RUSH: To the phones we go. This is Jeff in Boyne City, Michigan. Great to have you, sir, I’m glad you waited, I appreciate that. Hello.
CALLER: Thank you, Rush, decades long listener, first-time caller.
RUSH: Great to have you here.
CALLER: I’m a wee bit confused with the criticism over Donald Trump making comments about Carly’s looks. What I’d like to know, if you could explain to me, where the geopolitical lines are drawn anatomically because people make fun of his hair, the spittle in the corner of his mouth, the colors he wears. I mean, he’s under the microscope.
RUSH: Right. Yeah, here’s the thing, though. You see, you know this as well as I do. There are double standards in this with a man. I mean, how many — how many — no, I don’t want to go about it that way. It is considered fair game to attack a guy’s looks because it’s not a guy’s looks that are considered to be the most attractive aspect. Well, it used to not be. You know, with the low-information voters and the pop culture crowd and their surface interests, it may well be now. But men are judged in entirely different ways. Meaning if you want to make fun of Trump’s hair color or hairstyle, it’s fair season, it’s open season, fair game, whatever. Men are not allowed to complain about that.
But women, you can’t do it. You’re not supposed to go there. Nobody can control the way they look. Nobody had a right to choose whatever genes they got, no matter the fact that people go DNA shopping before they get married. Now, I’m convinced of that. I could name names. I’d get in trouble if I did. I could name a big name right now that went DNA shopping. Get married, just before she had reproductive sex with some clown. But you can’t do that with women. Are you suggesting by the way, Jeff, are you just being provocative here or do you think this is no big deal and people should not be holding Trump to any kind of serious account for this?
CALLER: No, I honestly think it’s no big deal. He’s just simply firing back over all the criticism he receives.
RUSH: Yeah, but did she criticize his hair, did she make fun of —
CALLER: No. She individually did not.
RUSH: All right. So in the circles —
CALLER: All is fair game. If you’re gonna play in that arena be prepared for it.
RUSH: Well, I understand that, but do you work in an office?
CALLER: I do.
RUSH: How much latitude do you have to run around the office and start making fun of — say there’s a horse faced woman that works down the hall from you and you start talking about it.
CALLER: (laughing) Well, I certainly don’t tell the, “Why the long face” joke.
RUSH: (laughing) I mean, but you wouldn’t do it anyway. I mean, you’d be run out of the place. Or you’d have a serious HR problem.
CALLER: True that, depending on the relationship you have with that person.
RUSH: Even if you don’t, somebody who is a friend of that personal who may not like you is gonna hear about it and take you right down to HR and you’re not gonna have any defense for it.
CALLER: That’s true. I mean, it’s thin ice.
RUSH: So why is it in politics everything’s fair game but in the office, the firehouse, the police station, or wherever else you want to go it’s not?
CALLER: Well, that’s where the PC has all seeped into.
RUSH: I’ll tell you, let me tell you something. This has necessity flabbergasted in a lot of ways. I mean, people have said far less than this kind of thing and have been destroyed by the media, have been run out of their lives, their businesses or what have you. On CNN they’re actually debating today, while they’re laughing about it, whether or not this is a new day, whether it’s okay, whether Trump can survive it. There was no condemnation.
RUSH: Here is Jason, Fort Myers, Florida. Great to have you on the Rush Limbaugh program. Hi.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. Thanks for taking my call. Longtime listener, first time successful caller, and I also want to comment on Trump’s recent comment about Carly Fiorina. To me, that’s not presidential at all. I told, Mr. Snerdley: In my mind, at least, that reminds me of a kid in fourth grade that’s losing an argument and can’t come up with anything better. They just resort to, “I know you are, but what am I?” That’s all he’s doing. He can’t articulate any position, really, as (garbled) Ted Cruz’s four points. That’s what a president does. Donald Trump has a day or two to think of a comeback, and he just comes up with: (paraphrased) “Yeah, well, you’re ugly.” That’s not presidential material.
RUSH: So you think, if I heard you right, that Trump is doing all of this stuff because he doesn’t really have positions that he can explain on issue after issue, so this is how he’s dealing with that?
CALLER: Yeah, I don’t think it’s an intelligent comeback, and I don’t even think it’s a mature comeback in any way. I don’t think he has any points compared to somebody like Ted Cruz. Bobby Jindal pretty much, after you played… You know, I’ve been on the line for a while now and you played Bobby Jindal’s remarks, and he kind of summarizes my feelings, too. Trump’s just not presidential at all. Presidents don’t — presidential candidates don’t make remarks like that.
RUSH: Now, that’s an interesting question. Don’t misunderstand. I’m not debating. I’m not disagreeing. I’m observing. When you say, “It’s not presidential,” I know what you mean. But to me, Obama isn’t either. I mean, if presidential is he gives off the air of confidence, okay, he is. But, my God, he’s a disaster.
RUSH: He’s an absolute disaster. You know, it’s like talking about defining somebody as intelligent or smart. Really? Are they smart because they can use words and phrases, and pause the right way to make themselves sound intellectual when they’re absolutely blooming common-sense idiots? You know, what is “smart”? So what is presidential? You think name-calling is petty and childish.
CALLER: Yes. I think even further that your man-child reference to Obama can be continued into Trump’s term, should he win. But I think Trump, like it or not, is gonna have to work with Democratic senators and congressman and diplomats and all kinds of people. What’s he gonna resort to, just petty little remarks like that when he doesn’t want to deal with somebody?
RUSH: Well, I don’t know. It could… Some of that actually could be fun. I mean, frankly, is it really…? For example, is it really impolitic or in the shallow end to refer to Anthony Weiner as a perv? Or is it true? And is it presidential or not presidential? I mean, you know what Anthony Weiner did, right?
CALLER: Yeah. Yeah.
RUSH: Okay. Trump says, “He’s a perv. He’s a he’s a sick perv. His wife has got secret classified data and is probably sharing it with this perv. It’s a situation we shouldn’t have to deal with,” blah, blah, blah.
CALLER: Perversion’s a choice, though, but your hair… Well, I guess your hairstyle’s a choice. But how Carly Fiorina’s born or anybody else is born?
CALLER: That’s not a choice and it’s… I don’t know. To me, it’s just the same as a fourth grader that can’t come up with any better argument so just resorts to, “I know you are, but what am I.” He even had time to think out a better response than that and after a day, he still couldn’t come up with something better.
RUSH: Okay. I get your drift. I know what you’re saying. This is not the kind of stuff that you want to hear a president saying, and so you don’t want to hear a presidential candidate saying it. It’s beneath what you believe the station of the office is. I suspect a lot of people agree with you. But, on the other hand, there are a lot of people who think all of this enforced politeness and propriety is what’s leading the country astray because it’s preventing people from being honest about the things they actually see and believe from high positions of leadership.
They’re being done to destroy the country.
At that point you throw politeness out and you call a spade a spade, whatever it is, and that’s why Trump — one of the many reasons why Trump — continues to grow his support. We’ll see. You know, I guarantee you the establishment is probably rubbing their hands together today wherever these people gather. You know, I don’t know where their clubhouse is. It’s not a clubhouse. I’m sorry. The Grillroom or the country club.
I don’t know where the establishment goes, but I guarantee that wherever they are, they’re rubbing their hands in glee. “He’s done it now! You just don’t call a woman ugly and get away with it, not in American politics. You just don’t do it.” They’re rubbing their hands; they think this is it. They think the next series of polls are gonna show a bunch of people abandoning Trump because of this. Here’s Mike in Salt Lake City. You’re next and it’s great to have you. Hi.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. I think that Trump is a big fan of your show. He’s acknowledged that. He’s said that. I think he’s taking a page out of your playbook, Rush. I think you can take credit for this one.
RUSH: I’ve been waiting for this.
CALLER: It was several months ago I remember listening to your show and —
RUSH: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve been waiting for this.
CALLER: — you were stating that you didn’t want to particularly look at Hillary Clinton for the next eight years.
RUSH: That’s not exactly what I said. I asked the question. I was speaking, actually, sympathetically.
RUSH: He’s not buying that out there.
RUSH: I can tell. I can hear him laughing about it. I asked the question, ’cause men can age and they are assumed to be maturing and becoming smarter and more powerful. When women do, it’s not the same. So I asked, “Do the American people really want to watch a woman age dramatically in office when it’s the Oval Office?” I did. I asked that question. You’re right.
CALLER: Not Hillary Clinton, Rush. I mean, Carly Fiorina. Fiorina, I could watch her age. I think she’s an attractive woman. But not Hillary Clinton, not for the next four to eight years.
RUSH: Yeah. Well, yeah. (chuckling) I’ve been waiting for somebody to remember that. I knew it was gonna happen. But I did offer that when it… The context of that was… I don’t know if it was exactly during Operation Chaos. But it was around that time, and we were trying to keep her candidacy alive just for the sake of material here on the show, ’cause the Republican nomination was over. McCain had it wrapped up, and how exciting was that? We needed the Democrat campaign to go on.
So Operation Chaos was to keep Hillary alive, keep that campaign alive. And it required me to be somewhat sympathetic here and there, and supportive within bounds of what she was trying to do. And then something has happened. Somebody had made some comment about pantsuits or some such thing, and I remember coming into the studio that day with mock outrage over how anybody could be so rude and impolite to such a valiant woman who has given everything she had (which wasn’t much) for this country.
RUSH: Let me take a brief departure, change of direction just a bit before we get back to phone calls and Trump and Carly Fiorina. I have to tell you, folks, I am still capable of being surprised, and I will admit that I’m being surprised by an overwhelming number of reactions to Trump’s references to Fiorina’s appearance. One of the common threads that I am seeing is, “Hey, everybody wants equality. Well, come on! This is what happens in politics. This is what happens the primaries. Everything’s fair game. What’s the big deal?”
So we’ll see. My evidence here purely anecdotal, nothing scientific to it.
RUSH: Okay. Here we are back to the phones. We’re gonna go to Swansboro, North Carolina. This is Maria. Great to have you with us. Hi.
CALLER: Hello, Rush. I’m a Donald Trump supporter and a Ben Carson supporter. And I’m trying to vacillate between the two, and I’m starting to get a little soft on Donald Trump because I’m just getting a bit weary of always having to worry about what some crazy thought he has in his head that he feels the need to verbalize out loud. I know he likes to boast about his approvals of 30%, but the truth is I don’t think he realizes this, but I think he would be at 40%, 45%.
He is an incredible person. He’s captivating, he’s exciting, and he’s pouring cold water on his own campaign by talking the way he does. I don’t want my president to sound like he’s in sixth grade. I’m sorry, but I don’t. And I think a lot of people who support Trump also support Ben Carson. I know people may not understand that, but I think, you know, Ben Carson might end up being the far better candidate, and I think that if he does win the nomination, for three reasons, I think he’s unbeatable. Donald Trump, if he wins the nomination, could end up sinking his own campaign with this rhetoric. Carson will not, and no one else is gonna sink him, either.
RUSH: You just said something interesting here to me, when you said that you think if he hadn’t dispensed or if he hadn’t uttered all these childish insults of people, he’d be at 40 or 45%.
CALLER: Yes, I do.
RUSH: Now, what’s fascinating about that is he’s at 32 now, which is way ahead of everybody in the latest Quinnipiac. And most people are thinking that’s great. Most people are thinking he’s gone way beyond what anybody’s expectations were, probably his. You’re the only person I’ve heard, this is an interesting point, saying he would be even higher were it not for this, while other people think, they’re confused, they can’t believe he got to 32% while doing this. So look, Maria, hang on. I want to explore this further with you. I don’t have time here. There’s the ear-splitting tone even as we speak.
RUSH: Okay, we’re back with Maria in Swansboro, North Carolina. I think a lot of people gonna agree with you when they hear you say that Trump would be at 45% or maybe even higher if he had not, say, had the spat with Megyn Kelly or at least the prolonged spat with Megyn Kelly.
CALLER: Well, I don’t know if it’s any one particular thing.
RUSH: No, it’s a cumulative thing, but —
CALLER: I’ve talked to a lot of people. I live in a very conservative area, Rush. I talk to a lot of people and I hear people say, “I love Donald Trump. I really like Donald Trump. But I’m worried. I don’t know. You know, I’d like to support him, but I’m just not sure.” And, you know, Donald Trump is a smart guy. He likes to boast about 30%, but shame on him. He shouldn’t be at 30%. A guy like him should be at 40%.
RUSH: Well, that’s my point. I think it’s cumulative. You say you don’t want to focus on one thing, but he has had these personal comments about people. Some people, many times; others, just once or twice. But your overall point is, if that hadn’t happened, he’d be 45%, maybe even higher. So my question to you is: Can he walk it back? Can he…?
RUSH: Well, how? How would he do it? I mean, you can’t take back what he said. What would…?
CALLER: Now, wait. He has survived everything he’s done so far. And he’s a smart guy. And when he’s on TV and he’s talking issues, he is captivating. It almost makes you forget everything he’s done in the past, everything that he has said. And if he would just stay on that from here to election, to the nomination to Election Day, he’s our next president.
RUSH: So you are saying he needs to just stay on issues?
CALLER: Well, that just sounds… I know it sounds so cliche, but Donald Trump, it isn’t even just about issues. Just talk to us. Talk to the people.
CALLER: He can be an excellent communicator, and he just doesn’t need to step into the gutter. You know, just stay out of there. That’s for the blogs. That’s for the… That’s for the, you know, the comment section when people read articles. Stay out of there. That’s not where you need to be. He needs to be sitting there on interviews. I love listening to him. I can’t leave the TV. I just want to listen to him. I can listen to him all day long. So he can recover from this.
CALLER: He just has to stop.
RUSH: How? For you personally, how? You’ve got, it seems to me… Like, this is out there now. Therefore it is real. Therefore it’s part of who he is. How does he walk it back? He just stops doing it and let inertia take over?
CALLER: Absolutely. Absolutely. Because I… Look, I like to read the comments on certain things and people want to support him. A lot of people do.
RUSH: You’re not —
CALLER: A lot of minorities do. Sure they do. They do. And I just believe that, you know, they just want to see who he is.
RUSH: Ah, he’s getting 25% of the African-American vote in recent CNN or Quinnipiac. One of the two, I forget which, but —
CALLER: Well, you know, there hasn’t been a vote cast yet.
RUSH: Yeah, I know.
CALLER: And that’s key here, and a lot of people who support Donald Trump, I believe they also support Ben Carson.
CALLER: And I think there’s a lot of vacillating going on between the two, and I think that Ben Carson is gonna start creeping up more and more.
RUSH: Okay, let me ask you a question, but I’ll tell you how this Fiorina thing happened, and I’m not… There’s no test, so there’s no wrong answer. I just want to know what your genuine reaction to this is. The way this all happened, he’s granted an interview to Rolling Stone — which, to me, is a waste of time. This is the bunch that made up a huge story about rape at the University of Virginia. Just literally made it up!
I don’t know why they rated, but he did it.
What happened was the Rolling Stone reporter was granted a lot of access and followed Trump around for a week or so and gained his confidence, Trump. The longer the media’s with you, the less you are aware of their presence. I can assure you that this is the case. And the longer they’re around you and the more the media seems to be… Well, the less adversarial they are, then the closer you think you’ll be coming to them. You begin to think you can take them into your confidence in the sense that you can wink and nod and say something and they’ll know you’re not serious and not use it.
But that’s not what happened. So Trump is being followed around by this reporter at Rolling Stone. He gained his confidence and then turned around and did a hit piece on all these things that Trump had said when Trump was of the opinion it was if not off the record, then it was… He thought he was dealing with a friendly, and he wasn’t. This is it. Rolling Stone’s never gonna be friendly to anybody that doesn’t have a (D) by their name.
CALLER: Well, I… My feeling is that they didn’t put those words into his mouth. Donald Trump wants to call — you know, wants to say something about Carly Fiorina, he can say something else. He doesn’t have to sound like this is a schoolyard fight. I think it’s silly to say, “You know, look at that face.” It’s just silly. I’ve heard him say… I’m not a Marco Rubio fan, but I heard him on something say, “I hate him.” How do you…? I don’t want my president to say he hates people.
CALLER: I don’t want to have to worry every single day, “Oh, no, what silly thing did he say today?” You know, especially if he’s president. After four years, that gets old. And I just know that… I know he’s smarter than this. I don’t know why… I don’t know what his strategy is here. But if I could offer him any advice at all I’d say, look, he doesn’t need to do this, Rush. He doesn’t need this.
RUSH: No, no, he’s doing it on purpose. There’s a reason behind this. These are not… I don’t think they’re slip-ups. I think that he really believes that part of the reason he’s doing well is his blunt, politically incorrect honesty.
CALLER: Do you think that he would still feel like that if he was president or do you think this all comes to an end, the silliness?
RUSH: I don’t have any idea. I don’t know. If Putin does something bad to the country or tries to do something bad, I think he’d make fun of Putin for running around without a shirt all the time, it’s embarrassing. And you’d probably love it.
CALLER: (laughing) Yeah, probably.
RUSH: If it was about Putin.
CALLER: Yeah, that would be kind of fun. I think Putin might even have a little laugh at that, but I just think that —
RUSH: Well, you’d be cheering that. Here’s another analogy, just to give you an idea. This is off the top of my head, but let’s take a little hypothetical. So Trump has said what he said about Carly Fiorina. (imitating Trump) “That face, are you kidding, who’s gonna vote for her? My God, freight train, dirt road, for crying out loud.” Now, if somebody in the media comes along and agrees with him, you know the person in the media is gonna be raked over the coals. If somebody, some poor talk show host out in East Overy says, “You know what? Trump has a point,” that guy is finished. Trump can say it and we’re sittings here debating, “Oh, my God, I really wish he’d cut it back,” but if somebody comes along and agrees with him, it’s over for them, how about that?
CALLER: Well, I’ll tell you what, Rush. As long as he doesn’t say anything bad about you, he might recover.
CALLER: But if he starts adding you to the mix —
RUSH: Well, look, I’ll just tell you this, if I attacked him, he would.
CALLER: Yeah, probably.
RUSH: That’s his modus operandi. If you go after him, he’s gonna fire back, and he’s not gonna apologize for it. Leave me alone, I’ll leave you alone. Leave me alone, act like you like me, I’ll like you. He’s been very open and clear about it.
CALLER: Well, you know what, he can fire back. I don’t mind him firing back. I just don’t think it needs to sound like we’re in sixth grade and we’re in a school yard fight. I think he can do it and sound more like a grown-up.
RUSH: Well, the one thing I agree with you about, and not just one, but I really do think, if he would do two things, stay on this immigration thing and keep talking about it and relate it to, say, what’s happening in Europe, keep building on it, and then introduce whatever it is he thinks on some other issues. There are a lot of things out there he hasn’t addressed yet. I think you’re right, I think he could be at 45% by now.
RUSH: Whether he does this stuff or not, but I think the key for him is to broaden the issue base and to appear not just conversant, but he’s got to have rock solid confident ideas about all of these things that do present problems. He’s a solutions guy. That’s what people want to hear.
CALLER: Well, I think, like I said, I think he could be a lot higher in the polls, and shame on him for not being higher in the polls.
RUSH: Well, but according to you he’s still got a chance, he can still redeem himself if he just stops it. He doesn’t have to address it. (imitating Trump) You know, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve allowed myself to get distracted.” By the way, he’ll never acknowledge he’s done anything wrong. Not in the way that people do when they’re apologizing. He will never, ever do that. Unless he thinks he did. He will not apologize because it’s the politically correct or the supposed mannerly thing to do. Anyway, Maria, I appreciate the call. I’m glad you had such time.