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RUSH: All right. We still have Lou Ann here from Salt Lake City who held on through the break because she only had 20 seconds when I inadvertently took her call. So, Lou Ann, welcome back. Thank you for waiting, and welcome to the EIB Network.

CALLER: Thank you very much for taking my call.

RUSH: You bet.

CALLER: I have that Dingy Harry letter on my refrigerator and I enjoy looking at it every day. I just wanted to say that I do find this election important.

RUSH: Yes?

CALLER: And I do find your opinions very important.

RUSH: Thank you.

CALLER: And I do think that everybody is getting endorsements from this person or that person, and we just recently heard of Lieberman endorsing John McCain and kind of giving him a little boost. So we don’t really hear in the media much about Fred Thompson, and I do think, like you, that he is a good conservative — and like you pointed out so eloquently, other people, such as Romney or Giuliani or so forth, are kind of redefining what conservatism is, and that’s kind of like what it is now. I do think Fred Thompson does carry forth some of the traditional conservative ideas, and I think maybe if perhaps you came out and said you are for him, maybe he would get a little bit more noticed and people would consider him as more of a viable, top-tier, one or two candidate, because I really do think that he is really good. I’ve heard him on other radio shows, and I do like his ideas, and I really think that Giuliani would make a fabulous vice president with him, because I think that would take away some of his personal issues. And I think that Vice President Cheney has redefined what a vice president is. I don’t think they are just somebody who goes around at funerals and stuff.

RUSH: I agree with you. I’ve long stated in fact that what bothers me greatly here is this redefinition of conservatism that’s going on, but having said that: Whichever one of these guys gets the nomination is going to get my vote, and it could well be… You know, everybody’s talking about Iowa and New Hampshire, but this isn’t going to be over after either of those states on either side. Rudy’s in Missouri, frankly. ‘Missouri? What’s going on in Missouri?’ Well, I’ll tell you what’s going on in Missouri: February 5th. February 5th is Super-Duper Tuesday, whatever they’re calling it. That’s where you’re probably going to get the nominees picked. With the Republican side right now so fluid (this is something else I told Cindy Adams last night), right now in Republican National Committee circles and maybe even with some Republicans, the two dreaded words out there are ‘brokered convention,’ and the reason some people are fearing brokered convention — it would be fun to watch — is because nobody’s launched ahead of anybody here. It’s just that tight, at least coordinating these preprimary polls. But there will be some clarity after the Hawkeye Cauci, and after the New Hampshire primary.

Now, interestingly about endorsements, Zogby conducted a poll recently for Associated Television News shows, and it discovered this: ‘that voters value the endorsements of the National Rifle Association, by former President Clinton and President George W. Bush over influential organizations like the AFL-CIO and the National Council of La Raza or celebrities Oprah Winfrey and Barbra Streisand.’ Now (sigh), I’m not surprised. There’s even a story here in the stack about this. The Oprah endorsement ‘didn’t really sway voters.’ This is from the Chicago Sun-Times, Jennifer Hunter: ‘Oprah’s efforts actually backfired,’ a poll says. This is the Lifetime Network and Zogby again. ‘The pollsters interviewed 500 New Hampshire women — to look at the views in this early primary state — and 1,000 other women across the nation… [W]hat the pollsters found was that Oprah made little difference in the way women are looking at the candidates. In fact, with some groups of women, Oprah’s efforts actually backfired. … [O]ne-third of the women under 30 said Oprah ‘stumping actually made them less likely to support Obama.’ Seventy-three percent of the other women said it made no difference to their campaign choices at all.’ I don’t buy this Clinton, though, as a powerful endorsement. This guy is a drag. This guy is an absolute drag on whoever it is he goes out there to help. So sit tight, folks. It’s all going to come into clear focus at the appropriate time. Things happen as and when they are supposed to.


RUSH: All right, Phil in Spartanburg, South Carolina, it’s nice to have you on the EIB Network. Hello.

CALLER: Rush, mega dittos.

RUSH: Thank you, sir.

CALLER: Just want to ask you about the Huckabee craze. I mean, it’s obviously made it down here, and it’s still down here in South Carolina, but it’s been so big it’s changed me. I was a Romney guy for a while, and now I’ve been influenced so much — I’m only 18 years old, so I’m easily influenced, but — I’m almost over to Huckabee now, but I guess my question is, is this going to make it far enough out in the country? Is this going to spread from the Southeast up North, you know, to the Midwest and stay in Iowa and come to Florida and make it in Ohio? I know when Thompson got in the race later, you know, everybody said, ‘Here comes Thompson! Here comes Thompson,’ and now kind of with McCain. McCain’s making a big run. So is Huckabee going to be able to carry this far enough to where he can really win this nomination?

RUSH: Look, as fluid as things are, it is possible. Anything right now is possible, because you haven’t had any votes. A lot of things are going to become much more clear after the Hawkeye Cauci and then the New Hampshire primary. Nothing’s going to be settled then. You know, South Carolina is going to be crucial to a lot of candidates. South Carolina will probably depend on whether some stay in or not. Maybe not, but a lot of people have South Carolina in their long-term strategery. Thompson was one. He’s now reallocating some resources to Iowa because he’s in the middle of a little bit of s surge there. But if you want to make analogies, Howard Dean, in 2004, was the darling of the Democrats. He was supposedly attracting never before active audience, and voters, and contributors via the Internet. And the haughty John Kerry was languishing away, having to borrow money from his wife under the guise of taking away equity in his Boston house, in order to stay viable in the campaign, and then when the votes were counted in Iowa, the polling data had been dead wrong about Howard Dean, and it didn’t materialize, and that’s when he started screaming. That’s why I keep telling people to wait for the actual votes to start counting, be counted, and votes to be taken. At this stage, I wont to be able to tell you who’s going to win this.

I don’t know how long Huckabee is going to survive. I don’t know how far he can go. I think, as happens with all surprise emerging near front-runners, that more and more scrutiny is attached. And, as that scrutiny occurs, the candidates either try to face it or hide it, continue, you know, to not answer questions about various aspects of policy and instead rely on the link and try to promote that link, which, in Huckabee’s case is his Southern Baptistism and his being a minister, to have that be what propels him. But I’ve found that you can’t avoid this kind of scrutiny. It happens to everybody that climbs to the top of anything: Everybody comes gunning for you. I don’t care what the business is, be it politics or anything else. Everybody wants what you’ve got when you’re number one. So I think it’s going to be difficult, frankly, for Huckabee to hold on, but I don’t know. I really don’t. Everything is so wide open and up in the air here. It’s why I made the comment not long ago: There’s some genuine fear out there in Republican circles that the primaries are not going to decide this, that it’s going to be delegates being brokered and things at the convention, because it’s all jammed up, and nobody’s going to really know ’til the votes are taken and counted. I’m getting blue in the face saying that. I’m not trying to avoid answering the question, but I’m not going to sit here and tell you something I don’t know and make it up just to sound authoritative when I really have no clue how long anybody’s going to last in this thing.


RUSH: Chicago, Tad, thanks for calling. You’re up next on the EIB Network. Hello.

CALLER: Hey, thanks, Rush. I have a quick comment. A little over a year ago, you said you were done carrying people’s water for them, and recently you’ve been getting static callers asking them to basically support their candidate or confirm to them that their candidate is the one and only conservative candidate out there on the Republican side. If they believe their candidate is so viable and so conservative, why do they continue coming to you for that blessing?

RUSH: Because there isn’t one candidate breaking out. They’re all bunching up here, and people think that if I got behind their guy, that it could be perhaps the boost to launch this guy — whoever I would happen to endorse — out of the pack a little bit. So I understand their trying. They’ve forgotten that I have said I’m through carrying water. It’s a good point. I actually think… I want you people to know I’m flattered that you want me to endorse. Don’t misunderstand here. But the carry-the-water thing was meant in this way. You know, we’re in a primary situation, and we’re talking about running for president. It’s up to these guys to get noticed. It’s up to these guys with the force of their personalities and their charisma and their policy, their vision for the country. It’s up to them to get noticed. ‘But, Rush, the Drive-Bys are not…’ They know that going in. That’s my attitude about it. I don’t know how to say it any more than I have. I feel like I’ve been a broken record on this about this endorsement business, but it’s all going to work out. It’s all going to work out. It will happen as it will when it’s supposed to.

RUSH: Quentin in Dayton, Ohio, thank you for calling, and welcome.

CALLER: Hey, Rush.

RUSH: Hey!

CALLER: How are you doing today?

RUSH: I’m fine, sir. Thank you.

CALLER: Okay, a real quick explanation: One of the things that’s going to win or lose it for the Republican Party is if they try to outdo the Democrats going after that big single-mother vote. They’ve already disenfranchised a lot of the male base by going and doing whatever the feminists ask to get that vote.

RUSH: Wait a minute. The Republicans have to get the single-women vote, you’re saying?

CALLER: Well, no. I’m saying they gotta quit trying to outdo the —

RUSH: Oh. Oh, oh. Oh, okay. Yeah.

CALLER: — Democrats in trying to go after the woman vote.

RUSH: Well, that’s one of the things that’s bothering me, is we’ve got too many people trying to out-Democrat Democrats in certain ways. You know, Reagan conservatism works! (laughs) It’s been proven, and the dirty little secret is that whoever gets a majority of white men wins the presidency. That’s the dirty little secret.

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