McConnell's Plan Shows Weakness
July 13, 2011
RUSH: Well, we knew it was gonna get to this point. The Republicans are nervous, some of them are very nervous, and a few of them are outright paranoid.
Hi, folks, great to have you back, Rush Limbaugh, already the middle of the week here on the Excellence in Broadcasting Network. Our telephone number is 800-282-2882. You want to send an e-mail, the address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com
About this time yesterday we quoted Senator Mitch McConnell as saying nothing substantive will ever get done in this country until Barack Obama is removed from the Oval Office. As long as Obama's in the Oval Office nothing is gonna get done. All right, fine. And I said I don't know how you walk that back. But he did. I sat here and I mean we were ladling praise out. We're just not used to hearing Republicans talk that way. Now, Trump, you know, say what you want about Trump, Trump showed the way here. Trump showed how you rattle Obama. Trump showed how you get under the thin skin of Obama and how you get him off his game. Trump showed that. You just go right after him. You just get rid of all your fear. You get rid of whoever you're gonna offend or what the press is gonna say about you and you just tell people the truth. And Obama can't deal with that. He's never had to deal with that his whole life. He's led a very sheltered, protected, you know, whenever he got a C, always somebody around to make it an A, maybe an A-.
But you go out and make that really powerful statement, which has the added benefit of being true. We're not gonna get anything seriously accomplished as long as he's in the Oval Office, as long as he's president. Gotta be defeated. And then a few hours later after not telling anybody, you submit a plan without running it by your colleagues, and everybody is asking of me what I think of this. The number one problem I have with it has nothing to do with its substance. There's some problems I had, but it shows weakness. My gosh, we've got Obama and the Democrats predictably following every page in their playbook, knowing exactly what they're gonna do before they do it, scaring senior citizens, and the minute they come out with that, here's this proposal that basically shows panic. To me it reeked of a lack of resolve. I think Obama needed to think that these Republicans were serious about taking this to the end and now he knows that they're not. Now he knows the Republicans are not united on that concept. Now he knows that there are Republicans who'd like to do anything to avoid being blamed for this.
Look, the plan's got its positive aspects. If you want we can go through it. It's got its positive aspects. But I just don't see the need for it right now. I was shocked when this thing hit. It's got a lot of procedural rigmarole in it, but it seems to be calculated in a way -- and this is my main problem with it -- to escape responsibility. It seems like the objective here was to come up with a way that would allow the Republicans to blame Obama for once, which is a waste of time. As long as the Democrats control the media like they do, Obama is never going to be portrayed as the problem in a back-and-forth with the Republicans, I don't care what happens. The people that the Republicans care about, apparently, the media and the ruling class in Washington is never, ever going to end up blaming Obama for this, particularly the media as long as they control the press like they do. They're always gonna portray the Republicans as obstructionist and extremists no matter what they do or don't do.
You know, this is pedal to the metal time. It's time we swallowed the pill and take our medicine. Why come up with a plan that allows Obama to raise the debt ceiling three more times before he leaves office? I know it puts the onus on him and so forth, "Oh, yeah, Obama raised the debt ceiling." Why cede that kind of power just to try to illustrate to everybody that he's the big spender. Look at the public polling data. Everybody knows that Obama's the problem on this. He doesn't have majority support on anything he's doing right now and everybody knows that the media's gonna try to blame the Republicans, everybody knows this was coming down the pike. Everybody knew that the same old same old was gonna happen, meaning Republicans hate senior citizens and want them to die, and the military, Republicans really don't care, all they care about is their corporate jet guys. Come on. You know it's gonna happen, and to react this way to it out of nowhere, I don't know, depressed me.
Now, I don't want to sit around and be depressed about this stuff. But it did. Here's what it is. I mean if you want me to summarize the McConnell plan, it's kind of a backdoor way of giving Obama just about everything he wants without the Republicans having to take the blame for it. Obama in this deal gets two and a half trillion dollars more borrowed money in exchange for future spending cuts that will be chosen by the Democrat Senate. When I saw that Harry Reid consulted on this and liked it, and when I saw that Chuck Schumer liked it, when I saw that Durbin liked it, when I saw that Pelosi liked it, I said, whoa. Now, the plan does allow the Republicans to go on record as voting for their own cuts. It does do that. And it allows the Republicans to escape blame if those cuts never happen. It does throw all the onus on Obama. But who's gonna care, who's gonna remember in the future anyway? The same circumstances are gonna happen, the first of these three debt limit increases, you'd think the media and the Democrats are gonna all say, "You know what, McConnell snookered us back there in 2011. I guess we're really pounded now. Everything we do is gonna be blamed on us." The blame game and trying to escape it is not the point. Stopping spending is the point. Stopping Obama from doing any more damage is the point, not constructing things so the party doesn't get blamed.
I understand these are party people and they gotta go get elected. I just think I've got a pretty good recipe for pulling that off. I just do not believe that showing signs of weakness like this advances the ball. Now, I could be dead wrong about this, and I know Senator McConnell, he's an honorable person, and I know he's doing what he thinks best. I think he's really trying to see to it, he's dead serious about what he said yesterday, Obama being an obstacle to anything positive getting accomplished in this country. He's dead serious when he says that the objective has to be to defeat Obama at the ballot box in 2012. I think he's dead serious on trying to protect the Republican Party here and make sure that they don't get the blame for this, even as Obama gets what he wants. But I don't know why present this yesterday. I don't understand how it's not possible to look at this circumstance and see that Obama -- I guess it's easy for me to say forget the media. These guys can't, I guess, and I guess maybe they have their own polling that they listen to.
I don't care about any of that. It's very hard for me to say all of this 'cause I really admire Senator McConnell. There are good things in the plan. It doesn't contain any mention of new taxes. But it doesn't stop Obama and the Democrats from trying to raise them, either. And McConnell's plan would mean that Obama finally has to put some spending cuts down on paper. They leaked yesterday, the White House leaked Eric Cantor's Medicare cuts that he's proposing, that they're talking about in these meetings. And, of course, Obama can safely do that because there's nothing of his to leak, because he hasn't put anything down on paper. Obama's not mentioning anything specific. The White House press secretary is running around saying, "Obama doesn't even have a vote."
We know who we're up against. We know exactly who we're up against. We know exactly the kind of people they are, and we know that the last thing they have on their side is the truth. We know that we have the truth on our side. As I say, one of the positive things is Obama would have to put some spending cuts down on paper. No matter how phony they are, he would have to get specific. Look, another thing, it has no chance of passing the House, so I don't understand why bring it up. Yes, I do. I do understand why bring it up. This is the heat, giving such that it's time to save the Republicans here and the blame game. And that's, I think, one of the objectives here.
RUSH: Paul in Carlsbad, California. What a beautiful place. I have been there. Hello, sir.
CALLER: It's gorgeous. But my point... I don't know if I'm gonna bail you out because I think the elected Republicans don't want to cut government. I don't see any signs of it. Listen, if you increase the debt, you're expanding government. The only way to cut it is to not increase the debt.
CALLER: And quite honestly... You know, Milton Friedman told us, "The true tax on the American people is the amount of money the government spends."
RUSH: I hear you. I know exact what you mean. That's why I've been pounding: Why is there a debt limit in the first place if every 12 or 13, 15 months we're just gonna go through this rigmarole to get past it? What does it matter? Why even have one? The reason we have one is so the Democrats get to play this game every year and a half. The reason we have a debt limit -- I'll tell you, the real reason that it's there now -- is precisely so that this scenario can play out every year and a half. "Republicans hate old people! Republicans will defund the military! Republicans will let old people starve! Republicans will take their houses away from 'em! Republicans will take their health care away!"
Just so we can go through this every year and a half, is why the debt limit exists. Because Paul here is right: It is time to swallow the bill, the bitter pill, to take our medicine, to have "peas in our time," whatever. This is the time to start talking about reducing spending, to stay underneath the debt limit. (big sigh) But I do gather there's not a whole lot of support for that, even on the Republican side. The Republican freshmen, yeah -- and the Republican Conservative Caucus, about a hundred of them in the House, yeah -- they're all for it. But for the most part what they're focusing here on are "serious" spending cuts as we raise the debt limit. They think we gotta raise the debt limit so we're not embarrassed around the world, credit agency-wise and all that rigmarole.