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RUSH: Fort Walton Beach, Florida. This is Paul. Glad you waited, sir. Welcome to the program.

CALLER: A pleasure to speak with you, Rush.

RUSH: Thank you.

CALLER: The primaries so far have conclusively shown that Governor Romney has a major southern problem. Out of six southern states that have held primaries, Senator Santorum has won four, Speaker Gingrich has won one, and Governor Romney has won one. And the one that Romney won was Virginia, where Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum weren’t even on the ballot.

RUSH: That’s true.

CALLER: And that’s a story all in itself. But if we just look at the vote totals in the six southern states… Well, let’s say five and not worry about Virginia since Newt and Rick weren’t present for one reason or another. Governor Romney’s percentage of the vote ranged from a low of 26% in Georgia to a high of 31% in Mississippi. Now, that’s consistency, and the non-Romney vote ranged from a low of 66% in Mississippi to a high of 73% in Georgia, so this goes beyond being a problem. This is almost a deal breaker. Because if Governor Romney becomes the Republican nominee, since 1984 no Republican has been elected president without sweeping the southern states. I’m talking about the 11 contiguous southern states that are traditionally considered the South.

RUSH: Yes.

CALLER: And also, the last Republican to be elected president who lost more than one southern state was Richard Nixon in 1968. So we’re looking at a major historical trend here that Governor Romney would have to reverse.

RUSH: All right.

CALLER: Unless he were to really pick up the pace in the South, and there’s no indication he’s gonna do that.

RUSH: Well, let me share with you something I just saw today. Where did I see this? I think it was from the John Locke Foundation blog in North Carolina. I don’t have it in front of me. I was just looking for it while you were speaking. I thought I had printed it out but I didn’t so I have to do this off the top of my head, but that’s a pretty good piece and I think I’ve got this down pat. Here’s the theory. The theory is that the swing state in this election is going to be North Carolina, that Obama cannot win without it no matter what else he does.

Now, just follow me on this. I’m just telling what’s out there. That’s the reason Obama’s headed in there every other day. That’s why the convention is there. They won it in ’08 but they’re having problems now. And furthermore, the theory goes that this election is going to turn on 45,000 people in the Raleigh-Durham what is called The Triangle Area. These 45,000 people are upper middle-class families that make $75,000 a year, and they are apolitical. They are not committed Democrats or Republicans. But the way they line up is how this election is going to turn out. And the theory that’s espoused in this piece is that the only Republican these people are gonna vote for is Mitt Romney.

Without giving you all the detailed reasons, it has to do with the fact that they’re not political. It’s not that they’re moderates. It’s just that they’re apolitical. But, if at the time something comes along — and if, for example, the social issues are being discussed — whoever they perceive as being most aggressive, they’ll vote against. Whoever they perceive being most aggressive on the economy, they’ll vote against. These are people that are hands off. They distrust politicians and political people, and for whatever reason… Now, during the break I’m gonna print this out and I’m gonna get all the answers to the questions that you have as you listen to me explain this.

CALLER: Well, with all due respect to the authors of the study that you reference, the overwhelming results of the primaries — where Governor Romney’s high was 31% and he’s in the high sixties and low seventies in non-Romney votes — would seem to refute the thesis of the study that everything hinges on North Carolina. Plus, remember, Senator McCain in his losing effort in 2008 lost three southern states: Virginia, North Carolina and Florida. So what happened to Senator McCain in the 2008 election verifies, okay, what I just said about the Republican candidate, to have a realistic chance of being elected president, has to sweep the South.

RUSH: Well, this piece is from the American Spectator, but they quote research from John Locke Foundation. It’s an American Spectator article. And I think, as I’m watching Obama and the Democrats, they know something that we don’t. And the fact that Obama is in there all the time and Michelle is in there? Everybody talks about Ohio and some of these other battlegrounds. I think North Carolina is the state. That’s why they were flipped for a wig when the governor decided she wasn’t gonna run. When Beverly Perdue said she wasn’t going to seek reelection, that panicked them in the White House, and the southern… I don’t dispute what you’re saying at all about Romney’s performance in these southern states in the primaries here. But he’s gonna get better than 31% when the general comes around, and Republicans are voting against Obama as much as they’re voting for Romney or anybody else.

CALLER: Oh, he’ll get more than 31%, but the problem is the historical trend, going back 44 years is, that the Republican nominee must sweep the South or at the most lose one state.

RUSH: But that’s the point. That’s the point of this piece in the Spectator. Throw that out. When has it ever been that North Carolina has mattered as much? It never has.

CALLER: Well, the Democrats are acting on the subject we’re just talking about, that the South is the key. It is the doorway to the presidency for the Republican nominee, and Governor Romney is the least electable of all the Republican candidates in the current field to carry the South.

RUSH: Yeah, but see, you’re not… (sigh) We’re not communicating. I’m telling you that this piece said. Maybe… I’m sure you disagree with the piece, and feel free to. I’m not trying to tell you it’s accurate. I’m just sharing with you something out there that contravenes the-age-old statistical data that you are citing. And this piece says throw all that out, that it’s North Carolina and it’s 45,000 highly educated employees that make an average salary of 75 grand. They work in Research Triangle Park, their counterparts are in Charlotte, and they’re 100% Democrat.

There has been a shift — a political population shift — in North Carolina. So the question for November will be (this is from the piece): “‘Who can reach out to these educated, upscale people who are going to be the deciding voters in North Carolina that are gonna decide the election?’ The answer for Republicans is very clear: Mitt Romney’s main appeal is to those upscale voters.” Now, I’m telling you this because piece also says, Paul, that the Republican hierarchy believes this, and that is why they are so tied to Romney is because of the kind of people he’ll get voting for him from there. I’m just saying.


RUSH: Paul in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, I know you’re still out there. The original piece from which I was excerpting is in the American Spectator. It’s by William Tucker. It’s out yesterday. It’s called, “Election Year Math.” It prints out to four pages. Basically, Tucker says it’s all gonna come down to three states that went for Obama last time. They are: North Carolina, Colorado, and Virginia. Those are the three states, according to William Tucker’s “Election Year Math.” North Carolina, Virginia, and Colorado. Now, the actual piece that I was excerpting is entitled “The Final (And Most Important) Presidential Battleground: North Carolina,” which was also posted yesterday by Tara Servatius of the Meck Deck blog in Charlotte.

And she starts out by saying: “This American Spectator piece is dead on. Few people fully realize how pivotal North Carolina is to President Obama’s reelection. North Carolina will likely be the most pivotal battleground state in the nation this year, or one among just three,” and there’s a map that accompanies this piece. We’ll link to this at RushLimbaugh.com today so you can see it yourself. We’ll link to this piece and William Tucker’s “Election Year Math” at American Spectator. “If Obama wins all the states [John] Kerry…” who, by the way, served in Vietnam. “If Obama wins all the states Kerry won in 2004 … all he needs to get to 269 electoral votes is North Carolina and Virginia or North Carolina and Colorado.”

Now, according to this map, “If Obama wins all the states Kerry won in 2004, which as you can see is almost guaranteed to happen given how liberal they are…” So there’s a big assumption here. The assumption in this piece is that Obama’s gonna win everything that Kerry won in 2004. He’s one electoral vote short at 269. So he’s going to need either North Carolina and Virginia or North Carolina and Colorado. And Tara Servatius writes here: “‘[T]he final battleground is likely to be North Carolina, Virginia and Colorado. Democrats figured this out long ago. ThatÂ’s why theyÂ’re holding their convention in Charlotte,'” the Spectator article says.

“Who in North Carolina will decide which way the country goes and whether Obama is shown the exit? ‘The more than 45,000 highly educated employees that make an average salary of $75,000…’ and work in Research Triangle Park. And of course, their counterparts in Charlotte.” Now, if I may pause for a moment and make a brief observation. Now that at that these 45,000 highly educated people know how important they are, all bets are off. That’s the one thing about reporting this. It’s sort of like my big problem with independents. I don’t have a problem with independents personally, but every year we’re told that independents are gonna determine who wins.

Not the 40% that go Democrat or 40% that go Republican. We’re told the people that haven’t made up their minds, we’re told that people who aren’t partisan, we’re told that people who moderate and open-minded decide. I have rejected this. It has bothered me ever since I’ve been old enough to understand what this is. I think partisan, motivated, energetic, enthusiastic people determine who wins elections, and therefore whoever can go convince most of the independents to join them is gonna win. Now, the problem with that is that the independents know this! And so the independents have a little arrogance about them sometimes.

They think, “Well, we’re the ones that really count.” So they’re the ones that hold out. “Okay, who’s gonna give me the most?” and that breaks down the whole system, when the vote for president or anything is determined on: “Who’s gonna give me the most?” Now, we’ve got a piece, and I am making this the biggest piece in the country today. Because I am talking about it, this whole country is now going to know that there is a theory that 45,000 people who work at Research Triangle Park are gonna determine who the president is. Whether that’s true or not, these 45,000 people now might think that it’s up to them. So what are they going to demand?

You know, now that this has been publicized, every political person in the world is gonna beat tracks to get there. They already are is the point of the piece. The Democrats already are. The Democrats are already in North Carolina, in there and out of there as often as they can get. They’re having their convention in Charlotte, and they’re wooing and working on these people that work at this place. But the counterparts over in Charlotte, let’s not forget about them for a second. And here’s something. “Not said in the article is this. The reason that just 45,000 voters in the Triangle now have such power is because of the roughly 100,000 new black voters the Charlotte area picked up over the last decade.

“These solidly Democratic voters turned the state from red in presidential elections to purple and set it up to tilt.” These 100,000 new arrivals (that’s how much Charlotte’s population has grown: 100,000 new black voters) have turned the state from red to purple. “Now it is young professionals” over in Research Triangle Park who will either go along with them or provide the counter. Continuing further: “These newly successful people,” these 45,000 highly educated employees in Research Triangle Park, “have become the pivotal bloc that swings the state between Republicans and Democrats.”

This is what I was telling you last hour. “They are not committed to either party. They are not terribly involved with social issues. Their main worry is the economy. If Republicans make birth control and separation of church and state the major issue, they will go Democratic. If the Democrats mess up the economy and produce $4.50 gas and 8.3% unemployment, they will swing Republican. That will probably decide the 2012 election.” Now, I am always leery of anybody who tells Republicans to steer away from social issues because what I know is: They secure victory. So I don’t want you to think that I sign on to this.

To me, it’s a little bit much to sit here and accept that the votes of 45,000 people are gonna swing this presidential race. It could happen, but now that they know it? This is like turning a camera on ’em. When you take a television camera somewhere, you forever alter what otherwise would normally happen there. You put a TV camera on a street corner and I guarantee everybody starts playing to it. Okay, same thing. These 45,000 people have now been told that they are gonna determine who the next president is. Can you imagine how that is going to affect them? And can you imagine the kind of targets they’re gonna be? In fact, I think this story kind of blows the whole theory now since this cannot happen under the radar.

Now that everybody knows or is going to suspect or a lot of people are gonna operate under the theory that these 45,000 people determine it, everything that was natural about this is gone now. It’s all fake, phony, contrived. Now, let me keep reading, though, from the piece. “And who is the man the Spectator,” William Tucker, “says Republicans should send to fight the fight? That would be Mitt Romney, hands down says the Spectator, an interesting point of view, again,” says this blogger, “for a hard right publication.” The American Spectator is a conservative publication. It is not “hard right.” It’s mainstream conservative.

“‘So the question for November will be this: “Who can reach out to these educated, upscale people who are going to be the deciding votes in the few states that are going to decide the election?” The answer for Republicans is very clear. Mitt Romney’s main appeal is to these upscale voters. In every primary, he has run best in urban and suburban areas. He appeals to people with a college education, he appeals to women, he appeals to the more affluent. These voters are not scared by his Mormonism but they are put off by social issues and are worried about the economy. Romney scores well on all counts.’ Now all youÂ’ve got to do is watch NC polls to figure out which way this thing will go…”

Well, as I say, I think now that the spotlight is on these 45,000 people, they’re not gonna behave naturally anymore. I think that this has a tendency now to forever alter the natural state these people are in. Imagine you were one of these 45,000, and the most-listened-to radio talk show in the country has just told the world that you are going to determine who is going to win the presidency. All pretense at normalcy is over. These people are no longer living anonymously. So I don’t know if the theory is going to hold up now. The whole point here is throw everything out. This is Mr. Tucker’s theory: Throw all this stuff out about Ohio and Florida being swing states. Throw all this southern stuff out. Of course Romney’s not gonna lose the South once he’s the nominee, if he is. The Republican nominee is gonna win the South.

This is absurd to think otherwise.


RUSH: Now, I should point out, the original piece by William Tucker, “Election Year Math,” focuses on three states. North Carolina is one of them. The blogger, who culls pieces from the “Election Year Math” piece by William Tucker who I also read from, focuses much more on North Carolina ’cause she is in Charlotte. She’s local. So she focuses much more on what he says about North Carolina. But his piece doesn’t focus on North Carolina as much as the blog does, and we’ll link to both of them at RushLimbaugh.com. But, again, now, this all assumes — and there’s so many assumptions here, and they’re all risky — it all assumes that North Carolina ends up being the key.

If Romney cannot win the base in these states, these 45,000 won’t matter, and there are a lot of people. Romney is apparently running some ads, and I’ve gotten e-mails today from people just fed up, they’re tired of the never-ending parade of negative ads Romney’s running. I’m just sharing with you what I’m getting. Some of these negative ads are starting to turn people off. They’re not all that effective. So Romney is going to have to win the base before these 45,000 matter. He’s gonna have to get the base out in North Carolina for those 45,000.

This is my argument every time people tell us we gotta focus on the independents. The independents are fine and dandy, but if you don’t get your base out… and how do you do that? You get ’em out with your core principles. You get ’em out with boldness and confidence and good cheer, enthusiasm. If you can’t get your base out, you get every independent voter in the world and you’re not gonna win. Focusing on independents first is the way to lose this. That’s what the Republican establishment does. They’re embarrassed of the Republican base.

So, in addition to that, it’s not a question of Romney winning or losing the South. He’s gonna win the South but he needs to crush people there to offset the popular vote elsewhere. Virginia and North Carolina are less reliable. Romney’s gonna need the base to turn out big in November for these 45,000 in North Carolina to matter, to be a factor or for the independents to be a factor. If anybody wants to take anything away from this, 45,000 equals, as far as I’m concerned, the independents. If you don’t get your base out all the rest of it’s academic. Got to get your base. That’s why Obama’s doing all this crazy Keystone pipeline stuff and his green energy stuff is because he knows that’s what his base wants to hear.


RUSH: Yeah, this contraception nonsense that the Democrats have been playing, this supposed Republican war on women, that’s Obama trying to get his base whipped up. All this nonsense for the past two weeks on me — well, it is about getting rid of me, but it’s also about firming up his base. That’s all he’s doing ’cause he’s in trouble with his base. He’s in trouble with women. He’s in trouble everywhere. Panic has set in in the White House. Don’t doubt me on this. They know they don’t have a prayer if they can’t get his base back, and that’s what they’re trying to do, and we’re gonna make the same mistake if we try to go after independents first.

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