Trippi and Rove: Only the Tea Party Can Prevent a GOP Wave
March 17, 2014
RUSH: What do you think is the only thing that can stop the Republican wave, folks? This appears to be conventional wisdom now.
I, your host, on February 13th predict a wave. Later that same day, my prediction is pooh-poohed and disqualified because I don't know politics. It happened on Fox. They said that. Then a month later, we had this sound bite montage of all kinds of Republicans and Democrats forecasting a wave election. One month after I predicted it. One month after saying I was crazy, didn't know what I was talking about.
So, given that, what is the one thing that could stop this wave election? What is the one thing? What is, in fact, the only thing? Yes, let's really drill down here and get right to it. What is the only thing that can stop the Republican Party in 2014 and in 2016? What would you say off the top of your head would be the only thing that could stop the Republicans from this big win? I'm talking about the GOP.
What is the one thing that could prevent this big anti-Obama vote?
Well, let's go to Fox News and a program called Happening Now. It happened this morning on Fox News. Gregg Jarrett was speaking with Democrat strategist Joe Trippi about the 2014 midterms. Gregg Jarrett said, "The numbers favor Republicans, but in the states where Democrats normally would win, the president's approval rating is in the tank, which likely is what led to the New York Times story over the weekend, Democrats fearful the president's gonna be dragging 'em down."
By the way, I have that story right here from the New York Times. Obama has become "poisonous" to Democrats. Has hell frozen over? What? That's actually a New York Times story. So Gregg Jarrett is asking Trippi. "Okay, the numbers favor the Republicans, but in the states where Democrats normally would win, the president's in the tank in his approval numbers, which led to that New York Times story. What about all of this?"
TRIPPI: It may be what happens in the Republican primaries, whether they get to the magic number six or not. There are the number of races -- Georgia, Mississippi, and Kentucky --
TRIPPI: -- among them where the Republicans are having the establishment versus the Tea Party fight like they've had in previous years, and how those play out could actually decide whether Republicans can take advantage.
RUSH: Okay, so they're talking about the Senate here, but Trippi is basically saying, "Well, you know, the only thing that could stop this big Republican wave is the Tea Party." Imagine that, folks! A Democrat is saying that the only thing that could stop a Republican wave would be the Tea Party. How would that happen? Well, it's simple. These Tea Party people are a bunch of extremists, racist, pro-life conservatives.
They turn off everybody. They nominate stupid, idiot hick candidates. And if the Tea Party gets too big, they're just gonna ruin it for everybody. The proper way to understand this is to think of the Tea Party today as the modern equivalent of the pro-life movement of the eighties and nineties, which the Republican Party also hated. They just weren't as vocal about hating them. It was more quiet. It was behind the scenes.
Like that dinner party I attended in the Hamptons where this big, rich donor came up and poked me in the chest and said, "What are you gonna do about the Christians?" I said, "What? What do you mean?" "They're killing us! The pro-lifers, they're killing us. I'm embarrassed to go to convention with 'em. My wife's nagging me all the time. They're gonna kill us. We're never gonna win anything so long as we got all these pro-life people."
Well, that's what the Tea Party is now, and the Tea Party has become the equivalent of that (i.e., conservatives). So in the conventional wisdom inside the Beltway, the only thing that can stop the Republican win is the Tea Party. Now, you and I know that the Tea Party is going to be the reason Republicans win. It ain't gonna be the Republicans. It'll be Obama and the Tea Party.
Next up is Karl Rove. Gregg Jarrett said, "So what about that, Karl? You've got Kentucky, Georgia. Republicans might need to win more than six seats here in order to take the Senate."
ROVE: They might. Senator Mitch McConnell is poised for a big win over his challenger, [Matt] Bevin, but Joe is right. Georgia's up in the air. If Paul Brown, who said Todd Akin was right, wins the nomination, Republicans are in deep trouble.
RUSH: Ooh. So Todd Akin equals what? Tea Party! "Right on, Dude! Todd Akin equals Tea Party." So the Tea Party, to both Joe Trippi and Karl Rove, is the only thing that could trip up the Republican win. It took me in a long time to figure something out about why the Republican establishment fears conservatives. I had to be told this, because I had an entirely different perception of this event.
The Republican Party, to this day, associates conservatism with Goldwater, not Reagan. Goldwater, to them... That '64 presidential election was one of probably the most embarrassing moment in their political lives. Not Watergate. That was one guy that could be blamed off and thrown off on one guy who was corrupt. They all thought, "Get rid of Nixon and we're all cool."
The Goldwater defeat, to this day, is what scares the pants off the Republican establishment. They think that any conservative nominee is going to lose in a massive landslide like Goldwater did. Now, you and I say, "Wait a minute. What about Reagan?" They don't look at that. You know, I never even looked at the Goldwater loss as an embarrassment. I looked at it as a beginning.
The Goldwater campaign was the beginning. That is what begot Reagan. The Goldwater campaign is what brought the conservative wing of the Republican Party to actual life and relevance. But the Republican establishment looks at Goldwater's loss as the most formative events in their lives and they're scared to death of it repeating. And to them, Todd Akin is Barry Goldwater. Christine O'Donnell is Barry Goldwater.
Any just pedal-to-the-metal conservative equals Goldwater. You might ask, "Well, how do they ignore Reagan?" They didn't like the fact that Reagan won. So Reagan was an aberration. They say Reagan was Jimmy Carter. I mean, Reagan was an alternative. So they ignore the two landslide wins. They do not credit Reagan's conservatism. In fact, they go back and forth. On the one hand, it's the era of Reagan is over.
"You guys forget this! Conservatism, it's over. It never was a factor." And then on the other hand, what they mean with "the era of Reagan is over" is that conservatism is done. It never had a chance. It was only a one-time deal because of Reagan's powerful personality. So it really wasn't conservatism that won anything. "Conservatism does nothing but lose for us," is what the Republican establishment believes. Then you might say, "Well, JFK was not really a liberal, as you define liberals today."
If you look at JFK and what he did, he was for tax cuts and in some areas he was for reducing the size of government. And then if you look at LBJ, he didn't even enter. He didn't even run for reelection '68 'cause he was gonna lose in a landslide. Only four years after Goldwater the Democrat sitting president had to bow out. It doesn't matter.
I'm just telling you, the Republican establishment thinks that a conservative nominee equals Goldwater, and that was the most embarrassing, humiliating time in their political lives, not just those who are alive today who were alive then. Such has been the teaching of that event, that young Republicans who were not alive then have been told how embarrassing it was and what an extremist Goldwater was. All the ads that they ran and how embarrassed they all were to be a Republican, because of Goldwater.
Then they come up with their selective definitions of Reagan to exempt him, "Reagan really wasn't Goldwater. Reagan was running against Carter. Reagan's power was his personality. Reagan didn't win 'cause he was conservative." And that's what survives. So now the Tea Party may as well be, as far as the establishment is concerned, the Goldwater campaign. That's how they look at it. I'm just telling you so you'll know. 'Cause I can't tell you the number of people who ask me, "Why does the Republican Party hate the Tea Party? Why don't they form a coalition with 'em and have this massive majority and just sweep to victory?" Because they think -- you just heard it here -- Trippi believes that the Tea Party is the only thing that can derail the Republicans, and they really do believe it.
It's not just a lack of objective analysis. They really believe this. And so do a lot of Republican consultants, folks. Just so you know. Meanwhile, the New York Times does have this piece about how Obama has become poisonous for the Democrats. But the Republicans are more frightened of the Tea Party than they are eager to exploit the weaknesses of Obama.
RUSH: The reason why the Republican Party being embarrassed by the Goldwater loss, that never occurred to me. It had to be explained to me. I've always looked at the Goldwater campaign as the birth of a really important, big, successful movement. The Republican establishment looks at it as the most embarrassing, humiliating time in their lives. I always looked at it as a positive.
By the way, there was no way -- you have John Kennedy assassinated in 1963. There is no way anybody's gonna beat LBJ a year later. It isn't gonna happen. There is no way. You could have put Pope John Paul XXIII in there and he wasn't gonna beat LBJ, not a year after Kennedy had died. The only thing that will stop the Republican wave election is if the Tea Party stays home again, like they did in 2012. Do you realize four million Republican votes were not cast.
Voters didn't show up in 2012, and I'm gonna tell you this. If the Republican establishment keeps beating up on these Tea Party types some of them are gonna get ticked off and just stay home. "All right, all right, fine. Okay go win it on your own." The thing is, the Republican establishment would prefer to lose with honor than to have the Tea Party win. That's about where we are. The Tea Party winning or being responsible for the win, that'd be as embarrassing as, "Oh, no, oh, what do we do, now?" 'Cause they would think the Tea Party winning is a bunch of Todd Akins running every committee. That's what they think. Todd Akin and the vice chair would be Christine O'Donnell on every committee. You throw Sharron Angle in as lead counsel for the committee, and they're gonna have heart attacks.
But let's look at some recent histoire. Bob Dole, John McCain, Mitt Romney. Who'd they run like? Didn't they run like moderate Republicans? They lost. Who lost the Senate and House in 2006? Versus who won the House in 2010, and who won the House in 1994? And if you want to go even deeper, George W. Bush wins two elections running as a conservative. He might have said compassionate conservative. George H. W. Bush won his election in 1998 by promising four more years of Reagan-like government.
And then in 1992, George H. W. Bush, you know, the whole "read my lips" and making friends with Tom Foley and these guys, and look what happened to him. I'm telling you, every time the Republican Party goes moderate, goes centrist, goes McCain, they lose! They just lose. The only time the party wins is when they go conservative.
Howard in Edgewater, Florida. Welcome to the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. I'm glad to get through to you. I got through to you once before when McCain was running. Could I say a shout out to my old pal and mentor, Joe Gordon, the egg man. But what I wanted to bring up, I'm 79 tomorrow. I became a Republican in Palm Beach County when you could count 'em on one hand, because I listened to Barry Goldwater. I bought his book, and I thought Barry Goldwater was the real deal. And I remember, I was telling Snerdley, I remember when Goldwater was making his acceptance speech or taking it, there was a picture, I think it was a St. Petersburg paper, of Rockefeller with his middle finger extended, and that's what happened to Goldwater, that's why he lost so bad. Romney --
RUSH: Do you happen to remember where that was?
CALLER: I think it was in the Cow Palace.
RUSH: That's exactly right! It was the Cow Palace in San Francisco and that's when --
RUSH: -- Rocky flipped Goldwater off.
CALLER: Right. And Bob Dole --
RUSH: And he did it again, Rocky flipped off Reagan --
CALLER: That's right.
RUSH: -- in Kansas City in '76.
CALLER: And I was so pissed off about it, excuse me, but I remember Dirksen and all the rest, it never happened. It's just like Peter King from New Jersey bad-mouthing Ted Cruz for doing what he's elected to do --
RUSH: I know. Really, it hasn't changed. It hasn't changed except it's going to. Look, Howard, I appreciate the call. The Cow Palace, and Goldwater's book was The Conscience of a Conservative. That was the title of the book. Rocky did not literally flip off Reagan, but everybody knew he had done it to Goldwater at the Cow Palace in '64. I lived in Kansas City in '76, and I guess I can say Rocky spent most of his time at the Nelson art gallery during the day, because that's what Rockefellers were supposed to do. I mean, there were pictures in the paper of Rockefeller looking at some painting and pointing at it, "Oh, the Rockefellers, they are so wonderful. Look, he knows his art." And then by the time he got to the convention he'd had more than his share of adult beverages and he's sitting back there and he's just throwing his hands up in frustration at Reagan and so forth. It was history repeating itself.
RUSH: Folks, if you didn't know better, you would think that the only candidates who had lost Senate races, Republican candidates who'd lost Senate races, were Tea Party people, if you didn't know any better. But, you know, a lot of Republicans who run for the Senate that are not Tea Party types, they lose, too, because I don't care who you are, you run for elective office, you have to run on principle.
You have to tell people who you are. You have to do that. You have to have a set of core beliefs that people can understand and that you can explain, whether you're Tea Party or not. But the establishment types want you to believe that only Tea Party types lose, and a lot more non-Tea Party Republicans lose than Tea Party people do.