RUSH: As is now routine, your host was the subject of much discussion yesterday and over the weekend in the Drive-By Media. Sunday morning CNN Inside Politics… Who hosts that, normally? (interruption) Is it Jake Tapper? (interruption) No. (interruption) It’s Candy Crowley? (interruption) No. She’s long gone. Is it…? Well, I don’t know who the standard host is. Dana Bash was filling in, and she had as her guest, political writer Perry Bacon from FiveThirtyEight (that’s Nate Silver’s polling extraordinaire site) and Washington Post national security correspondent Karoun Demirjian and they were talking about me, and something I had said last week about how Trump can overcome the daily assault from the Drive-By Media. Dana Bash played the clip and got reaction to it.
Here’s how it started…
BASH: I want to play for you something that Rush Limbaugh said about this whole notion of White House chaos and talk on the other side.
RUSH ARCHIVE: This White House chaos? I have said from the get-go that the one way past all of this is to simply march this agenda through. … If that means Trump has to get up to speed on every line in every piece of legislation and be able to sell it to the American people in appearance after appearance, then that’s what it’s gonna take. If it’s gonna require Trump doing the heavy lifting because there’s nobody better as being Trump than Trump, then that’s what it’s gonna take.
BASH: So that’s a really nice thought. (snickering)
BASH: But I’m not sure how realistic it is.
RUSH: What are they laughing at there? In all candor. “So that’s a really nice thought. But I’m not sure how realistic it is.” Somebody help me out. Seriously, what is she…? (interruption) They don’t think Trump’s capable of learning things line by line? They don’t think Trump’s capable of learning it well enough to sell it? That’s what she says. “So that’s a nice thought. But I’m not sure how realistic it is. (snickering),” and then the whole panel starts laughing.
Okay. So Trump’s a buffoon. You know, they haven’t gotten over that NBC video, when you get right down to it. I can’t tell you the number of times I still read… I can’t repeat it. I can’t repeat. But that… (interruption) No. The Billy Bush thing, where he’s walking out of the trailer and talking about how he can grab because once you’re rich and famous woman love it and all that. They haven’t gotten over it. You know, these girlie boys that are the so-called men in the establishment?
They still write about this as though it’s the greatest verbal gaffe and offense that they’ve ever heard, and they can’t believe the guy got elected. They can’t believe that he hasn’t been shunned off to a leper colony because of that statement. Literally! I still read ’em. I still read people aghast at that. That one comment, of course, was on top of Trump saying he didn’t respect military people that get captured. That came after Trump calling Mexican illegal immigrants criminals and rapists and drug dealers and so forth.
By the way, you know all of that — after a fashion — was poll-tested? You think Trump just ad-libbed that stuff when he came down the escalators June 15th? You think that he was just ad-libbed? Even if it hadn’t been, do you think he just wrote that and it was off the cuff? Believe me, that was tested, and it had been verified. The testing was verified that it was gonna reach a significant portion of the population — and, of course, the establishment was gonna miss it.
The establishment, both parties — “the sophisticated cosmopolitans,” as described by “Fried Zucchini,” Fareed Zakaria. I mean, he’s the one that called these people and himself cosmopolitans, and they just beside themselves. There’s such a disconnect. But that comment that Trump made about… about… Well, “grabbing,” okay? Does that help you? If you don’t know what it was, that should remind you. They’re still not over that, folks. That was the kill shot. That was gonna take Trump out — and not only did it not take Trump out (laughing), he won.
It’s just… It’s a nightmare for them. So they still have this idea of Trump. “It’s a nice thought, but Trump learning legislation? Ha-ha-ha-haaaaa!” That’s what they’re laughing about. So it’s time for the esteemed sophisticates and cosmopolitans on the panel to react to my sound bite there. Essentially, Trump can get past all this by ramming that agenda through, getting it passed — and there’s nothing they could do if he can make that happen. And I believe he can, by the way, or I wouldn’t have said that. I believe he can. That’s what The Art of the Deal is all about.
I happen to think that’s what many Trump supporters are waiting to see. I believe he can do it. And if he did? If he can get tax cuts, if they ram something through on major tax cuts and go back to Obamacare? If that happens, then you’re gonna see panic like you haven’t seen it before on the left. So here come the sophisticates and the cosmopolitans led off by Perry Bacon (who, as I said, is at FiveThirtyEight) and then Karoun Demirjian from the Washington Post.
BACON: The top of what he said is right.
BACON: If the health care bill had passed by now or if the tax reform had passed, we would not be talking about White House infighting. He’s right.
BACON: If you get the agenda passed, that’s it. This idea that the information flow has to change? That’s probably true. But is Kelly going to stop Fox & Friends from being aired? Because I think a lot of the information is coming —
BASH: Do they have —
BACON: — from the president —
BASH: — to take away his — his TV?
BACON: — his cell phone, his TV —
BASH: Do they have to take away his TV?
BACON: — take away some of the friends he calls? I mean, the idea that information is being handed to him that’s wrong is probably not right. He’s seeking out information that confirms that what his views already are.
RUSH: Now, were you able to pick out the meat of that? (interruption) Okay. I’ll tell you. That’s why I’m here. That’s why I’m here. This does require translation, and it takes a veteran of the liberal wars like me to be able to translate it. This is a quintessential example of my value and worth. This guy, Perry Bacon, says (paraphrased), “The top of what Limbaugh’s saying is right. Yeah, yeah. If he got the agenda passed, yeah, yeah, we wouldn’t be talking about White House infighting. Yeah, Limbaugh’s right. Yeah, he’s right. Yeah. Begrudgingly, yeah, he’s right.”
And then the other one, “Yeah, but then wuh, wuh…? How can he do that ’cause he won’t stop watching Fox & Friends? Are they gonna have to turn off the TV?” They’re basically saying, Mr. Snerdley, that Trump is too crazy and too distracted to push his agenda through because he is watching Fox & Friends. Now, wait. These people are not trying to be funny. Remember, these are people that don’t have a sense of humor. They’re not trying to be funny.
These people literally believe that Donald Trump watches Fox & Friends front to back and makes policy on the basis of what he sees, makes statements and tweets on the basis of what he sees. How do we know that? You’ve heard that, have you not? How have you heard that? Who told you this? The White House put this out, did they not? I mean, how do reporters know what Trump’s watching unless somebody in the White House tells ’em? So the point is, if the White House… Let’s say it’s somebody in the Trump White House who may not be happy.
It’s somebody leaking, “Yeah, this guy, all he does is watch Fox & Friends,” or maybe it’s somebody trying to misdirect the media and distract them. Get them looking elsewhere. “Yeah, the guy, it’s really funny! He watches Fox & Friends every morning and he takes notes and he tweets and so forth.” The point is they believe it. These sophisticates and these cosmopolitans — and these erudite, refined members of the media — really think that Trump is a buffoon and incompetent and incapable because he watches Fox & Friends.
Of course at the same time he’s watching Morning Joe. We’ve also heard that. Oh no, he turned them off. That’s right. Now it’s just Fox & Friends. I am amazed that these are otherwise intelligent people who have convinced themselves or have had other people convince them that this man who has put together this amazing business — I’m not trying to sound like I’m on the Trump PR team, but what Trump has done in his life is not insignificant.
He has become a profound success, and winning the presidency is not an accident. And it’s not the result of collusion. This man has outsmarted these people all along the way. From the beginning of the 2016 campaign, which was the summer of 2015, he has outsmarted them all along the way. Now, they will never admit that. “Trump’s smarter than us? It’s the American people that are stupid, all those yokels that voted for the guy.”
So they can be led to believe that Donald Trump — look, did you see the Newsweek cover? I got that cover, I saw it with 10 minutes left in the program on Friday. You didn’t see this? I watched this over the weekend. I saw it and it ticked me off that I didn’t have time to get it in. Newsweek ran a cover story with Trump sitting in his coat and tie on the sofa holding a bag of chips in one hand, a TV remote in the other, and all kinds of junk food surrounding him.
And the cover was how he’s lazy and doesn’t get anything done. He’s basically a schlub and a couch potato who does nothing but watch Fox & Friends and then Fox & Friends reruns all day, eating potato chips, drink Coke or whatever he drinks, water, whatever it is. I was on the way to California that afternoon, Neil Cavuto did almost a whole hour on this. Neil Cavuto is a Never Trumper for the most part, not a big Trump guy. He thought this was so far out of bounds because it’s the exact opposite of the truth.
Trump is a workaholic! Trump does not sit on the couch watching television, eating junk food. I mean, to characterize it as wrong doesn’t get even close to how atrocious it was. But the point is these sophisticates and these brainiacs who think they’re smarter than everybody else, can be led to believing these things so easily. So they have this picture of Trump that there’s no way he could marshal his own agenda. “I don’t even think Trump knows what agenda is,” have you seen that one? “I don’t even think Trump knows what the agenda is. Mike Pence knows what the agenda is, but Trump, he doesn’t.”
The put-downs of this man who outsmarted them all along the way, who has gotten more done — who was the guy that rolled into the Oval Office at ten o’clock every morning? That would be one Barack Hussein O. And what did he do when he got to the Oval Office? Turned on Sports Center and if it was basketball season head over there to the little study and start working on your brackets. And how about Trump goes to New Jersey for 17 days to get away from the White House ’cause they got some renovations and the media goes nuts. “Trump’s already on a vacation, this is unreal! Trump’s already taking a vacation! This is silly. He’s not serious!”
By this time Obama had taken five vacations and Michelle had taken three of her own. Anyway, I think Trump is — contrary you’ll never see it portrayed this way in the Drive-Bys — I think Trump is outsmarting these people in a lot of ways and they’re just getting frustrated they can’t take him out, it’s getting ridiculous.
So now it’s a laughable thing that he would be able to advance his own agenda and get it done despite what’s already been accomplished in 200 days, despite winning the presidency from the smartest woman in the world, with the smartest campaign staff in the world, and beating the smartest media in the world. Yeah, this guy’s a genuine idiot.
Now, here’s Karoun Demirjian, and she is weighing in late on this idea of mine that all Trump has to do to get past the chaos is do the agenda.
DEMIRJIAN: What is the agenda? I mean, you can say healthcare and tax reform, but you need details and Trump is not a details guy. And so how is he going to sell that in sound bites? It’s not his thing.
RUSH: He’s not a details guy, so how is he going to sell the agenda? Remember during the campaign, my friends, do you remember the numerous stories on how detail oriented and aware Donald Trump was in his business. Construction projects, wearing the hard hat out there designing and figuring out which bolts and rivets and nails and screws and so forth. He was portrayed as a detail guy, but one who also delegated.
He gets to the White House, now he doesn’t know anything. He’s a couch potato. He doesn’t know how to speak to people. He can’t control his White House, all from people who haven’t accomplished 10% of what this man has accomplished, whatever they think of him.