RUSH: This disappoints me. It confuses me a little bit. The first lady, Laura Bush — for whom I have nothing but greatest admiration — has joined in the… I guess she was asked by Matt Lauer if sexism might be playing a role in the Miers controversy. She said, “It’s possible. I think that’s possible. I think people are not looking it her accomplishments here.” We’ve got the sound bite. Let’s go to audio sound bite #4. This was the Today Show today from Covington, Louisiana and Matt Lauer says, “Some are suggesting there’s a little possible sexism in the criticism of Harriet Miers. How would you feel about that?”
THE FIRST LADY: I think that’s possible. I think she is so accomplished, and, you know, I think people are not looking at her accomplishments and not realizing that she was the first elected woman to be the head of the Texas Bar Association, for instance, and all the other things. She was the first woman, managing partner of a major law firm. She was the first woman hired by a major law firm, her law firm.
RUSH: We’ve heard that, I know, but the idea that there is some sort of sexism here? This is hard for me. It is really, really hard for me. The more I hear from the defenders of Ms. Miers — and again, I’ve got no brief against her, but the more I hear the people whose job it is to defend her, the more I hear them sounding like the left, that there’s sexism here, that that’s elitism going on. Let me take a stab at this again. Let me go back to one of the things that got this whole ball rolling, and that is this whole notion of Roe vs. Wade and we need to overturn Roe vs. Wade, and I think that there has developed here a considerable sense of confusion and lack of understanding about most of the people on the right about Roe vs. Wade. There two camps in the Roe vs. Wade camp, I guess, on the right. The left is a unified voice on this. They care about the vote. There are some on the right that care only about overturning Roe vs. Wade, but I have spoken at length on this program about the fact that the Constitution is a science, that the Supreme Court is a culture, and that the culture of the Supreme Court is just way out of whack. So while some people may think that the primary objective here on the part of conservatives and people like me, is to get enough votes on the court to overturn Roe vs. Wade, that’s not going to stop abortion. That’s really not what this is about. Roe vs. Wade is bad law. What happened was that a Supreme Court could not find the word “abortion” in the Constitution and yet found it, and they created a right to privacy and a number of other rights.
I mean, Harry Blackmun talked about the “penumbra of the Constitution.” Well, spare me! We don’t care about the “penumbra” of the Constitution. We care about the Constitution, and if you’re going to have a Supreme Court — and, folks, if you’ve listened to me regularly for a long period of time you understand that this is a consistent point of view that I’ve held, and it is this. The court is out of control. The court is made up now of nine people, some of whom are simply substituting their own personal policy preferences or foreign law or whatever to find in legal cases that come before them. Now, these cases involve the Constitution. If you’re going to have members of the Supreme Court look at the document and find something in it that isn’t there, then the Constitution is meaningless! If you can find something that’s not there, and if you can ignore something that is, and get away with it because you are in the majority of the Supreme Court then the Constitution is meaningless. This whole thing is about reorienting the court for constitutionalism. Another word for that is originalism. You go back and you check the originalists, the Founders. It’s there, and if the Constitution doesn’t provide for it, you don’t make it up. You amend it, and there is an amendment process. The Founders left us quite a path — constitutionally defined, I might add — to change the Constitution. It’s how we deal with things that it doesn’t specifically address, and some things that it doesn’t specifically address, that’s it, and it’s up to other people to decide, such as the states.
Roe vs. Wade, if it’s ever overturned, is simply going to go back to the states. It’s going to be decided on by the people of this country and it’s going to be legal in some of these states. You know that. Overturning Roe vs. Wade is not going to overturn abortion. It’s not going to make it illegal throughout this country, and so a vote just to overturn Roe vs. Wade is meaningless unless there’s some foundation behind that vote that believes it’s bad law, not just that it was a bad result — and to sit here and get caught up in all this, “Well, this is a sexist view, and these are elitists, and these people don’t understand,” it so misses the point. It just saddens me as I listen to the people whose job it is to defend Harriet Miers in this nomination, run around. Like Rich Lowry makes the point today that something’s wrong when Ed Gillespie, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, basically has the same talking points that Barbara Mikulski does. Now, something’s wrong there. Barbara Mikulski is sitting there saying we’re a bunch of sexists and we’re anti-women and so forth, and to have the former chairman of the RNC out saying similar things to us about those who oppose the Miers nomination is (sigh). Well, as I say, it’s dumfounding, and I can’t — I refuse — to believe that they really mean it. No, I don’t think they think we’re sexist. I don’t think Laura Bush thinks that, either. I think it’s just what else have they got to say? She was this and that; she was accomplished. I’m not denying any of that.
All I’m saying is that there are people, and women — and, by the way, this sexist business, I don’t know that Janice Rogers Brown or Priscilla Owen or Edith Jones would consider me a sexist or any of the other people who have supported them in their quests to sit on the appellate bench and then on up to the Supreme Court. That’s why this sexist business doesn’t wash. (interruption) Well, who is she talking about? Okay, Mr. Snerdley says I’m not who she is talking about. Who’s she talking about? Mmm-hmm. Uh-huh. Well, all right. Okay, Snerdley says that Laura Bush is not talking about me; she’s talking about those out there criticizing Harriet Miers on the basis that she has no qualifications. Hey, Brian, open those up. I’m like a kid on Christmas morning with those things. I haven’t had a new set of those things in six years. This is a bunch of sex toys, folks. My mistress in Arizona sent that in. Make sure it’s from Arizona before you open it. If they’re out there saying of the critics that are not me, are unappreciative of her qualifications, I think they’re misunderstanding. Most of the people I know who are having a problem with this nomination have a problem with it on the basis that I just mentioned: the Constitution, the court, originalism, not a single case, not a single vote, because that single vote is not going to change it. It’s fine if you’re against Roe vs. Wade because you’re against abortion. That’s very moral of you and I love you and I’m proud of you, but you’ve also got to understand that it is horrible law.
It set the precedent. Well, it didn’t set the precedent, but I mean it established a huge, huge precedent to allow the rulings of the court ever since then, since 1973, to go outside the Constitution. Once it was praised as great law, once it was praised as progressive; we had all kinds of trouble because it’s bad law. It would be no different than if the court decided to just cancel the Second Amendment because some justices didn’t like it. What would you think of that? And, by the way, that’s not far out of the realm of possibility, because liberals read the Constitution differently than you and I do. They read it and they see things that aren’t in there, and then they read it and they see the things that are in there that they can’t believe are in there and if they can write them out of there with a Supreme Court decision, they would. So if you’ve got enough of them on there that want to get rid of the Second Amendment on the basis, “The Founders never intended! It’s up to us to interpret modern times,” well, it’s no different than that. It’s the same type of reasoning as what gave us Roe vs. Wade. Well, that kind of reasoning stinks, and that’s kind of reasoning is going to end up destroying the very fabric that holds us together, constitutionally and legally, and that’s the beef here. (sigh) Oh, boy.
RUSH: You know, there’s also some people out there, folks, on the conservative side, who are beginning to level these allegations that the conservative movement is a lockstep movement and if you’re off the beaten path, then you’re going to get savaged, and I can’t believe that after the four years that we’ve just had, five years of proving this. We’re a movement. We’re not a political party. The conservative movement is not a political party. It’s made up of all kinds of people with all kinds of different views, but there’s a core in there. There’s a foundation in there that makes somebody conservative or not, but this is the place where ideas are openly debated. The left is where you have lockstep demands. The left is where you don’t have any “mavericks” as it were. Conservatives are where all the mavericks are, and this idea now that there’s some ideological test that somebody has to pass in order to be a conservative. I mean, this is the kind of stuff that I’ve been hearing the left say, “Litmus tests,” and all this sort of thing, all these years, and now we got some people on the right wing starting to use this kind of language. Nobody demands acceptance in toto in the conservative movement. (sigh) I’m befuddled. I’m amazed here at this. The conservative movement, if you want to talk about marching lockstep, it has marched lockstep behind the president until this moment. The conservative movement’s been right there — and some of you people during the course of these five years, some of you people who have called here and angry with me over Miers how many of you wanted to sell Bush out in 2002? How many of you wanted to sell him out in 2003 because immigration or spending or whatever? I mean, this is common.
There are always debates within the conservative movement. It’s where ideas do get debated. The idea that there’s some lockstep requirement now and that Harriet Miers doesn’t meet the demands is silly. It isn’t what this is about. We’re not out there, you know, “Gotta get a real conservative.” If somebody is saying we need a real conservative what they really mean is, “We need somebody that’s going to be able to be on the court that’s going to have to understand the Constitution and how it is being bastardized by the current culture of the Supreme Court.” I think this debate that’s going on, on the right actually shows the maturity of the conservative movement and the principled approach to this issue that is being taken. I mean, the idea that there are elitists, purists, or that we are elitists or purists or whatever because we question the wisdom of this one thing the president’s done — and the criticism, by the way, falls down on several legitimate and thoughtful levels. I mean, to think that there is elitism going on or litmus testing being required is foolish. The other side uses old, worn liberal arguments to attack us like sexism and glass ceiling and “trust me,” all that, and now to have the right wing start using this kind of lingo, whew! It’s puzzling to me, folks. Now, I know some of these people on the right, they’re trying to carve out… They’re new players out there and they’re trying to carve out a niche for themselves as the smartest people in the room and all that, but I tell you, I think some of the critics of this nomination have been far more intellectually honest and principled than some of the defenders have been, if you want to know the truth.
You know, folks, I’ve tried. I’ve really worked on this. I’ve got friends of mine saying, “I can’t believe you’re doing this! I can’t believe you’re not behind the president.” I am totally behind the president, folks, but I disagree with this nomination. I’ve tried to put myself in the shoes of those who were defending it, and I can’t come here and tell you — I’m sorry, I couldn’t come here honestly and say — “You know those people against Harriet Miers are a bunch of sexists,” because I know they’re not, and, “You know these people against Harriet Miers? They just want a glass ceiling; they’re just a bunch of anti-women types.” I cannot hear myself saying these words about people I know who are opposed to this. To me these are all phony arguments. Like when they come from the left they’re just as phony. The left is clich?: racist, sexist, bigot, homophobe. Those are the clich? arguments, and to have those now advanced by some of our people is silly, especially when there are plenty of highly qualified women that Bush could have chosen from and would have been profoundly supported in doing so. So I’ve worked this any number of ways. When people have been critical of me, I’ve said, “Okay, let me see if I can say to you what you’re saying to me and see if I can believe myself,” and I can’t. After railing against these labels and these clich?s for so long, I just can’t imagine myself uttering them again — and, you know what, folks? I’ll bet you that if I came on this program and sounded like some of the people paid to defend Harriet Miers you would excuse me of selling out, simply because of the words I’d be using. Because you know those are not words that I use and that’s not even the way I think: racist, sexist, bigot. Those are all labels designed to discredit people with whom you don’t have the guts to debate. So you come up with these labels to just discredit them so you don’t have to take them on so you don’t even get to the problem of dealing with their ideas.
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