RUSH: It has. I mean, no question about it. There’s no question this Rand Paul business has totally upset the power structure in Washington, the Senate particularly. Low-information outreach working, successful. We have audio sound bite proof coming up. We are loaded today. McCain has called senators Paul and Cruz “wacko birds.” Senator McCain is calling them wacko birds because of the filibuster.
RUSH: We got more on Rand Paul and the sequester, and the filibuster.
There is — I can’t tell you because I would be betraying confidences — but I’m telling you the power structure there has been totally turned upside down, in the Senate and in Washington. Even members of the Drive-By Media are talking about how they sense something major has changed here. All it really was, and the reason why it stands out, one guy stood up and dared challenge the regime. When you boil it all down, that’s what happened. That’s how absent that kind of behavior has been. I mean, it’s important it went for 13 hours, but still, somebody did it. Somebody challenged the administration and they’re alive today to talk about it, and they’re heroes. They’re heroes.
I’ll tell you who else upset by this, and I’ll explain this as the program unfolds. The neocons are paranoid. The neocones are paranoid because Rand Paul comes from his father’s gene pool. This isolationist wing is worried about maybe there’s something more going on here than simply opposing drone strikes. There’s all kinds of ramifications. Well, they might think he’s a kook, but they’re worried that he’s a kook that nobody thinks is a kook, and so they’ll follow him. He’s a stealth kook.
It’s their thinking. I don’t think this. I’m answering questions from the eager beaver staff here, who love getting me in trouble, by the way. It’s entertaining for them.
RUSH: Ventura, California. Dale, thank you so much for calling. Great to have you on the program, sir.
CALLER: Hello, Rush. I’m calling about Lindsey Graham and John McCain. I am really ticked off as a veteran the way John McCain and Lindsey Graham have basically sold out somebody that they should have supporting. They went and had a nice party with Obama, then they come back down to the floor of the Senate and act like his attack dogs. They may be calling it bipartisan, but in the old days — John McCain will be well aware of this term — it’s called being a collaborator. They need to quit straddling the fence, land on one side or the other, ’cause the people are sick and tired of it. You know, it’s getting to be too much. They are not working for us. They really need to go back to the floor of the Senate, maybe make a public apology to Rand Paul. They need to make an apology to Marco Rubio, to Cruz, and I can’t remember the name of the Democrat that also came out and supported, ’cause this is just back-stabbing gone way beyond the pale.
RUSH: You are more right than you know. And you’re pretty right. And you know you’re pretty right. This incident, the Rand Paul filibuster, has turned things upside down in Washington. And McCain’s behavior is Exhibit A in this. What happened? McCain and a bunch of other Republicans decide to go to dinner with Obama on Tuesday night. Now, I don’t pretend to know why the Republicans did it, but I know why Obama did it. He wanted the photo-op and he wants to make it look like he’s cooperating, because the people are not buying this sequester argument of his. It’s not working. The country coming to an end, all falling apart, and Republicans being blamed for it isn’t working. There’s a big, huge backlash, in fact, going on.
For example, the CDC has confirmed that the White House has been caught in a lie about child vaccinations in the sequester. “Congressman Andy Harris, M.D., R-Md., confronted Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), about misleading statements made by the White House. The confrontation occurred during an oversight hearing for the Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services.”
So what’s happening here is that McCain and others are complaining that Rand Paul is out abusing Senate rules and is appealing to extreme, kooky Libertarians in their college dorms, while everybody else sees an assault on freedom and liberty and the economy and everything else taking place, and they see the Republicans sitting at the same table of the guy who’s doing it. Who are they siding with? And this has got the old bulls upset. So they go out and they dine with the architect of this disaster, who is intentionally inflicting pain on the American people via his sequester. That’s the point of it.
They go out and dine with this guy, who still will not tell them what he was doing when Americans were dying in Benghazi, for example. But he wants the photo-op, and they of course, listening to the Republicans, listening to their consultants, think that they’re making great gains by appearing bipartisan here, which is not what the people that vote for them want.
There has been such an upside down turning of the power structure. Our office is getting phone calls begging us not to lump certain Republicans in with the ones we’re criticizing. “Hey, don’t talk about me. I wasn’t at that dinner. Don’t talk about me. I came out and I stood up with Rand Paul.” There has been a major, major shift here. There’s more to it than you can see inside the power structure in Washington, inside the Republican Party. And for McCain now to come call these guys kooks and wackos illustrates exactly what’s wrong.
But here’s the substance of this. There is a fear among McCain, Lindsey Graham, and others who favor an interventionist foreign policy. Think of the neocons. Think of going into Iraq and not just securing Iraq, but building a democracy. Nation building, if you will. Think of the outbreak of the Arab Spring and the people on our side who thought, “Wow, this is wonderful. This is the outbreak of American democracy,” when it wasn’t. It was the exact opposite. Rand Paul, they’re asking themselves, is he his father’s son or is he on his own here? They’re worried that he’s his father’s son. They’re worried that Rand Paul is an isolationist. They’re worried that Rand Paul’s diatribe on drones really means that Rand Paul wants to bring the military home and not use it unless we’re attacked. He doesn’t like it being used in an intervention. This is what they fear. And as he succeeds in making a connection with the American people, they are worried, the neocons are worried that they are being undermined by this.
I’ll tell you why. Rand Paul made a connection with the American people. These other people do not. He made a connection. Therefore, he has the ability to influence and motivate people. I’m telling you what their fears are. They thought that Ron Paul was absolute nutcase, wacko. That’s why they’re calling Rand Paul a wacko, ’cause that’s what they thought of Ron Paul. Libertarian, fruitcake, nutcase, isolationist, shut down the US military, speak positively about Islamists, all this kind of stuff. They are afraid that’s who Rand Paul is, and they’re afraid that what Rand Paul was doing with this filibuster was not just speaking out against the use of drones on American citizens on American soil. They’re afraid that Rand Paul is actually setting the stage for building up public support to stop the interventionist usage of American military might and foreign policy all over the world. It’s a fear that they’ve got.
And there’s more to it than that, too. It’s also the whole notion of jealousy in power politics. Let me put it this way. They, I think, are worried that Rand Paul might be skillful enough to move the Republican mainstream away from the McCain, Kristol, neoconservatism view of the world and toward a position that is not as extreme as his father’s, but is suspicious of interventionism, suspicious of Islamic democracy building, suspicious of financial and military support for dubious regimes.
So there’s all kinds of stuff happening with this filibuster. In addition to the optics, in addition to what was on the surface for everybody to see, the reason McCain is calling Rand Paul and the people that stood up with him wackos is because he thinks that they are extreme kook Libertarians who don’t want the US military going anywhere for anything, any time, anywhere, not even to oppose the Islamists, and so there’s this fear about it, but he made that connection with people. That’s what that whole thing was all about. He’s now a national figure. He wasn’t wild-eyed and screaming and pounding. He was very rational and very reasonable.
He was asking a very simple, easily explained and understood question. It was as simple as the whole House Bank Scandal was. The reason that the House Bank Scandal worked so well, the exposing of it, was because these guys in Congress were able to walk into a bank, in the House of Representatives, and cash a check when they didn’t have any money in their account. You can’t get more simpler than that, and there’s nobody else outside the House of Representatives that can do that. If you write a check for money you don’t have, it bounces, you pay a fee or worse. But these guys were walking into the House bank and writing checks and having the money given or paid with no limit.
Some of these people had hundreds of thousands of dollars in checks they had written for which they didn’t have the money. The House Post Office was another. Honest-to-goodness, a congressman could take a donor’s check to the House Post Office and buy a couple bucks’ worth of stamps and get $9,900 in change. It’s just the way they had it set up. Nobody knew and it finally got exposed. This is one of the many reasons the Republicans won the House in 1994.
It’s one of the many reasons that the then-speaker, Fort Worthless Jim Wright, was gone. The House Bank Scandal was late eighties/early nineties, and it built and built. There were other reasons for the Republican victory in ’94, of course, but this thing was at the beginning of people easily understanding corruption. This was what Rand Paul was doing: “Should a drone be able to kill an American sitting at a cafe, Starbucks, surfing the Internet?” No! It’s very simple. No! But he couldn’t get an answer.
So it was easily understood. It was a very simple question he was posing, and all this was going on while our guys are out dining with Obama, dining with the architect of this current nationwide mess. Rand Paul was standing up opposing this while these guys were out yukking it up with the architect of it all. You know it was a great example of the ruling class and the country class, and the ruling class not liking what this country class senator was doing. It’s no more complicated than that, but a lot of people are ticked off about this, too. I’m glad you called.
RUSH: I think another reason why McCain and the boys are so upset at Rand Paul is… You gotta remember now. Here they are out at dinner at a public restaurant, not in the White House residence. They’re in a public restaurant at dinner with the president, with Obama. Obama takes a 20-vehicle motorcade to get there. So this is something they wanted everybody to notice. It’s on the verge of the sequester and it’s all downhill, and bipartisanship is what all these people — all these Republicans — think everybody wants.
Amazingly, they still think that.
So I want you to imagine the scene. That was their big night! The guys at dinner with Obama, that was their big night. The next day there’d be pictures, news stories, accounts on cable news of Republicans dining with Obama. It’s a big, big bipartisan evening. It’s major progress! They’re gonna finally everything working together, getting things done. Now, imagine you’re sitting at dinner. You’re at that table wherever they were, and you’ve got your iPhone. You’re a Republican senator or whoever else was there.
You’re a Republican. You’ve got your iPad Mini, maybe, or your iPhone, your smartphone, and all of a sudden they start going nuts and you pull out your iPad or you pull out your phone and you look at it, and you see Rand Paul has the nation captivated back in the Senate chamber with a filibuster — while you’re sitting there with Obama and nobody’s noticing. You look this, and you start beating your head against the table, ’cause Rand Paul’s getting everything that you intended to gain from that dinner.
And he’s a freshman.
And he’s a wacko!
“Rand Paul’s his dad. He’s an absolute nutcase Libertarian, and he’s talking about drones? Nobody wants to drop a drone on the American people. What the hell is this?” But he has the nation captivated. It’s caused a real reversal. Not a reversal, but the whole structure of things has now been upset, and it’s got a lot of people concerned, and it has legs. It does have legs. So I think it’s fascinating to behold, and once again it illustrates that these guys going to dinner with Obama, they were not challenging him.
They were not. People think this country is falling apart. People think that this country’s on its last legs as they know it, as it was founded. People in this country are really scared. There is a despondency among the population, a majority of the population. This isn’t just politics-as-usual. As far as the population the country’s concerned, the opposition party still doesn’t get it to the point that they’re not even the opposition party!
Well, Rand Paul appeared to be the opposition, and he had the guts and the courage to stand up and demand that they explain something to him. And not only is he alive to tell about it, he’s not being called names. He’s a hero to people. So they’re sitting there and they can’t figure it out.
RUSH: Brian Williams led the NBC Nightly News last night with the same juxtaposition that I led the show with yesterday.
WILLIAMS: The American people get to decide for themselves about what it is we have just witnessed. It seemed to a lot of people to be an example of our political great divide, but within the same party, the so-called old guard Republicans and the new. The event that gathered the most media coverage by far was a made-for-TV filibuster by Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. It was over the issue of drones and presidential power. And at the same time, across town, actual presidential power was being put to work at a restaurant with another group of Republicans and the president.
RUSH: Now, this was all at the beginning of a report about how, you know, something’s changed in Washington. This wasn’t supposed to happen. They were all geared up, I’m telling you, the Drive-Byers were all geared up to report this dinner with these Republicans and with Obama, and this was gonna signify a new era of bipartisanship and agreement and government growth and, oh, it was gonna be a panacea. Rand Paul went and screwed it up. Now these guys are trying to understand what it all means. Next Brian Williams went and got F. Chuck Todd who is their political director, White House correspondent, whatever, and F. Chuck had a report here on this thing that happened, this change.
TODD: There’s something about Washington that seems different. Suddenly it’s a place where Republicans meet with a Democratic president for dinner. Suddenly it’s a place where a Senator who has an objection channels his inner Mr. Smith from the old Jimmy Stewart movie and actually goes to the floor of the US Senate to filibuster rather than hide behind some sort of congressional mumbo jumbo. Is this a brief respite or is something happening here?
RUSH: And they are terribly worried that there’s something happening there and that they are being left out of it. The power supposedly was at that dinner table. But it wasn’t. It was on the floor of the Senate.
Now, listen to this. Gayle King, CBS morning, speaking with Bob Schieffer. This is Friday. She brings Schieffer in to talk about his Sunday show, Slay the Nation. And Gayle King said to Bob Schieffer, “Hey, Bob, let’s talk about the dinner that President Obama had. Some people –” See, I’m sure they had this set up last week, this segment set up last week to talk to Schieffer no matter what happens.
RUSH: Okay, so Gayle King to Bob Schieffer (paraphrasing), “Let’s talk about that dinner, Bob. President Obama and the other Republicans, some people say that good bonding can come with good conversation and good food. Bob, it was so exciting, good conversation, good food, bonding, Republicans, Democrats. Do you think that the Obama dinner was effective, Bob?”
SCHIEFFER: It was big news yesterday when he invited Chris Van Hollen of his own party to come to the White House and have lunch. So I think it’s all good. You know, I’m suddenly creating a reputation for myself as a hopeless romantic here, but I kind of feel like these are good things when you judge where you are. You know the old saying, in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. So here we are actually seeing people, quote, talk to one another.
RUSH: Man, it’s romantic, oh, my God, it hearkens back to the old days when the Republicans knew their place. Does he think he’s Dan Rather? In the land of the blind, a one-eyed man is king? Whose one-eyed in there? Who only had one eye at that dinner? Who’s the cyclops?