So, you know… I’m not going to apologize, but I didn’t mean to give the impression that Russert was going to softball the guy. Kerry is “trying to define himself.” The problem is… We were thinking here during the break, you just know this. We know it. It’s been the case for years now. The Kerry campaign has assigned some poor schlub the responsibility of listening to this program every day and reporting back to the campaign. Now can you imagine (laughing) this poor guy listening to the first hour of this program (laughing) and having to report back to the campaign what was about Kerry? Do you think this guy can go back and say, “It was the funniest hour I ever heard. I mean, I was laughing myself…” No, he can’t do that. He’s got to go back, “They’re scared of you, senator. They are scared. (laughing) You’ve got Limbaugh on the run.”
It has to be totally sycophant stuff. They probably subscribe to my website and I don’t know it, probably subscribe under some phony name and they listen to it on the web wherever they go. (Laughing, clapping.) At any rate, listen to this [Washington Post] editorial here [Kerry sing-song voice]: “‘We need A reasonable plan and a specific timetable for self-government’ in Iraq, Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) said in December. ‘That means completing the tasks of security and democracy in the country — not cutting and running in order to claim a false success.’ On another occasion, he said: ‘It would be a disaster and a disgraceful betrayal of principle to speed up the process simply to lay the groundwork for a politically expedient withdrawal of American troops.’
“Contrast that with what Mr. Kerry told reporters last week: [Kerry sing-song voice:] ‘With respect to getting our troops out, the measure is the stability of Iraq. (Democracy) shouldn’t be the measure of when you leave. I have always said from day one…” before day one, because I was hre before there was a day one, “..that the goal here… is a stable Iraq, not whether or not that’s a full democracy.’ Mr. Kerry contends that he has not shifted his public position. But there are major differences between what he said in December — right after Saddam Hussein’s capture, when Mr. Kerry was seeking to discredit dovish Democratic challenger Howard Dean — and his remarks last week, which followed several weeks of bad news from Iraq and growing public disenchantment with the course of the war. Where once he named democracy as a task to be completed, and the alternative to ‘cutting and running’ or a ‘false success,’ Mr. Kerry now says democracy is optional.
“Where once he warned against setting the conditions for an early but irresponsible withdrawal of U.S. forces, now he does so himself by defining the exit standard as ‘stability,’ a term that could describe Saudi Arabia or Iran — or the Iraq of Saddam Hussein. In December Mr. Kerry’s Iraq policy differed with that of President Bush not in its goals but in its tactics. Mr. Kerry rightly insisted, and still does, that the United States cannot succeed without greater international collaboration and reliance on the United Nations. Now he differs with Mr. Bush on the crucial issue of what the United States must achieve in Iraq before it can safely end its mission. ‘Iraq,’ Mr. Bush said at his news conference last week, ‘will either be a peaceful democratic country or it will again be a source of violence, a haven for terrorists, and a threat to America and to the world.’ Mr. Kerry now argues that there is a third option. But what would that be? [Kerry sing-song voice:] ‘I can’t tell you what it’s going to be,’ he said to reporters covering his campaign. ‘That stability can take several forms.'”
[Summarizing in Kerry voice:] “Don’t pin me down on what my other option is. I have no idea.” So The Post concludes by saying, “We believe a successful political outcome is still possible; others disagree. But Mr. Kerry’s shift on such a basic question after just a few months is troubling and mistaken.” They’re trying to help; the Post is trying to help. I mean, this could have been written in a really brutal way, but it wasn’t because they’re still trying to save the guy.
Now he’s out there as I said, “As he prepares for the most ambitious and defining phase of his presidential candidacy, John Kerry is relying on image makers schooled in traditional Kennedy liberalism to sell himself anew to voters as a 21st Century centrist Democrat, a muscular hawk on national defense and deficits.”
How can any Kennedy person do that? There’s no Kennedy person that’s a hawk, not since JFK. Just gets more and more befuddling. And Kerry has actually shifted to “the environment.” What he’s tried in Iraq hasn’t worked. What he’s tried on war on terror hasn’t worked. Now he’s going to the environment? Can you imagine the hosts and the producers of the usual suspects on these nightly cable shows, and they’re saying, “He’s talking about what? We’ve got to do an hour on the environment? We’ve got to go back to that? Nobody cares about the environment!” This is a classic example of somebody who has been defined and is trying to undo what everybody knows about him. That’s what this is really about, because everybody does know. They know who he is. They know what he’s not. He’s not great; he doesn’t have a lot of stature. He doesn’t have a lot of energy or passion, and there’s nothing they can apparently do about it.
RUSH: Elkhorn, Wisconsin. Paul, glad you waited, and welcome to the EIB Network.
CALLER: Thank you, Rush. Pleasure to speak to you.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: My question is, you’ve kind of been having fun talking about the difficulty the strategists for Kerry are having in trying to recreate him and everything, but what I would ask you is — it might be kind of a far stretch for you, but if you were a Democratic strategist for Kerry, how would you defeat a popular wartime president? How would you run a campaign against a president like him in a growing economy? The president has cut the legs out of Democrats as far as social issues and everything. How would you do it?
RUSH: Well, that’s a pretty involved question, and I don’t know that I want to go into great detail about how I would defeat Bush.
CALLER: Probably don’t want to give any secrets away or anything. (laughs)
RUSH: Well, no, but I do have an answer. I’m not hedging, but the first thing: the problem here is the candidate, right?
Throw the issues out. The issues don’t matter, yet. I mean, the problem with Kerry is the issues don’t matter. He’s getting no traction on anything. The problem is the candidate. The first thing I would do is I would get hold of whoever really runs this party and say, “Is it too late to do something about this? Because we haven’t actually nominated this guy. Because it is looking bleak. This guy has demonstrated over the course of the entire campaign. We don’t know how he ended up you winning these primaries in the first place but he doesn’t excite anybody; he doesn’t turn anybody on and he doesn’t have it in him to do it.”
Now, we could explore the reasons why. I mean, you could bring Kerry… The problem with telling Kerry this, is he doesn’t see himself this way. John Kerry is sitting way up there in the clouds and looking down at everybody. He’s got this condescension arrogance about him, and I don’t think there are probably any aides that can actually approach him this way. Now, I’ve read stories that there are people in his campaign concerned about lack of energy and they’re showing him tapes of the way he campaigned in previous campaigns when he was running for the Senate in Massachusetts, but I can imagine how those sessions are going.
[Kerry sing-song voice:] “Yoooou doooon’t understand the difference betweeeeen running for the Senate in a little state like that and seeking the big house in this country. I knoooow what I’m doing, and you don’t, and I’m paying yoooou, and you’re not paying me. I can fire you, and if you don’t tell me what I want to hear, you’re gone. Understand? I was in Vietnam! You better fear me.” He’s got an attitudinal adjustment problem, here. I’d sit him down and say, “John, do you really want this? Do you really want to be president?” [Kerry sing-song voice:] “Why are yoooou asking meeee…?”
“Because I can’t tell by the way you are. You go on vacation all the time. We had a chance here to really, really, really put Bush away: the 9/11 commission. Everything was going in our favor, Clarke, we couldn’t have asked for more. Where were you? Nobody knew where to find you! Your cell phone wasn’t on. None of your aides could be found. You were out skiing and you’re berating the Secret Service agent and you’re calling him a son of a b—- because he supposedly tripped you. Where were you? John, this is when you needed to be out there and scoring points and hammering nails and you weren’t anywhere to be found. Do you want to do this? Because if you don’t want to do it, now is the time to say so. If you do want to do it, then let us see the evidence.”
Because, folks, I’m going to tell you something. Throw the issues aside, not that they don’t matter because they do and I believe that more than anything, but he’s got bigger problems than that. It’s something real simple, and you’ve heard me say this over the course of the many, many years that you have been eager beaver listeners listens to this program: there is no substitute for passion as a magnet. People who are passionate about what they want, get it. People who are passionate about what they believe are able to persuade people of it. People who are passionate about their interests are infectious and inspiring, motivating and invigorating people — and he has no passion.
He doesn’t even have answers to questions. Well, what’s your third plan for Iraq? [Kerry sing-song voice:] “Weeeell, I don’t have that plan yet.” I mean, of all things to say! Make something up! To say you don’t have the plan, yet you think there should be one? I don’t run people’s campaigns, and I’ve never done it; I don’t want to do it. It’s obviously more involved than anything I know. But from the side of it that we see — and that is Kerry in public — I mean, I couldn’t believe he was up in Maine or New Hampshire the other day. No, it was Harlem. Of all places, for an empty arena!
The Democrat presidential nominee is at the City University in Harlem, in New York, and this is where this socialist/communist professor stood up and read him the riot act and said, [Flawless Walter Daum impression:] “People hate Bush and they will hate you, if you don’t understand that you represent an imperialist, murdering nation.” The video of that showed nobody in the audience behind (Kerry). When the camera up and down away, nobody was in the gymnasium or auditorium wherever it took place. There is no evidence of any excitement in this campaign, and, you know, a lot of people think that you can fake things on campaigns. You can plant questions in the audience and debates, and you can do certain things. You cannot fake mass support and passion for an individual. You cannot take a rock star that nobody likes, put him in Madison Square Garden, and have the place go nuts and make it an act — unless you’re filming a movie and you’re rehearsing. And this kind of thing, you can’t do it, and there’s just no passion there.
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