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RUSH: Patty in Naugatuck, Connecticut, great to have you on the program. You’re up first.

CALLER: Thank you so much for having me. I just wanted to shed a little light onto this Senator Schumer story. Rush, I listened to you for years. And first off I would like to commend you and Senator Cruz for really trying to be truthful, consistent, and honest in explaining to the people this complicated issue and simplifying it that keeps coming up and at times can be very misleading to the American public, even the language. So I have to thank you and I attest to the fact that I have heard on the radio, I’ve listened to your explanations regarding it, I’ve listened to Senator Cruz, and both again have been principled, honest, and consistent in your examination of this bill and presenting it to the American people.

RUSH: Thank you. Thank you very much. I appreciate that.

CALLER: It’s the truth, sir. I’ve heard you over and over, even this year talking about this on the radio. And it does keep coming up, it can be very misleading, and you go to a great extent trying to simplify this for everyone.

RUSH: Thank you. You know why it’s misleading? Because the promoters always shroud the thing in compassion and emotion.

CALLER: Yes, sir.

RUSH: They make it look like we’ve mistreated ’em, how can we do this to people? We’ve got to take them out of the shadows. They’ve been working. They’ve been paying taxes. They’ve been doing jobs that nobody else in America wants to do, and they want to improve their lives, who are we to say no? And the average, ordinary American that pays scant attention to things is gonna glom onto that like white on rice, is gonna make perfect sense to ’em.

CALLER: And you are I’m trying to explain it in a consistent, simple manner so as to not confuse the public and point out the truth. I thank you for that.

RUSH: I appreciate your observation. Thank you for getting it. And folks, by the way, I mean that. There are frustrating things about having a job like this, especially on TV. One of the reasons I don’t do TV anymore is because it seems like all the positive feedback I got had nothing to do with what I’d said, because most people never heard what I said. But I do spend a lot of time trying to be as explicit and simple and clear as I can, and sometimes it gets real frustrating when people don’t understand it. I’m not talking about the people that don’t hear it. I mean people that do. So I appreciate, Patty, very much there.


RUSH: This is Albert in San Francisco. Great to have you on the program, Albert. Hi.

CALLER: Hi, Rush. I was calling about the New York Times story that was in yesterday’s paper that you started your show off with today?

RUSH: Yeah.

CALLER: I think anyone… I think your first analysis might be a little off, because I clearly did not read that article to indicate that you supported, uh, immigration reform or amnesty. Clearly I know you don’t. But the second part of that — or what I got out of that article — which you kind of hit on during kind of the second segment of your show, was how easy you went on Rubio. And clearly I think, at least, because I did listen to your show pretty consistently throughout those few months in 2013, and you clearly did not go after Rubio like you would have against a Lindsey Graham or a John McCain. So I think the part of your analysis is that… The part of your analysis is that I think a lot of people, at least myself, think that you were soft on Rubio on that. You didn’t hit him hard on him being part of the Gang of Eight bill.

RUSH: At the time… This is 2013, the first half of 2013. All I can tell you is when people come on the program, I’m polite to them. At the same time, I am not part of the group of people that tries to eat up, chew up, and spit out members of my own team. So I looked at the interviews with Rubio as an opportunity to have him explain this to me. I knew what I thought about it. I was pretty confident that I was right about it. But I wanted to hear what his explanation was. And because of your interpretation of this, I figured many people would have the same interpretation.

I spent a lot of time reviewing transcripts of my program in the same show that I interviewed Rubio after it was over, the next day, and even into the next month. And, you know… A little side note: I’m always amazed when I go back and read transcripts of this program, how damn good it is. (laughing) Really. I have a different perception going back and reading it versus at the moment doing it. But what I found was that at no time did I ever give the impression that Rubio had converted me.

At no time did I give the impression that Rubio was making ground with me, gaining ground with me. At every stage, even after the interview was over, I would review it for people (which is often what I do here) and expressed problems I had with certain things that in this case Rubio had said in the course of the interviews. And then even a month later I was again detailing where I thought Senator Rubio was wrong and the whole Gang of Eight thing was wrong. And it was all centered around one premise.

And actually the premise that was consistent throughout was embodied in the very first question I asked in the interview: “Why are we doing this?” And the point that I made when I went back and looked at these transcripts — the point that I kept making — was, “Why is it that we’re always reacting to what the Democrats do? I don’t care if it’s this bill or anything else. They propose something, and we stop everything and immediately start debating it as though it’s gonna happen. We’re just gonna try to change it, moderate it a little bit.

“Modify it a little bit. Maybe make it not as big as they want it, but we’re gonna do it,” as though they decide they want something and that’s what’s next on the agenda. And I asked Rubio a number of times in the interview, “Why don’t you just say, ‘No’? Why don’t you just say, ‘No, we’re not gonna do this right now, and we’re not gonna do it the way you want to do’? Why do we have to take their premise and use that as the foundation for the way we go in the future?”

That was my point throughout all of this, and I still maintain that that’s how things operate in Congress and what people are fed up with — one of the many things people are fed up. I have been for the longest time. We were even talking about this last week. All we do, it seems — we on the right — is stand up and say, “Stop!” We’re never advancing our own agenda, whether it be our think tanks, whether it be our elected officials. It turns out that standing up and saying, “Stop!” is not something that happens enough anymore.

But I’m talking about in philosophical terms, the way people on our side raise money. They say, “Help us stop the left! Help us stop the Democrats!” Well, I’m sorry, that’s not enough for me. But they are constantly coming at us on so many fronts in so many ways that at times that is all it seems we have time to do is stop them, rather than advance an agenda. And I’ll tell you, I think one of the many reasons why Donald Trump is proving to be so attractive to people is that there’s nothing defensive about the guy. Every day is on offense.

Now, some people say, “He’s a bully, he’s crude, he’s rude,” all of these things, but he’s on offense. He’s not adopting defensive postures on anything. And I think there are a number of Republicans, conservatives, and even independents and moderates who are fed up with the defensive posture and not being on offense. So my questions for Rubio were twofold. Asking him to explain in detail what he was talking about, what it meant, how it was gonna work, how it wasn’t going to be amnesty.

And I think where people ended up getting confused was I was just polite at the end of the interview and even during them I praised him as being a good conservative, a thorough conservative and so forth. And I’m sure a lot of people asked, “How can you say that? The guy sat there and tried to promote amnesty!” Well, all I can tell you is he got elected on the basis that he was a thoroughbred conservative; he was a brand-new, young firebrand; he was a new Reagan. Look, I live in Florida; that’s where he came from.

And Marco Rubio captivated this whole state during this campaign, going up against Crist and these guys. And memories are short on that, but at no time did I ever agree with him, at no time did I ever join him in promoting what he wanted to get done. If you want to say I gave him airtime to promote his version of things, yeah, guilty. But when those interviews were over, I made clear my disagreement with it over and over, just as I did last week. Thanks for the call, Albert. I appreciate it.


RUSH: One more Rubio thing because I just got another reminder. “Hey, Rush, I don’t want you to get caught short. It was in the last two or three weeks that you were telling people what a great conservative Rubio was.” That’s true, and I remember a lot of blogs picking up on that. Let me explain that to you. Folks, as you might imagine, there’s much that goes on here in my life that I don’t tell you about for a whole host of reasons. But these comments that I had made about Rubio, whatever they were, two, three weeks ago about him being a solid conservative and a good guy, had nothing to do with immigration, and nothing to do with the Gang of Eight.

The reason I did that is because I got irritated. I read a lot of things, and I get a lot of stuff sent to me. And I got tired of all the people ragging on Marco Rubio. I thought it was irrational. And when people send me things, they’re always trying to get me to repeat them. People send me things hoping that I will adopt their thinking on something. Even friends of mine. And the criticism of Rubio, I don’t even remember what it was about. Obviously it was the presidential campaign, something going on, it might have been some Cruz supporters. But they were just really ragging on Rubio in a way I never would. And they were trying to co-opt me into ragging on Rubio like I never would.

And so the next day I remember making a comment on Rubio, that he was a, I thought, solid conservative. It had nothing to do with immigration. It had nothing to do with the Gang of Eight. I don’t remember the specifics. I don’t remember what was going on at the time that people were e-mailing all this rotten stuff about Rubio, but it infuriated me. And even before that happened, Rubio had called here, which I also mentioned. ‘Cause there are people, “Why are you going on about Rubio? Don’t you understand it should be Cruz.”

And I had mentioned that Rubio had called me and we’d had a good conversation about things and he’d explained to me some of his campaign strategy. I’ve also talked to Ted Cruz. I’ve had lunch with Ted Cruz twice. You know that I do not endorse people in these circumstances. So it’s unavoidable that you’re gonna hear things out of context, even though the context would be impossible unless I would tell you everything that was responsible for me saying something.

And this episode three weeks ago could, I guess, continue to give the trolls out there fodder to say that I am secretly trying to push amnesty, which they’re still I’m trying to say, and it’s patently absurd. But I’m just mentioning this to you because I am not denying anything. It’s crazy. This is all documented now, and I wanted to mention this just to make sure nobody could say I’m covering something up or hiding something, ’cause nothing of the sort is going on.


RUSH: Yeah, I just looked it up. It was February 3rd on this program, and I remember what ticked me off. I was reading people accusing Marco Rubio of being part of the group that wanted to say “the era of Reagan is over” and that Rubio’s a reprobate. And I just don’t believe any of that, so I said so. Nothing to do with immigration, and nothing to do with the Gang of Eight. And that’s that.

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