RUSH: CNN today, American Morning, the co-host Soledad O’Brien interviewed the estimable Chuck Hagel, Republican senator from Nebraska, and she’s talking to him about this — and Hagel gets roughed up here by the Drive-By Media — resolution that the Senate is going to pass that opposes the surge in troops in Iraq. Her question to Hagel: “The resolution actually has no effect on the president’s plan to send these troops into Iraq.”
HAGEL: Well, first of all, this is a process. This resolution that we presented is a process that will engage the Congress and the nation in a national debate over Iraq.
O’BRIEN: But on that point —
HAGEL: Let me finish. Let me finish. Let me finish, please.
RUSH: (imitating Hagel’s pompous tone) “Let me finish. Let me finish.” Yeah!
HAGEL: You asked me a question; I’ll answer it. This is a beginning of a process. No one is suggesting, Soledad, in this resolution — I never have; I don’t think any of my colleagues up here have — to cut-and-run, to leave Iraq in the mess that it’s in. We’re not talking about that. We’re talking about better ways to do it.
RUSH: (sigh) You know, this is so gutless. Then tell us what the “better ways to do it” are, and tell us how this resolution that you’re joining is not undermining the effort to win this! You get to hide behind a resolution that you say is just “process” and it’s just an opportunity to “start the debate.” Start the debate! Somebody needs to end the debate and we all need to come together and decide what we need to do is win this thing! Start the debate? For crying out loud! “We’re not talking about that. We’re talking about better ways to do it.” But O’Brien is having none of this “process” talk. Listen to this exchange.
O’BREIN: But you raise the point of the number of, uh, dead US service people, which is now at 3,027, and you say it’s the start of a process, and there are plenty of people who would say, “Well, that’s great about a process, but, sir, I can almost guarantee you, by tomorrow, that number, 3,027 dead is going to up two or three or four or five soldiers.” So some of the people would say, “While Congress is debating the process, people are dying.” Why not do something a little more tangible?
HAGEL: Well, eh, let’s look at the facts. Already in process right now — and this is a process business. You may not like it. It may not be fast enough for you or some people, but that’s the reality of it.
RUSH: Well, we didn’t get the facts. “Well, let’s look at the facts. Already a process…” He stopped to defend “process.” See, this is the difference in being president and being some senator. Senators have aaaaaall the good fortune and time and luxury to run around and get involved in process. Yip yip yip yahoo! Process is for intellectuals! Process is for a bunch of people who aren’t accustomed to getting things done. Process is for people who want to tell everybody how smart they are, but never have to face accountability because they never implement anything! Process shmocess! Can you imagine if this program were a process? I’d never end up telling you what I think. I’d be debating with you what I think and sharing my angst with you, but when it came time to take a position I’d be afraid to because of the accountability that would result. Now, I’m going to tell you something else about this. Let me go back to the ’06 elections.
Elizabeth Dole ran the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee, and as you may know, that job that she had is designed to make sure that as many Republicans as possible get elected, reelected to the Senate; to go out there and find good Senate candidates to run in open seats and so forth, and she was raked over the coals over the defeat last year, the loss of these many seats, and it was said that she was a rotten fund-raiser, that she just wasn’t any good, that the e-mails and the fund-raising appeals she sent out were horrible. Let me tell you the truth about it. One of the things that she was doing and that the administration was doing — and it was very public — they were pedal-to-the metal trying to reelect Lincoln Chafee. Well, I’m going to sit here and tell you right now: the people who are going to contribute to the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee didn’t want Lincoln Chafee reelected and resented the fact that a whole bunch of powerful Republicans are going out of their way to elect somebody who was essentially turncoat and joined the Democrats on every crucial issue, and if there was a reason the fund-raising was down, that’s a big part of it.
Now, add to the list of senators that are going to provide same problem in ’08, Senator Hagel. I believe he’s up in ’08, and the more he keeps up with this, the greater the impact on negative fund-raising for the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee. I think John Ensign is running it this year, the senator from Nevada, former member of the House. He’s truly good guy, but he’s got his work cut out for him, and if there are any other Republicans that are joining this meaningless “process” to start this “debate” that he need to have over Iraq — what a chuckler that is! If there are any others besides Hagel that are joining this, they are also going to combating negatively the fund-raising efforts among the base, because I can tell you right now: the base is not going to respond favorably to fund-raising appeals to reelect people like Chuck Hagel, just like they didn’t respond favorably to reelect people like Lincoln Chafee. I couldn’t blame you! There are consequences to this stuff that the practitioners don’t seem to understand.