RUSH: Here’s John in Winter Haven, Florida, as we head back to the phones. Hello, sir.
CALLER: Rush, what an honor. I go back with you from the day I found you on the dial 30 years ago or so. But I feel like I’ve gotten a PhD in not only conservative politics, but what I call Founding Father values.
RUSH: Right, you have. We don’t award any degree. Degrees are not given, but you have the equivalent of one. If you’ve been there that long there is no question you have a tremendously high education here as a result of steady listening to this program. You do.
CALLER: I appreciate what you’ve done all these years and are continuing to do. It’s a huge sacrifice from a time perspective, but you do it with one hand, you know, tied behind your back or your brain.
RUSH: Half my brain tied behind my back, yeah. But I don’t sacrifice anything. Believe me. There’s no sacrifice.
CALLER: You do it so well. Snerdley advised me to get to my point, and I will. I often hear you opine about the fact — and I totally agree — that our GOP establishment just sits mute as issue after issue is handed them on a silver platter. You never hear them take it up and run with it or articulate a point. I just have a theory, much like the Limbaugh theory. This is sort of a baby, tiny, not even to be compared to the Limbaugh theory. But do you suppose that they sit back knowing full well that you are going to articulate the point they should be making to your audience? I mean, we see the midterm elections go our way, and it obviously is not because they are making the point as elected people. I just long… I’m observer of politics like you are —
RUSH: I think that used to be the case. I think it used to be that Republican/conservatives leaders would rely on me and others in the so-called conservative media to take the arrows for them. We would be the ones to explaining. We would be the ones to inspire. We would be the ones to fire up. We would be the ones to basically take the hit when there was reaction to it. In other words, they relied on us to inform their voters who they were. They relied on us to tell their voters what they were gonna do.
But I don’t think anymore that’s the case because they don’t do what their voters believe they’re gonna do, and clearly I no longer espouse what they believe. So I don’t think that is a factor. It was I think not long ago. The last three years, last four years there’s been a transformation that’s taken place among the Republican leadership. It’s kind of complicated here, really, because the Republican Party has never really been enamored of conservatives. The Republican Party has been tolerant.
But for the most part, the Republican Party did not like Reagan. I mean, the establishment wing of it did not like Reagan and don’t like conservatives. One of the reasons why — and there are many reasons I’m sure I haven’t even thought of. But one of the basic reasons is that the mainstream Republican Party does not oppose a big government. They want to run it. The mainstream of the Republican Party… My brother wrote a column about this phenomenon just this week. A lot of conservatives make the mistake of thinking it’s just the Republican leadership.
But there are a lot of Republicans, voting Republicans who are perfectly fine with Obamacare. There are a lot of Republicans, mainstream Republicans who say, “Look, let’s not do too much here on immigration.” There are a lot of mainstream Republican voters who embody the same fear that Republican leaders do. “Oh, we can’t make the Hispanics mad at us!” I’ll give you an example. There are a lot of mainstream Republican voters who are embarrassed by Sarah Palin. Now, Snerdley’s looking at me with a frown and a look of disbelief on his face.
But I think it’s something that we have face.
It’s not just the Republican establishment that is unwilling to fight Obama. There are plenty of mainstream Republicans who are unwilling to as well. My point here is that not every Republican voter is a conservative. That’s my point. There are a lot of moderate Republicans out there. You know it as well as I do. You can sit there and frown all you want, but you know it as well as I do. (interruption) Lost influence? Those voters had lost influence? (interruption) I don’t know that they’ve lost influence.
Who do we keep nominating in our presidential primaries? (interruption) But here, back to the original point. It’s no just the Republican establishment, but there are a lot of mainstream Republicans to whom the idea of reducing the size of government isn’t a big deal. They’re not oriented the way we conservatives are about this. It’s okay if we do, but they’re not gonna go to war over it. Now, the Republican establishment — the elected Republican establishment, actually, and some of the so-called conservative media establishment is actually okay with a big government.
You can identify those people very easily if you read what they write. They will say things like, “We believe in a strong executive and a big government managed smartly. We believe in smart management, smart government, and we’ll reduce parts of the government that are wasteful and extraneous and unnecessary.” But as an overall operating principle, the idea that government must be reduced? That’s not a Republican Party view.
They want to run the Big Government.
They want to be Senate committee chairmen.
Do you realize…? Look at it this way, just the way they do. If you are a Republican senator, you control, you have access to (in a way of thinking) 1/100th of United States budget. You don’t have to be on the Finance Committee. You don’t have to be in the banking committee. You vote on all the legislation. There’s a hundred people in this club. So that means the full force, size, power, and wealth of the US government is held in the hands of hundred people — and most of them have no desire for that big pie to get smaller.
They want to run, they want to be in charge of who gets that money, because that’s where the power resides. They want to be in charge of being able to write legislation that offers tax break over here, tax break over here, tax increase here, you name it. But that’s where the power is. That’s why I’ve always believed that real tax reform isn’t gonna happen with people that are gonna be running for reelection, because the purpose of the tax code is not to raise money. It’s social architecture. The purpose of the tax code is how members of Congress wield power.
They’re not going to willingly vote it away.
Now, if you have a Civics 101 belief — if you believe that most Republicans believe in small government and believe in less obtrusive government and believe in individual liberty and freedom — then you would think they would all be hell-bent on reducing the size of government, expanding the public and private sector, expanding the free market and free enterprise economy, expanding entrepreneurism and opportunity.
But you would be wrong. That is not a guiding principle of the Republican Party. It’s out there to be seen. Some people don’t want to admit that because then you get close to, “Well, there’s no difference in the two parties,” when there clearly is. But that’s a big dividing line, to have them agree on things. That’s a big issue to have the Republicans and Democrats agree on things. What just happened here? What just happened? Let me spell it out for you.
We just had the second midterm landslide, however you want to call it: Victory for the Republicans/defeat for the Democrats. Either way. Both are true. The Democrat Party in 2010 lost 700 combined seats all over the country, and had massive similar size losses last November. The American people finally sent the Democrats packing in the Senate and next month the Republicans are gonna run that. The Republicans are gonna run the House, they’re gonna run the Senate. Half the Democrat senators left who voted for Obamacare.
Half of them who did are gone. The American people clearly have gone to the polls twice in midterm elections and said, “Stop this!” What just happened today, or yesterday? The House Republicans just fully funded Obama’s amnesty — well, Homeland Security — up through February 27th, and fully funded Obamacare. They had a clear opportunity to say, “Nope, we’re not gonna let Democrats write next year’s budget,” or the remainder of this year’s. This budget year stuff gets confusing because when I say “next year,” I mean, next calendar year.
Well, we didn’t beyond December 11th, tomorrow. So the question was, “Okay, do we come up with a budget,” an omnibus it’s called, “that will define United States spending through all of next year through September 30th, or do we do one for just a month or two — and then when we are sworn in and run both houses of Congress, then we do the budget for the remainder of the year with our values in it and our economic beliefs in it?”
Well, they didn’t do that. They essentially threw away all of next year and let Harry Reid have pretty much what he wanted. The Democrats got pretty much what they wanted in this budget. In fact, Harry Reid got a lot of pork for constituents of his in November. And Obamacare? Fully funded. No new money was added, but there wasn’t any effort to defund elements of it or repeal any of it. Not to say they won’t try it next year, but they didn’t do it this time.
Because out there is this mythical monster called the government shutdown that was gonna eat up all these Republicans if they didn’t give the Democrats, after the Democrats have lost two landslide elections, is that Republican Party thought if they didn’t let the Democrats run this show, the Republicans were gonna be hated. Because they had a poll. They had a poll that said, “If there’s a government shutdown, Republicans are gonna get blamed for it!”
They had one last year, too, that said the same thing. Republicans won the Senate this year and added seats in the House despite being “responsible” for the shutdown last year. So where is the evidence that the Republicans in any way are willing to fight for a belief in smaller government? Don’t see it yet. Don’t see it yet. And, by the way, they haven’t lost the support of the Chamber of Commerce. They haven’t lost the support of major Wall Street Republican donors.
This is right along what they wanted: Crony corporatism, or crony socialism. Both parties will play ball in that, and their donors love it both ways, Republicans and Democrats.
RUSH: Right on. Right on. We’re back. Here’s John Boehner, by the way, Speaker of the House, this morning at a Q&A at a press conference basically defending the budget bill. I want you to listen to him and what he says is the big achievement here, what they’re all celebrating over.
BOEHNER: All these provisions in this bill have been worked out in a bipartisan, bicameral fashion, or they wouldn’t be in the bill. It took this long to put this bill together. When you look at the number of agreements that had to be struck on funding levels, on riders and other provisions, there’s a lot in this bill. And the appropriators did a, frankly, a marvelous job.
RUSH: So you see the bragging rights here (imitating Boehner), “Well, hey, all the provisions here have been worked out in a bipartisan fashion or they wouldn’t be in the bill. Yeah, we worked with the Democrats.” Unspoken is, that’s what the American people want us to do. That’s what these establishment Republicans run around and publicly say that they believe the election results mean, that people are tired of gridlock, they want us working together.
So the Republicans think they’ve really scored some points here. Oh, yeah, they’re bragging about it. “Look, we got a budget for all of next year, and we worked with the Democrats on it. Look, it can happen!” Except that’s not what the election was about. The Republicans were elected by people who want this stuff to stop, and they simply don’t hear that. So you can see, there’s no fealty there to smaller government or any kind of principle or what have you. Nope. Bipartisanship. That’s what they seek credit for.