The Republican Party Looks to Losers to Tell Them How to Win
June 20, 2011
RUSH: Let me say up front, I don't have anything against Jon Huntsman, folks, and I'm not endorsing anybody. I'm not trying to send any kinda subliminal or other message that you ought to not like anybody at this stage in the Republican field. That's not the point here. What's going on is so predictable, and it's frustrating as it can be. The reason why the media on both sides, the Drive-Bys and even the inside the Beltway conservative intelligentsia, there is this paranoid belief that independents do not like conservatives. It's no more complicated than that. It is the belief that if Republicans are to get the votes of independents that they have to nominate a moderate.
Now, the elections of 2010 throw cold water on that theory. You know it as well as I know it. It's BS. But it's a holdover, it's etched in stone, it's political consultant 101. And the reason -- you put two things together to understand this. If you are a political consultant and your objective, your job is to get somebody elected, then you automatically are going to believe that your work is made up of appealing to and persuading 20 to 25% of the voting population. The rule of thumb is that 40% of the voters are gonna go Democrat, 40% are going to go Republican, and the remaining 20%, the great undecideds who are smarter than everybody else, these are the wonderful moderates, the wonderful independents. You know, these people, you go to the library and you read all about 'em, you've seen the book, Great Moderates in American History. I'm sure you've seen that book. I'm sure you've seen Great Independents in American History. You've read those books, I'm certain.
The theory is therefore that if I, as a consultant can get you elected, I have to do it by getting that 20% to vote Republican, and they're not gonna vote Republican if you're conservative, and that's what they believe. They genuinely believe it and then coupled with the fact that they themselves don't like conservatism or conservatives. It's because of the principle, you know, conservatives are conservative and they arrive at that intellectually. There's nothing chosen as a matter of convenience in a conservative. A conservative is there because it's in his heart, in his gut, and his soul. It's not something that's been calculated. Every other political position is calculated, even being a moderate, but particularly especially being a liberal. That is a calculated position. It is this devotion to principle which scares everybody else and the confidence that comes with being attached to your principles and core beliefs. It frightens people.
So that's why throughout the media today, everywhere, ours and theirs, the Second Coming is announcing tomorrow, Jon Huntsman. And it's not so much that Huntsman is the Second Coming because there's anything particularly special about Huntsman. It's that he's a moderate. Now, I know and you know that the vaunted independents voted conservative in droves in November. Now, you might be shouting at your radio,"They might have voted conservative, but that wasn't the choice they made, Rush, they chose to vote opposed to Obama." Okay, fine, I'll take that. They voted against Obama. What was the alternative? The alternative was conservatism. I thought the independents didn't like conservatives. I've always been told the independents don't want to go anywhere near the social issues. They made a beeline for 'em. "No, they didn't, Rush, they made a beeline away from Obama." Yeah, but they ended up someplace in doing this.
There is a mental block, folks. Certain Republicans are content to lose elections if they maintain allegiance to the belief that conservatism will turn off moderates. It's the most amazing thing to witness and it's frustrating at the same time because these are the people that lose elections. We've got evidence and data, overwhelming, voluminous in its amount, and still the Republican establishment will not accept that the coveted independents are conservative on every single issue according to polling data. According to polling data Obama's in the minority on every issue. And if you look where the independents are, they are in the majority, and they are with the majority on every single issue. So we have to explain this, and then run the risk in explaining it of sounding defensive, and that's the last thing that I want to do.
So here they're going out, talking to John Weaver. I've got nothing against John Weaver. I don't know him; I don't think if I saw him I would recognize him. All I know is he ran McCain's campaign, and we know how that went. By the way, speaking of McCain. Folks, McCain's out there saying all these wildfires out in Arizona were started by illegals. McCain also went on Meet the Press yesterday and started ripping the entire Republican presidential field for being from the Pat Buchanan wing, for being isolationists, you know, wanting to enforce the War Powers Act and make sure that what we're doing in Libya is legal. I mean it's breathtaking. It's like McCain's a dog and every Republican's a fire hydrant and here he comes. Get the picture? I'm thinking what is going on here? There aren't any isolationists out there on our side. There are people who want to know what vital American interests are at stake.
I have a simple question for Senator McCain and the Democracy Project types. If your belief is the United States is gonna go anywhere, I mean this quote about he said Khadafy was on the verge of people's doorsteps or their front doors and is gonna come in and run around and kill people and we should not let that happen. We gotta stop Khadafy at every chance. Well, why, senator, and the rest of you in this Democracy Project, why are you not urging military action in Sudan? Why are you not urging military action in the Congo? If it is our place in every case to use our military where there are human rights violations on this kind of scale, where's your demand for our intervention there? If Congo and Sudan are not right for our intervention, we gotta know why. Libya is good? Libya fits the bill? Okay, tell us why. We need a clearer explanation and definition from all these people. And I also like to know what they mean by isolationists.
Myself, I, El Rushbo, have supported our actions in Iraq and Afghanistan. I've been on the fence about Libya 'cause I don't really know, other than payback for terrorism, which we've already done, I don't know what vital US interest is there. If somebody can explain. I think it's Obama using the issue to show his toughness and guts. But if Libya is the example here that defines isolationist, let's get some definitions for it. Now, these are the people who are telling us who we need in our next nominee.
And then here's the second paragraph: "A lot of political handicappers -- particularly those on the left, who tend to view the Republican base as monolithic and somewhat medieval -- doubt that Huntsman can even win enough delegates to earn himself a decent speaking slot at the convention." I love the lingo here. "Some of the more sober-minded Republican insiders in Washington and New Hampshire, though, persuaded me --" this is Matt Bai writing this New York Times Magazine piece on Huntsman, "-- that by distancing himself from some of the party’s more populist influences..." Now, who would those be? Who would the Republican Party's most populist influences be? If he can distance himself from them, "Huntsman was giving Republican and independent voters an option that could not be so easily dismissed. This judgment has little to do with data and more to do with what Huntsman calls the vacuum in the Republican field.
"Huntsman’s bet is that some critical mass of moderate Republicans and independents -- and there are still plenty of both in New Hampshire -- can be persuaded to rally around a less ideological candidate who isn’t going to get personal or shape-shift, even if they don’t love all of his positions. If he can instigate a McCainian uprising in New Hampshire, where the lack of a competitive Democratic race this year should make for a heavier turnout among independent voters on the Republican side than in either 2004 or 2008, the fuse might then burn right through South Carolina and Florida, where Mary Kaye grew up and where Huntsman has based his campaign. … Is he just trying to get a little experience in the arena, in advance of 2016? Is he hoping for a bank shot to the vice presidency? Does he just want to be heard?"
This is paragraph three of about 15 or 20 in this early morning piece from Politico analyzing what it all means that Huntsman's getting in the race. And he's a moderate, and this is what has them all excited because that's how you get the independents and they couldn't be more wrong. And again, Republican Party snatching sure defeat from the jaws of victory by enlisting the architects of defeat in previous elections, to tell us who the voters will vote for and who they won't. That's what we need. Lessons from losers. I don't mean that personally. For crying out loud, it happened. How many Super Bowl losing coaches get hired? Immediately after losing a Super Bowl, how many of them get hired? "That's our game plan. That's what we need. We need to get that coach that lost the game. That's what our organization's missing." How often does that happen? It seems to be the Republican Party's way of doing things.
RUSH: Greenwich, Connecticut, this is Gideon. Thanks so much for waiting. Hi.
CALLER: Rush, two things. I wanted to defend RINOs and also give you a quick tea review. In regard to RINOs -- which we all know is "Republicans-in-name-only" -- at least on the state level here in Connecticut, our RINO was Governor Jodi Rell; and it turns out she was the single bulwark against this tidal wave of taxes which we now have facing us enacted because of Governor Malloy. So, at least on a state level, I think you can make the case for, in a state like Connecticut -- which, with California, were the two states that did not go along with the Tea Party, shall we say "wave." They completely resisted, went the opposite direction. At least here in Connecticut, a RINO governor was very valuable.
RUSH: Well, okay. There's no hard and fast rule that happens without exceptions, and I'm not talking specifically and exclusively of RINOs here. There are moderate Republicans who are not RINOs. The real RINO is the full-fledged, unadulterated, no-doubt-about-it, liberal Republican -- and the problem with them is that they end up destroying or corrupting or confusing the definition of what and who a Republican is, in addition to whatever mistakes they make policy-wise.
CALLER: Yeah, I get it. And plus, as you've said, it's just perhaps they take us on a slower ride down the destructive path or the failed path of socialism.
CALLER: It's a slower road, but it ends in the same place.
RUSH: And, of course, it's all based on a fallacy. What do you think the history is, where did it begin, this notion that independents won't vote for right-wingers, that independents won't vote for conservatives? Where did that start?
CALLER: I can't imagine, because obviously they voted in droves for Ronald Reagan.
CALLER: He was portrayed at extreme.
RUSH: So it had to be before that rebuke, right?
RUSH: Who was it? It was Goldwater! That's how old this is.
CALLER: Oh, yeah.
RUSH: This dates back to Goldwater in 1964, but since then (you can look this up) no real conservative has lost a national election. Here are the Republican losers: Gerald Ford, Bush 41, Bob Dole, and McCain. They're not conservative. (interruption) What did you say, Snerdley? Right. They're total moderates. They were the ones who we were told were gonna get the independents and finally get the independents vote for Republicans. The claim that independents won't vote for conservatives is something that's a holdover from the Goldwater in 1964. That's how wrong it is. That's how embedded it's been in people's minds and how it's been passed down generation after generation, but it's bohunk.
CALLER: All right, now, the tea.
RUSH: The tea!
CALLER: Two if By Tea. I ordered it, and three days later it arrived.
RUSH: That's how it should happen.
CALLER: It's a good operation -- a very, very good operation. This tastes exactly like tea you would make at home, I have to agree. I'm not a paid announcer. I bought it because I wanted to support the Marine Corps & Law Enforcement Foundation. Plus, I have to support Rush Limbaugh because if I don't do it and your listeners don't, then you get in a bad mood possibly or worse and we lose you.
CALLER: So we got jolly you along. That's the #1 responsibility.
RUSH: Well, whatever works. Heh-heh-heh.
CALLER: The tea. The tea is excellent. I actually like this, and I don't like artificial sweetener. But your artificially sweetened tea has a slightly stronger tea flavor than the regular tea.
RUSH: I'm glad you noticed that because in our testing, the testers -- there were two of them, Kathryn and me; and we told ourselves with every different formulation, "You better be able to taste the tea in this even after pouring it over ice. After it gets diluted a little bit with ice, there must be a tea flavor here, otherwise this isn't gonna work," and I'm glad you noticed that because we worked extremely hard making sure that with the raspberry, the tea flavor was going to stand up and the sweeteners were not to overpower the tea. So you're making my day here.
CALLER: I bet.
RUSH: You actually came up with something that we worked very hard on that matters greatly to this. Thanks very much.
RUSH: It is true, folks -- and I think this is even profound when you stop now and remember this -- that the Republican Party is a party that is handcuffing itself to a belief that isn't true. The Republican Party is dooming itself to defeat after defeat after defeat by tying itself to something that isn't true. Now, I do believe that a number of elite Republicans want it to be true, because I think a lot of elite Republicans don't like conservatives. We've been through the reasons why. We know that it makes 'em nervous -- "the social issues" do, particularly abortion -- but when you run a party and your job is winning elections, and you insist on getting it wrong, then there's something that needs to be looked at very seriously. I always wondered myself: Where does this coming from?
Because recent evidence is always to the contrary. We nominate these "surefire" moderate winners and they go down in flames, and they never even really have a chance -- and the cycle repeats: They are loooved by the media. I mean, the new McCain is Huntsman. Before Huntsman it was Mitch Daniels, and Mitch Daniels' wife said she didn't want any part of it so Mitch got out before he got in. Huntsman's getting in, and these people are having orgasms (whatever they're like for these people). The last time independents did not vote for a conservative in a national election was 1964. The Goldwater race! But since then no real conservative has lost a national election. Again, to go through the list of losers for you: Gerald Ford, Bush 41's reelect...
Remember Bush 41 won his first campaign promising to emulate Reagan, promising to give four more years of the previous eight years of Ronaldus Magnus. Then we had Dole and we had McCain -- and there's another factor with all these guys. It was their "turn," too. They had been loyal soldiers. They had been loyal to the cause. They had sacrificed. It was their turn to go for the gold -- and they fit the bill. "Yes, they were not embarrassing. They were serious people. They didn't want to talk about the social issues." All they did was go out and lose. The winners: Ronaldus Magnus and George W. Bush. In the Nixon campaigns, the one that he won, those were campaigns where (believe me), he was counseled to articulate conservatism. He didn't govern that way, but he ran that way. (interruption)
Law and order, yeah. Law and order was a big thing in '68. He was gonna get us out of the Vietnam war. There were a number of factors there with Nixon. Now, in the 1964 campaign, there was a lot going on during that campaign as you all know. We were coming off the assassination of John F. Kennedy. We are at the height of post-World War II prosperity. There has never been a blowout like that since for the Democrat Party. That was a genuine blowout, and it's interesting: The Republican Party is allowing itself to be shaped by the 1964 race and, alternately, by Watergate. Those two things are indelibly imprinted in the collective minds of Republican leadership. When it comes to independents voting moderate Republican, they couldn't be more wrong.
It's breathtaking to sit here and watch these guys recruit loser after loser after loser and then go out and find consultants who are the architects of loss after loss after loss -- and then to have us be told that these are the guys that know what they're doing, that you (meaning us, you and me in this audience) are what's wrong. We represent the problem. "You pro-lifers, you people that go to church, you're the problem! You embarrass us. You're not serious. Plus, some of you like Palin! That's even worse," and so the architects of defeat just keep triumphing and heading on down the pike. These RINOs... The guy from Connecticut called. The RINOs, they're not moderates. They're leftists.
This business of calling us right-wingers? Folks, the way the ideological turf has been carved up today, I don't think we're right-wingers. I think we are mainstream. I think we are in the middle of common sense. The midterm elections last November should have proved that once and for all. What were the issues? The people who voted in those elections November had a clear alternative. They knew they had two years of a far-left, near socialist administration -- and they showed up in droves to say they don't want it. They didn't want any part of it and don't want any more of it, and yet look! Even now the press, in desperation, publishes story after story that says, "You know what? The voters have changed their minds. The voters are regretting what they did in November."
Really, you can see these stories. There's no evidence for it. They're just saying it, and it works with the Republican elite, the intelligentsia. It works; makes 'em nervous. In addition to everything else, you can't put too much emphasis on the effect on that 1964 election of the JFK assassination. He was behind in the polls. The reason he went to Dallas and was on that trip was because, at that stage, he was looking at a loss -- a reelection loss -- in the polling data at the time. Now, those of you who weren't alive then hearing me say that probably can't believe that, but don't doubt me. 'Cause JFK was... Camelot had not been created. Camelot came about after the assassination. All this buildup, there was paranoia and fear that John Kennedy was bungling everything. Bay of Pigs. Bobby wasn't doing so hot with the Mafia. "Destined to lose," was one of the trip's purposes, trip to Dallas.