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RUSH: Here’s Joe in Orangeburg, New York, as we head to the phones. Great to have you, sir. Welcome.

CALLER: Hey, mega dittos, Rush. I’m really happy to be on your show. I love your show. I listen to you every single day.

RUSH: Thank you, sir, very much. I appreciate that. That’s a very nice suck-up.

CALLER: I was calling because I never disagree with you, and I technically don’t disagree with you, but I think what you said earlier about why you think Trump may have lost was because of his, you know, indications where, you know, he was showing signs where he was gonna make deals, you know, with Pelosi and the liberal establishment. I agree with that. I do think that that affected him, as far as his numbers last night. But I think as far as the debate, I don’t think it’s because he didn’t go to the debate. I think it’s because why he didn’t go to the debate. You know, the fact that he was afraid, in most perceived minds I think out there or perceived net, he was afraid to go to the debate or was upset about it, afraid to face the fire. And I think —


RUSH: Let me ask you here —

CALLER: — in my mind personally, ’cause that’s what bothered me the most, actually.

RUSH: Okay. Joe, are you a Trumpster or not?

CALLER: I am not. I’m a Cruz supporter.

RUSH: Okay.

CALLER: I’m definitely going for Cruz.

RUSH: Okay. Just want to get that out, no wrong answer here. Nothing accusatory. So you think that not doing the debate did hurt Trump, but because people thought that it looked like he was afraid of Megyn Kelly?

CALLER: I think that’s the perception people have. And the reason why I say that is because that’s the thing you heard most in the news. You didn’t hear about the other things —

RUSH: Now, wait, wait, wait. You gotta tell me from who. You’re in Orangeburg, New York. Where are you hearing people in Iowa say they thought that made Trump look like he was afraid of Megyn Kelly?

CALLER: I don’t know. I just feel that if I was in Iowa and I saw him ditch on the debate because he was afraid of Megyn Kelly and because he’s afraid of some article a guy wrote with, you know, on Fox, it would upset me. It would definitely affect my decision if I was on the borderline —

RUSH: Let me give you an alternative theory. Okay, you’re anecdotally speaking here. You have your theory, and you think a lot of people agree with it, if you could ask them.

CALLER: Yeah.

RUSH: So let me run another theory by you. Let’s say that Trump and his people decided they’re four points up in the polls, they’re winning big, big crowds, you know what was going on. What if they said, “You know what, there’s nothing we can gain showing up here tonight, but if we don’t it’s gonna make Cruz get the center podium and Cruz is gonna be the target. Everybody there is gonna hit Cruz, not me, thereby I need to take Cruz out so let’s make Cruz the focal point. The way to do that’s for me not to show up.” Does that make any sense? Just an alternative theory.

CALLER: It does make sense, but I think it was a calculated mistake on his part by doing that because if he was there, people who were Trump supporters love hearing him, love hearing him talk, love hearing him say what he has to say because he’s outspoken and says things off the cuff a lot. And I think people missed that and wanted to see that the last debate. I mean, I’m just speaking from my own heart as far as how I felt about it. Like I said, I’m voting for Cruz myself, but —

RUSH: Right, so you should have been happy that he didn’t show up.

CALLER: Well, yeah, I was, I actually was and I —

RUSH: You were?

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CALLER: –was listening to your show and I’m saying to myself, “Is this gonna hurt?”

RUSH: Well, I’m out of time here. I don’t mean to be rude, but the clock is the clock. So there it is. Trump didn’t show. People thought it made him look like he was afraid of Megyn Kelly or anybody else that was gonna attack him that night and he just didn’t want to be in that scenario? I don’t think that’s what it was, but feel free, folks.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: I don’t know. I just have a tough time thinking Trump’s afraid. There are plenty of other times in this campaign he could have bumped out of things ’cause he was afraid. There are legitimate things to fear out there, I guess. I think other things were at work. You have to be a narcissist.

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