moderated by some friends, just like Obama gets to do.”
Every debate Obama’s gonna be in, every moderator is gonna be one of his friends, every moderator is gonna be oriented towards his reelection, and every moderator is gonna be oriented towards our defeat. These are Republican debates. This is a Republican primary process where, ostensibly, every Republican is trying to put their best foot forward. So this cuts both ways, as far as I’m concerned. You can sit there and lament that Trump’s gonna be moderating a debate but I can also lament the fact that every other debate we’ve had has been moderated by somebody who wants to kill whoever wins this nomination on our side. Moving on. Trump is not happy, obviously. This morning on Fox News Channel they had a discussion about the presidential race. Gretchen Carlson said, “You say that you may throw your hat in the ring again. Is this the way to keep your name alive, sell some books, or are you really serious?”
TRUMP: It’s gonna be a long season, I predict. But I’ll be endorsing somebody, and I hope that person wins — and if that person doesn’t win, then I guess I’m a free agent because as you know the show ends at a certain period of time which is in May, and I’m a free agent; I can do whatever I want. You know, people don’t really that if you have a show you can’t run because of equal time situations, and you’re not allowed to run — which I think is a terrible law.
RUSH: Right. He’s talking about his Apprentice show that ends in May, and he can’t do anything on that show without having it come back to him equal time and so forth. I’m looking for something. Somebody’s written a hilarious piece here. Did I put it at the top of the stack? Somebody has written a hilarious piece that said whatever Republican that’s gone by to visit Trump has ended up dropping out of sight afterwards. (laughing) Newt’s going today (laughing) and every Republican that’s gone in and paid tribute to Trump has seen their numbers plummet shortly after. It’s a humor piece. We’ll see what happens to Newt after he goes and visits trump. Anyway, the next question was from Clayton Morris: “Let’s talk about the debate, Donald, because you took a lot of heat this weekend from entrenched conservatives — George Will among them — who said we need to get away from people like you moderating debates, this party is being hijacked by entrepreneurial charlatans like you and Herman Cain; basically saying he thought your idea moderating a debate was absurd. What do you say to people like that this morning?
TRUMP: I’ve read George Will over the years. He’s third-rate.
TRUMP: He makes so many wrong predictions that if you just follow his predictions you’ll find out he shouldn’t even be doing what he does. I think we’ll have tremendous viewership. We’ll probably get the highest ratings on the debate, which is important when we’re trying to get a message out.
RUSH: What is the network that this is on? Is it the ION network or the EON network? Don’t bother looking it up. Well, I never heard of the network when I saw what it was on. That’s why I can’t remember what it is, but its December 27, two days after Christmas, and Trump is predicting record ratings for this debate. “George Will’s third-rate, shouldn’t be doing what he’s doing.” Now Karl Rove dumps on Trump also on Fox & Friends today. Gretchen Carlson said to Karl Rove, “Okay, we had Trump on earlier today. He’s hosting this debate on December 27th. Two of the candidates have said they’re not gonna take part: Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman. If you, Karl, were advising a candidate, would you advise him to take part in this debate?”
ROVE: They’re all gonna get stuck going to his debate, but it’s really odd. It’s on a cable network that is not well viewed, and it’s gonna be a giant ego trip — and anybody who thinks that Donald Trump is gonna be the equivalent of Bret Baier or any one of the other moderates we’ve had is kidding themselves.
ROVE: If you’re gonna be a candidate, be a candidate. Don’t make it contingent upon whether your show is renewed or not. How trivial is that? How does it trivialize the most important decision that we Americans have which is who we’re gonna elect as our president?
RUSH: Oh, now we’re worried about trivializing the presidential race, or trivializing the election. So, anyway, here we have Will, George Will dumping all over Trump and Cain. Trump comes back and says George Will is “third-rate. Look at his predictions. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about; shouldn’t be doing what he’s doing.” Karl Rove comes back and says if anybody thinks Trump’s gonna be equivalent of somebody who knows what they’re doing that, they have another think coming. So they went back to Trump. (laughing) They called him! Here’s what he said.
TRUMP: Karl Rove gave us George Bush, and George Bush crashed and burned — and because of that we have Obama. And, you know, Karl Rove… I mean the problem that this, frankly, that the Republicans, they have to get rid of the Karl Roves and they need fresh blood because Karl Rove is gonna lead them into doom. Believe me.
RUSH: All right, so here we have… (laughing) Here we have Barack Obama floundering, polls that are under — worse than — Jimmy Carter, and look what’s going on on the Republican side here! Look what’s happening here? George Will goes after Trump and Cain. Trump goes after Will. Then Rove goes after Trump, then they call Trump back at Fox & Friends and Trump goes back after Rove. Look, Rove gave us Bush, and Bush gave us Obama and be these guys don’t know what they’re doing! They’re taking the Republican Party down the hill in a hand basket. If we stick with guys like Rove, we’re being led into doom.
We’re not through. Then on MSNBC, The Daily Rundown today, Chuck Todd interviewed Trump. Todd says, “You wanted to respond to the poll that says more Republicans in Iowa and New Hampshire say that your endorsement in the Republican primary would make ’em less likely to support that candidate.” So F. Chuck Todd says: Hey, Trump, we got polling data here that says anybody you endorse, Republican voters say they will be less likely to support.
TRUMP: Let me just first start by saying that I was watching the show for about two minutes and you said Donald Trump wanted to respond to a poll. Well, I didn’t even know what poll you’re talking about, number one, Chuck. Number two, I didn’t call you. You called me about 40 times —
TODD: Yes, I did. After —
TRUMP: — trying to get me on the show so your statement is false. You said quote, “Donald Trump wanted to respond to a poll.” Well, I didn’t want to respond. Your people called my office about 40 times asking me to go onto the show so it’s dishonest what you’re saying, Chuck. I wish you would just sort of say it like it is. I think you’d do better. I actually think you’d be getting better ratings by doing that. I’m doing NBC a favor by going onto your show.
RUSH: That’s Donald Trump taking it to F. Chuck. You know, this is a typical media ploy. I saw an example of it. I was watching a football game a couple years ago, and I don’t want to embarrass the announcer crew; they’re just football guys, but one of them got all excited. “Hey, look who’s walked in here and asked to say hello! Why, it’s Dick Vermeil, the former coach of the St. Louis Rams,” and Vermeil sat down, “I didn’t ask to come in here. You guys invited me. I was on my way somewhere else; somebody stopped me in the hall,” and the guy said (stammering), “Well, well, well, well, well… Okay. We’re still glad to have you here,” and went on with the question. Vermeil answered the question, and got up and proceeded on down the hall. So apparently MSNBC said Trump called ’em and wanted to talk about this poll when they’ve been calling Trump and they wanted him to answer this poll, which he didn’t know about.
Trump is an NBCer. He says, “Chuck, I’m trying to help you. You’ll get better ratings if you listen to me.” (laughing)
RUSH: Do I have to do everything? I just got an e-mail during the break and I read e-mails during the break. (I told you I read ’em and I do read ’em.) “So, Rush, you tell us all this, what does in between? What does it mean? What does all this to mean? Trump, Rove, George, what does it all mean?” All right, notice who is on the attack. Donald Trump is minding his own business. He’s agreed to moderate a debate on something called the ION network two days after Christmas, right? Just that little thing has set off time bombs within the Republican establishment, and they’re all out attacking Donald Trump for moderating a debate. Simply for moderating a debate, they’re out attacking Trump. So Trump, being who he is, is going on television and making phone calls and defending himself.
Donald Trump is defending himself. We’re not used to this on the Republican side. Our guys usually bend over, grab the ankles, and say, “Here, hit me again. I’m not gonna sully the debate by defending myself,” and Trump doesn’t bend over, grab the ankles. So Trump’s now defending himself. Why? Because the establishment Republicans and the Democrats are attacking him. They’re ganging up on him — as they ganged up on Sarah Palin, as they ganged up on Christine O’Donnell, as they ganged up on Sharron Angle — and, dare I say, as they’re ganging up on Tim Tebow. Not the Republican establishment, but their equivalent in the sports media. You see what’s going on with Tebow is the same thing going on here. Before Tebow got the starting job as the quarterback of the Denver Broncos, everybody who claims to know their salt in football said he can’t succeed.
“He’s horrible, horrible mechanics, college offense, doesn’t have a prayer!” He better fail or they look like fools. He had better fail or they look like fools, and so the media investment is in Tebow failing. In the midst of winning five games in a row. It’s the same thing with Palin, folks. They told us she wasn’t too stupid, too dumb. They had to make sure she failed so that they don’t look like idiots. Ergo, it’s Trump’s turn now. They’re ganging up on Trump. The Republican establishment and the Democrats together are ganging up on Trump as they ganged up on Palin, as they ganged up on O’Donnell and Angle, as the sports media’s ganging up on Tebow — and (sigh), in limited ways, they gang up on me. But I’m just saying how this works. I don’t care about me.
But you see, people are fighting back now. Trump is fighting back. What Trump is saying is, “Hey, Chuck Todd! Hey, Karl Rove! You are not in charge of this election or any other election. Hey, Chuck? You’re an old time Democrat staffer. You don’t get to tell me what to do on your show.” That’s what Trump is doing here. He’s simply fighting back. The Republican establishment — which contains elements of what you and I think of as the conservative media — are trying to beat back anyone who threatens Romney in any way, shape, manner, or form. It’s just that simple. That’s what I make of this. Trump didn’t start anything; he just agreed to moderate a debate! And all hell broke loose.
It took about five minutes and the Sunday shows were organized around it! It’s on some network nobody’s ever heard of, except me, the ION network. It’s channel 305 on DirecTV, FYI; but I don’t have cable so I don’t know if your cable system has it and I don’t know what channel it would be on your cable system. But the Tea Party is like Trump; they don’t care what the Washington socialite, inside-the-Beltway Republicans and Democrats have to say. The Tea Party’s the conservative movement. By the way, Newt and Trump have announced — where is it? — apprenticeships. Newt and Trump have announced apprenticeships for ten needy kids in New York City to help teach them the work ethic in America. Now, stop and think of that. We need a program, a special program to teach ten kids the work ethic, ’cause if you work and earn money, you are the enemy in America today.