RUSH: I don’t know, folks. Some days I think I’m losing touch, and some days when I think I’m losing touch I worry about it because I’ve always been in touch. Then other times I don’t worry when I think I’m losing touch because I think it’s the way to go.
This NSA business, does anybody really think that program’s been put on the shelf even for a couple of — come on, folks. You know the program’s gonna be back, and Rand Paul’s out there fundraising off of it and McCain and the rest of the Republicans and others in the Senate are all ticked off at him, but it was predictable. Every bit of this is predictable.
I would just tell you this. If there’s some call that you’ve been wanting to make for the last ten years that you haven’t been able to make because you’ve been afraid the NSA would overhear you, make that call. If you are doing anything that you don’t want anybody to know about, and you’ve been afraid to talk about it, this is your day, go ahead and make the call, talk about it, because the NSA’s not listening, are they?
Intelligence agencies are not sweeping up that metadata. You’re free for the next whatever number of days till they get this figured out to do every secret clandestine thing that you want nobody to know about, you got days to do it.
Greetings, my friends, and welcome.
Seriously, everybody’s so exercised. And by the way, Rand Paul did step over it here when he accused some people of wanting the United States to be attacked in order to prove a point, and he walked that back.
RUSH: Here’s Ken in Miami. I’m glad you waited, sir. Great to have you on the program.
CALLER: Hi, Rush.
CALLER: (unintelligble) — the father, the son and the Holy Ghost.
RUSH: (laughing) Not quite.
CALLER: And they even had IDrive on Dr. Who.
RUSH: They did? I’m sorry, I’m having to read what you’re saying ’cause I’m having trouble understanding. That’s why the delay. I don’t watch Dr. Who. I tried and I couldn’t get into it. The phone booth, I didn’t get it.
CALLER: The reason I called was that Republicans were elected to stop Obama. Obama publicly endorsed the USA Freedom Act, so shouldn’t that be enough for the Republicans to be against it?
RUSH: Yeah. I feel your pain. The Republicans even acknowledged that they were elected to stop Obama, but then when they have the chance, they don’t. Like in the trade deal. This transpacific partnership that still remains a big mystery. It’s the Republicans that are gonna pull Obama — it’s caused me to be on the same page as Elizabeth Warren on this. Imagine how bad this thing must be. Actually, Elizabeth Warren’s on the same page with me on this thing.
This is bad news. It’s bad news ’cause we don’t know what’s in it. It may be okay, but they’re really making that look doubtful ’cause they won’t let anybody read it, takes notes about it. I mean, the people voting on it had to go to some secret room in the basement of the Capitol to read the damn thing, and they were not allowed to tell anybody about it. Why support that, just on the basis of that alone?
But this Patriot Act business and the Freedom Act and what have you, the renewal of the Patriot Act, the sweeping, the Hoovering, if you will, of phone metadata. You know, I haven’t talked about that today ’cause I led off with it, and I think it’s all academic. I mean, it’s gonna be reinstituted at some point, if it even really has been canceled. I, for one, remain dubious that the NSA actually stopped collecting the data. It’s a little bit more than just flipping a switch. This is a massive undertaking, to be able to vacuum up all of the data.
So my guess is they’re still collecting it but somehow not accessing it. They’re doing something or not doing something with it to be in compliance. But I didn’t believe they’ve stopped sweeping the data up. You’ve got Rand Paul out there now starting to allege conspiracy theories left and right to the point that other Republicans are accusing him of fundraising and electioneering with insincerity. In fact, let me find the sound bites. Grab number 13. This is last night, Washington, the Senate floor, debating extending the surveillance of telephone and other electronic data, the NSA. Rand Paul speaking.
PAUL: This is a debate over the Bill of Rights. This is a debate over the Fourth Amendment. This is a debate over your right to be left alone. We are not collecting the information of terrorists; we are collecting all American citizens’ records all of the time. This is what we fought the Revolution over. Are we going to so blithely give up our freedom? Are we going to so blithely go along and just say “take it”? Well, I’m not gonna take it anymore. I don’t think the American people are gonna take it anymore.
RUSH: You know, he went on to say that in his belief there are some Republicans rooting for an attack now so that they can blame it on him, meaning he thinks that since we’ve stopped sweeping the data, stopped Hoovering it up, that means that in the next couple of days that terrorists will be able to make some phone calls and plan an attack and we won’t know it ’cause we’ve stopped listening, which is not what this program is. This is not a listening program. It’s simply collection of metadata. Anyway, he may have jumped the shark with that because he started to walk that back. Here’s what he said about it late last night.
PAUL: People here in town think I’m making a huge mistake. Some of them I think secretly want there to be an attack on the United States so they can blame it on me.
RUSH: That didn’t sit well. You can imagine some of the Republicans thought that was a little bit over the top, other presidential candidates. So Rand Paul went back on the Fox News Channel America’s Newsroom today with Bill Hemmer, who said, “Look, ‘some of them I think secretly want there to be an attack on the US.’ Who are you talking about here, Senator Paul, what are you really referring to there?”
PAUL: I think sometimes in the heat of battle hyperbole can get the better of anyone and that may be the problem there. Going after people’s motives and impugning people’s motives is a mistake. And in the heat of battle I think sometimes hyperbole can get the better of all of us.
HEMMER: Are you standing by that or not? I’m just trying to nail that down. Do you retract that?
PAUL: I think by calling it hyperbole, that means maybe I exaggerated the case.
RUSH: So do you pull it back or not? (interruption) He pulled it back? All right, well, Senator McCain not happy. (interruption) Yeah, I know. (interruption) This is the kind of stuff the maverick got the nickname for, doing this kind of stuff, the maverick. Not sitting well with the maverick, John McCain, last night, back to the Senate floor, Rand Paul and McCain had this little tete-a-tete.
PAUL: I was here for 30 minutes of the Republican side speaking. I sat in my seat for 30 minutes so there was not 23 minutes of equally divided time.
MCCAIN: President, obviously people don’t know the rules of the Senate. Maybe they should learn —
PAUL: Mr. President, I request the remaining five minutes of time on the opposite side.
PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Is there objection to the request of the Senator from Kentucky?
MCCAIN: I object.
RUSH: (imitating McCain) “I object. I’m sick and tired of listening to this guy, what he’s talking about. Sit down. What do you mean, opposite side? It’s what I do, not you.”