RUSH: Rodney in Denver. You’re next. Great to have you for Open Line Friday here on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hello. This is a tremendous honor. I’m a young black male out here in Denver, and me and my brother, we used to watch you back on television, and we didn’t really know anything about politics. We just liked what you said about Clinton, and it was just really entertaining for us.
RUSH: Well, thank you. Thank you very much. I appreciate that.
CALLER: No problem. This is really an honor. Also, just a little bit of background. My dad was a juvenile-delinquent counselor for 20 years, so speaking proper English and working hard was something really stressed in our household. So I guess you can call it “father privilege.”
Anyway, I just really think that the Republican Party… Since the Democrats feel they have most black voters in their back pocket, I feel that Republicans should have almost kind of an open invitation to join the Republican Party. The reason I say this is because people who are just underprivileged or poor, they’re not gonna go anywhere with a Democratic mentality.
I feel that a lot of youth in this country, black youth, not only don’t know the American dream is or don’t believe in it, they don’t even know what it is. A lot of poor black people, what they hear from Republicans is that they’re gonna take away their welfare. They’re gonna take away this and that. When the message really should be:
“These are the benefits of rolling up your sleeves, these are the benefits of working hard — and if you follow these conservative principles, one year from now you’re gonna have a much better life than what you have sitting around waiting for the government to come rescue you.” I just think it’s something that needs to be emphasized, because with —
RUSH: Rodney, I agree with you one hundred percent. The one thing the Republican Party’s not doing is articulating the kind of philosophy or belief system that you just described. Conservatism, call it what you will, the Republican Party’s not talking to anybody that way, much less minorities. Nobody’s out there talking about the principles of hard work, the American dream, rolling up your sleeves, self-reliance, rugged individualism. But you said something I want to go back to. You said that young blacks hear Republicans say they want to take away their welfare and whatever. Did you mean to say it that way? Is that actually how Republicans are heard speaking, or is that what young blacks are told Republicans want to do?
CALLER: In my opinion, absolutely yes. It’s like I know people that are black that don’t, you know, think anything Republican, and right away — for instance, a long time ago, my father is fairly conservative, my mother is more liberal. And I asked her when I was a young child, “What’s the difference between the Democrat and Republican Party?” She told me, “Oh, well, the Democrat Party is for the poor, and the Republican Party is for the rich.”
CALLER: I believed that for 20, 25 some odd years.
RUSH: A lot of people still do.
CALLER: Exactly. And it’s interesting because when Barack Obama had a chance to obviously win the presidency, I was excited like a lot of minorities out here, and I voted for Barack Obama in his first term. And then I, you know, remember —
RUSH: Wait, wait, wait, wait.
CALLER: Yes. (laughing) I know.
RUSH: No, no. I’m interested. You’ve been a conservative, I’m assuming since your dad was raising you all those years ago, but even though you were a true believer, staunch conservative, you still voted Obama, so it was a racial loyalty thing?
CALLER: Yes. And it was also kind of a little bit of ignorance. I kind of didn’t really know any better. And I remembered hearing some of the rhetoric that was going on in the news about, you know, what you would say or Beck would say, and I’d say, “Well, let me tune in. I remember watching Rush when I was younger, let me tune in.” And I started listening to you again on the radio, and I said, “You know what? I’m gonna start looking up the history of the Democratic Party.” And you know as well as I do, wow, it was kind of like coming out of The Matrix or something. It was, oh, my goodness, I had no idea that the Democratic Party has a history of racism and keeping people oppressed.
CALLER: And I was like, oh, my goodness. I actually ended up changing my affiliation. I’m a registered Republican. And, Rush, it is hard to be a black Republican anywhere.
RUSH: I know.
CALLER: It’s hard to be a Republican, period.
RUSH: Rodney, tell me about it. Hang on a minute. I have to take a break here, but I don’t want you to go yet. I got just a couple more things I want to ask you, if you can wait. Can you?
CALLER: Oh, yeah, no problem.
RUSH: Cool. We’ll be right back. Don’t go away.
RUSH: Okay, Rodney, in Denver, very quickly, do you think the Republicans have an open with the African-American community, given what is happening with immigration now?
CALLER: There’s a huge opportunity here because I know there’s a lot of, it’s been said before, that a lot of poor black people don’t feel that a Barack Obama has done enough for the black community.
RUSH: That’s right. And now Obama’s bending over backwards to help a different group.
RUSH: And so that might be an opportunity for the Republicans to make a pitch. It’s a branding thing they’re gonna have to overcome. I think it can be done. Look, it happened with you. It happened with you. It happened with my TV show and my radio show. I can do it. I know it can be done. And I know what it takes. This is what’s so frustrating. You know how to reach people. I do. They do, too. They’re just somehow, for some reason, unwilling to do it. It’s called conservatism, and it does, it works every time it’s presented in the right way. Rodney, I’m really glad you called. I appreciate it.