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RUSH: Okay, now, look: This dust-up stuff that happened and continues to happen since the Fox News debate — I’m sorry, the presidential debate — on Fox News on Thursday night. A piece of advice that nobody’s asked for, for Mr. Trump: Mr. Trump, get back to the issues. That’s why you’re where you are. Get back to the issues. Get back to immigration. Tell us what you think about whatever the issues are. That’s what put you on the map. Even despite the polling data, I would give that advice.

This is really all you need to know at this stage, although there’s much more to this than just this current poll. But for the moment, there is this NBC poll that they do. It’s an online poll that they claim is scientific with a margin of error (as any other poll) that is out there. Trump went up in this poll. Trump went up one point from 22 to 23%. NBC does this poll, by the way, with SurveyMonkey.

SurveyMonkey is an online polling company that is more than… Anybody can do an online poll. You put your website up, put yes/no, whatever, and anybody can vote countless thousands of times. It’s skewed and it doesn’t tell you anything. SurveyMonkey is an actual polling unit that has attempted innovatively to establish an online poll that ends up being scientific.

They have a particular sample in the way they do it, and they have combined with NBC. This survey was taken through the Fox News debate, and the bottom line is that Trump’s comments about Megyn Kelly have not yet hurt his standing in the Republican Party, and, if it has, it isn’t showing in the numbers. Trump is at the top at 23%. But the real big news is who else went up. In second place is Ted Cruz, up 7%. In third place is Ben Carson, up 3%. He’s at 11. Carly Fiorina, 8%. That’s up from 2%.

Marco Rubio, 8%, unchanged. Scott Walker lost three points since the debate. He’s at 7%. Jeb Bush lost three points. He was at 10%. He’s at 7%. So despite all of this that has happened and all that’s been reported and all the associated controversies, according to polling data — just like it was after the McCain incident and just as it was after Trump said what he said about illegal Mexican immigrants and so forth…

Every time one of these things happens… I mean, how many times did you hear over the weekend that this was it? “Trump has finally stepped in it!” Republican leaders, establishment leaders said this was it, and it isn’t yet. His numbers went up. Now, they went up one point, 22 to 23%. But it still went up. As for Jeb, at least as far as this polling data is concerned, it was an absolute terrible night. So Trump is still in the lead after all of this.

Now, this overnight poll was conducted for 24 hours from Friday evening into Saturday, and during that period, Trump stayed in the headlines due to his comments about Megyn Kelly and the fact that he was disinvited from the RedState gathering in Atlanta. You know, when these things happen there was an initial reaction from every quarter with people opining as to what the result will be, what it all means, what’s gonna happen.

The only evidence we have now is this poll, and they will continue to come. The polling data will continue to roll out, and we’ll see at what point whether any of this starts… If any of this… What I’m searching for is, everybody’s looking for things to happen here as expected. Traditionally, “The candidate goes out, says something controversial; it hurts him. The candidate goes out, says something controversial, and is supposed to apologize.

“He doesn’t apologize? It doesn’t hurt him.” None of that’s in play here. We are in uncharted territory. A lot of people have not seen anything like this before, particularly in recent years. And there’s an observation that I made to a friend of mine sometime over the weekend. I forget which day, but I was reading all of this stuff all day Saturday and all day Sunday. I was reading the Drive-By coverage of the controversy surrounding Trump’s remark about blood here, blood there, blood everywhere, and so forth.

I was amazed, ladies and gentlemen, that I couldn’t find — and it may have existed. It may have happened. In the Washington Post, the New York Times, I couldn’t find a story that actually condemned Trump for this. There were all kinds of story reporting it, but there wasn’t any condemnation like there usually is for any Republican who would say anything like this. There is derision. There is mockery. There is; isn’t that correct? There was purely objective reporting. There was not one snarky comment.

I don’t know what it means. It’s just an observation that I made, and they reported these things verbatim that Trump said and there was no outrage. In the next sentence, in the next paragraph, there was no outrage from the reporter. There was no shock. There was no expression of disbelief. It was just objective reported, “This is what Trump said.” I mean, there wasn’t any, “And this continues the Republican War on Women!” There was none of that. It was actually objectively reported.

I don’t want to insert myself in this, but I guarantee you: Anybody else but Trump says something like this, and they happen to be a Republican, and they are going to be lambasted and ripped to shreds forever for it. So there’s all kinds of different dynamics at work here, and I have adopted the position of just stepping back and absorbing it all before entering into any kind of analysis, because this is uncharted territory.

Now, my instincts have been right up to a point. I thought that Trump wouldn’t be hurt by what he said about McCain, when everybody in the Drive-By Media did — and I did not think that Trump would be hurt by what he said about Mexican illegal immigrants and whatever other illegal immigrants he was talking about — for a host of reasons. I think there are a lot of people in the Republican establishment who to this day do not know who their base voters are.

They do not know what’s on the minds of their base voters. They continue to apply and attach conventional wisdom that doesn’t apply here, and as such they continue to be shocked and dismayed and perplexed by all of it to the point that there aren’t any experts. I mean, you can turn to every television network or any television network you want and listen to the “expert” commentary. There isn’t any expertise on this because nobody’s seen this before.

No, not that we haven’t had scandal. But we’ve not seen candidate increase his position in polls after such public comment and behavior. We’ve never seen it, never seen it. And I guarantee you the Wizards of Smart — you know, the political ruling class — are beating their heads against the wall trying to figure this out. Their latest explanation is, “Well, you know what? The reason why you guys on the left don’t hit him is Trump’s not really a Republican.

He’s just his own brand. He’s just Trump. “People are not associating Trump with the Republican Party. He’s not really a Republican; he’s just Trump. And, as such, he has his fans — and no matter what he does, his fans are gonna stay with him.” This is the latest attempt by some is in the establishment to mollify themselves.


RUSH: The best way to get all of this stuff in play out there is to do it in some semblance of order. We’ll start with the audio sound bites. Friday, NPR, All Things Considered. White House correspondent Scott Horsley reporting about the impact of the five p.m. pregame meal debate, and you’ll hear why this is interesting.

HORSLEY: The audience for that early forum was only about a quarter of the size of the prime time debates, but [Claremont McKenna College’s Professor of Politics Jack] Pitney says the resulting buzz accustomed give a boost to Fiorina’s struggling campaign.

PITNEY: This morning Rush Limbaugh was praising her, and that’s very important because people listen to Rush Limbaugh, and some of them are in a position to write checks to candidates, and I suspect Carly Fiorina’s fundraising is gonna pick up as a result.

RUSH: That was Friday. That was before this NBC poll was released yesterday showing that Fiorina and Ted Cruz and Ben Carson are up big in this NBC Monkey time poll, whatever it is. The Monkey whatever it is poll. SurveyMonkey. Again, Trump at 23%, up 1%; Cruz, 31%, up 7; Ben Carson 11%, up 3. Fiorina was up six points to 8%. Now we move on to Friday night. CNN today, Don Lemon was interviewing Donald Trump. He said, “Let’s talk about Megyn Kelly, because you brought her up. She did push you. She pushed a lot of people. But what is it with you and Megyn Kelly?”

TRUMP: I have no respect for her. I don’t think she’s very good I think she’s highly overrated. She gets out and she starts asking me all sorts of ridiculous questions, and, you know, you could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever. But, uh, she was, uh… In my opinion, she was off base.

RUSH: Okay. Now, when that… I’m just gonna be honest: When I first heard that comment, I was clueless. I had no idea. “What in the world is he talking about?” Blood coming out of her eyes? You know, I’m the mayor of Realville. I didn’t see any blood coming out of her eyes. And then “blood coming out of wherever”? Honestly, I did not associate it with anything. I drew a total blank. I don’t know what blood in your eyes even means.

But the blood… (interruption) No, I’m just… Look, I know I’m making myself out to be Mr. Naive. But I had no idea. I had literally no clue what that was. I didn’t figure it out ’til I saw other people say what they thought it meant, and then I said, “Oh! No wonder everybody’s upset about this.” But I didn’t. I’m just shooting you straight. I don’t mind admitting that whatever this is, naivete or whatever, but I just did not think it.

You know, it’s not something I think about all the time. It’s so seldom on my mind that it’s not anywhere near the forefront of my mind. And then, lo and behold, I’m doing show prep over the weekend, and guess what I find? People magazine. There’s a new trend. It’s called “free bleeding,” where a woman does not use feminine products when she’s menstruating. It’s apparently a new thing, and People magazine thinks it’s absolutely fabulous.

It’s a story about a woman named Kiran Gandhi. She’s played drums for the singer M.I.A. and so she decided to run in a London marathon without a tampon while she was on her period. People magazine is as excited as they can be. I mean… Here’s her quote. Let me just quote her. “I ran with blood dripping down my legs for sisters who donÂ’t have access to tampons and sisters who, despite cramping and pain, hide it away and pretend like it doesn’t exist.” So we had sensitivity awareness and consciousness raising for women who can’t afford tampons.

We were overwhelmed with this stuff over the weekend.

Here’s a time break coming up, continue we get back here, folks. I’m not making this up.


RUSH: Somebody tell me: Why is it necessary to raise awareness about menstruation if it’s the first thing everybody thinks when they hear Donald Trump say blood coming out of “whereever”? Look, I don’t make the news, folks. Don’t get irritated with me here. I’m just telling you: People magazine’s got this story about this woman that ran the London marathon without a tampon bleeding freely for four hours in this race, and they’re praising it. She “raised awareness for her sisters” who can’t afford tampons?

What’s the next thing that’s gonna happen. We’re gonna import this woman and make a TV commercial with her speaking out in favor of Obamacare so that Obamacare will now cover tampons for everybody? And how many a month are they gonna be able to have to provide and so we’re gonna go through this whole routine again? And that’s just part of what this woman had to say. This woman, she’s just nutcase from through and through. And she is a Harvard Business School graduate.

She did this to empower women. Her wearing a tampon is an example of male oppression because men invented them and men designed them and to heck with it. I it violates nature, and it certainly is… It’s a way that women are kept in line and kept secondary. It’s just absurd, silly stuff. And it’s being championed here by People magazine. There’s even a term for this: “free flowing.” I doubt it’s gonna… “Free bleeding.” I’m sorry. Free bleeding.

The timing was just amazing here, given Trump’s comments, but I just go back to those… It took off me awhile to figure out what everybody else or a lot of other people thought that Trump meant by that. You know, as I say, I’m a genuine literalist — maybe to a fault — and it just didn’t make any sense. I had no idea, blood coming from the… I’ve never heard the phrase, so I didn’t know what it meant.

I mean, I had to imagine that it meant she was angry, sort of like saying “breathing fire.” But I just never heard the phrase before, then the other stuff. So then back to Trump, Don Lemon. “I mean, a lot of people are wondering about this language when it comes to women. Do you worry that that kind of talk might drive some women voters away?”

TRUMP: I’m also not a fan… You know, the great Mike Wallace was a friend of mine. In fact, he did me on 60 Minutes. He was phenomenal, was a phenomenal on 60 Minutes, but he was a friend of mine. He was a tough cookie, and he was great, and the son is only a tiny fraction of Mike. Believe me, there’s a big difference between Mike Wallace and Chris Wallace ’cause I watched him last night, you know, blood pouring out of his eyes, too. I said to myself, “What am I doing? I’m here in front of all these people, I’m doing Fox a favor by doing this show, and what am I doing?”

RUSH: (laughing) Sorry. Just is laugh. It’s a routine. It’s a routine. It’s down… Nobody’s ever seen anything like it out of somebody running for political office. He’s violating every rule there is out there — and it, up to now, is working, depending on what working actually is defined as “working.” Then Sunday morning on CNN State of the Union, Jake Tapper interviewing Trump, says, “You said ‘blood coming out of her wherever’!”

TRUMP: No, I said blood was going for wherever, because I wanted to finish the sentence because I went on to some… I wanted to get off of the whole thing and get back on to subject of jobs or whatever we were talking to about right after that. So I didn’t even say anything ’cause I didn’t even finish the thought. I was going to say “nose” and or “ears,” because that’s a very common statement, “blood pouring out of somebody’s nose.” It’s a statement showing anger.

RUSH: And he then continued with this, as further explanation.

TRUMP: Only a deviant would say that what I said was what they were referring to. ‘Cause nobody can make that statement. You almost have to be sick to put that together, I think.

TAPPER: Well, among that list of deviants would be Erick Erickson.

TRUMP: Well, take a look his past. First of all, he’s a loser.

TAPPER: Jeb Bush, Lindsey Graham, Carly Fiorina.

TRUMP: Jake? Jake? Carly Fiorina? Okay. I mean, give me a break.

RUSH: I’m sorry for laughing. (laughing) But, anyway, there’s so much at play here, so much to weed through. But the story here is this poll from NBC News and SurveyMonkey that shows no harm, that shows no damage, and now the whole subject matter is gone off in a bunch of different tangents with people wondering, “Well, what was Fox doing here? Did Fox have a plan to take Trump out? Was there or was there not? Who was involved in that?”

Then the whole RedState thing with Trump being disinvited, people weighing in on this. It has veered away from things that campaigns are usually about (i.e., issues and substance) and has become totally devoted and about various personalities, which, in the American pop culture is a winning formula these days. I have to tell you, folks, it’s uncharted territory for me, anyway. I can’t come here with a firm, “This is what I think about this or that,” ’cause I really have to sit here and just observe more of it as it plays out.

I have reactions to things. For example, I’ve got a bunch of e-mails from people over the weekend saying, “You better deal with Erickson! If you don’t deal with Erickson, then you’re not up to snuff.” “What do you mean, ‘Deal with Erickson?'” I wrote. “You better! You know, you can’t let this go.” Let me tell you something, folks. I have had a policy for I don’t know how long: Right or wrong, good or bad, I do not purposely try to destroy people on my team.

Now, if they do that themselves, fine. Nothing I can do about it. But I do not do that. I do not enter any kind of competition with anybody else on my team supposedly engaged in the big prize, and that is reversing the direction and trajectory of this country. I try not to get sidetracked by offering opinions on what this commentator said and this commentator said and whether there’s now disqualified. I’ve heard all the criticisms, and a lot of people have had many.

But it’s not what I’ve done in the past, and I don’t feel comfortable, I never have felt comfortable doing it. I don’t think that it’s my role. People have their lives, they do what they do, they say what they say, and they survive it or not. But I have never viewed myself as someone who’s… In fact, I’ve always been irritated when it happens by others. I remember Ollie North said something that was impolitic one way, way back about Iran-Contra.

A whole bunch of people in the conservative movement said, “Ollie, how could you! You’re embarrassing us,” and they want to disregard Oliver North and disqualify him for being part for. Just and I thought, “We eat our own, we throw our own overboard. I don’t see the Democrats ever doing this. I don’t see the Democrats or the liberals acting judgmental on their own, throwing people all over.”

In fact, we’re just now beginning to get a taste of it watching what’s happening to Bernie Sanders with his #BlackLivesMatter stuff. It’s rare when it happens on the Democrat side. Bernie Sanders was bullied off the stage again. It was either in Seattle or Portland. Now, meanwhile, Bernie Sanders is attracting crowds that Hillary Clinton can only dream of. There is a real fissure in the Democrat Party and the Drive-Bys are not interested in it because of this Trump, Fox News, RedState thing.

But the Democrat Party is in huge big trouble. Their presumed coronation front-runner is in big trouble in more ways than one. She’s in trouble. And not just because she’s a dryball, and not just because she has no charisma, and she’s really not that bright, when you get right down to it, and she really is not infectious. I mean, when Hillary Clinton shows up, there’s nothing that wants to make you get on her team. Here’s Bernie Sanders, a little 80-year-old guy or whatever he is, running around.

He’s become the darling of leftist progressive extremists in this country except for one group, the #BlackLivesMatter group. Wherever he goes, they try to show up and they bully him off the stage, and you see this little 80-year-old guy, and he gets bullied off the stage. Meanwhile, this guy is drawing crowds of 25, 30, 1000 thousand people. And Hillary Clinton cannot draw flies. Now, I think there’s huge problems on the Democrat side. Obviously the media doesn’t want to focus on them.

Because they’re having too much fun with this Trump business and Fox News and so forth. But eventually, folks, all this is gonna blow over. Eventually it’s all gonna be yesterday’s news. Life goes on. And there’s gonna be something else. I don’t know what. Something’s gonna happen. It could be later this afternoon, could be tomorrow, could be next, but something is gonna happen, and it will become the new focus, and there will be new players on the stage and new focuses of attention and new outraged cries of, “We can’t let them get away with saying that!”

And the cycle just repeats.

But as I said at the opening the program: My advice is worth exactly what anybody’s paying for it, which is zero. I’m just objectively looking at this. Trump is popular for a host of reasons. One of the reasons Trump is popular is because of the positions he has articulated on issues that a significant number of Americans consider to be very important, and he has said things on those issues that this significant number of Americans happen to agree with.

I think it would be in his best interests to get back to ’em. It’s just my harmless, futile little opinion here. I’m not presuming to tell Mr. Trump what to do, but I just think you dance with the ones who brung you. You never forget why you are someplace, and he’s there because of issues. It’s time to hear more from Mr. Trump on other issues that also are considered to be very important, and if he does that, then he’ll take the rest of the campaign with him.

He can see to it that this stuff is left in the dust if he wants to. But I know he enjoys this, he has fun with it. As far as he’s concerned, he’d look at the polls and say I don’t know what I’m talking about. He’s doing everything right and winning. I don’t know what I’m talking about but he does. Look at his poll numbers. I totally understand that, but I’m thinking long-term here for him.


RUSH: Grab sound bite number six. Here’s a couple of more, six and seven. This is continuing CNN State of the Union, Jake Tapper. After Trump says that his “blood” remark was about showing anger, he added this…

TRUMP: Only a deviant would say that what I said was what they were referring to. ‘Cause nobody can make that statement. You almost have to be sick to put that together, I think.

TAPPER: Well, among that list of deviants would be Erick Erickson.

TRUMP: Well, take a look his past. First of all, he’s a loser.

TAPPER: Jeb Bush, Lindsey Graham, Carly Fiorina.

TRUMP: Jake? Jake? Carly Fiorina? Okay. I mean, give me a break.

RUSH: Okay. Trump is saying that the real deviants are the people assuming what he meant. He never said it but they’re thinking it; so they’re the trash minds. They are the real difference. Here’s a back-and-forth on Meet the Press with Trump and F. Chuck Todd. F. Chuck Todd says, “Why can’t you just apologize, Donald? Why can’t you just apologize, say, ‘You know what? I’m sorry. Some people took it the wrong way’? You seem to have an allergy toward apologizing.”

TRUMP: I said nothing wrong. It’s a very common statement. I said it about Chris Wallace.

TODD: Let me go back to the premise of Megyn Kelly’s question. I found 10 instances — sometimes in your book, sometimes in your Twitter feed — when you went after people like Bette Midler. You went after people like Gail Collins. This is what some women find offensive, Mr. Trump, is that you go to looks. It’s a disparaging thing. It’s something out of Mad Men, sir!

TRUMP: I was attacked viciously by those women. Of course, it’s very hard for them to attack me on looks because I’m so good-looking. But I was attacked very viciously by those women.

RUSH: (laughing) “Of course, it’s very hard for them to attack me on looks because I’m so good-looking.” So they have to attack me viciously in other ways.

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