Rush Goes On the Record with Fox News Channel’s Greta Van Susteren
Dec 15, 2011
VAN SUSTEREN: Tonight, Rush goes “On the Record,” and it is the in-depth interview you will only see right here. Here’s Rush.
VAN SUSTEREN: Rush, nice to see you.
RUSH: Thanks, Greta. Great to be here, as always.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you. And of course, we love being here, although we blew out your power when we arrived.
RUSH: Well, it’s the second time it’s happened. We should have been more prepared for this. But it only kept us off the air about three minutes. We’ll send you the bill.
VAN SUSTEREN: And of course, it’s the second time, though, but also the first time was us, too.
RUSH: Yes. Well, both times. The only two times. (laughing)
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, well, anyway, next time I promise that we won’t do it. The 2012 election — what do you think is the most important issue to conservative Americans? RUSH: Obama. Everything Obama. That’s the most important issue to conservative Americans. I don’t know how you separate Obama from his policies. Obama is his policies. Obama’s the problem. Obama has a vision of this country that is not held by anywhere near a majority of people.
Do you realize, if Barack Obama had run for office in 2008, campaigning on what he’s done, he wouldn’t have got 30 percent of the vote, if that, which is pretty much commensurate with the way that I think how liberals have to run. They have to lie. They have to mischaracterize who they are, what they are, what they want to do, what they stand for.
They are a minority in this country. They’re a minority of thought. But they are not received that way. They’ve got the mainstream media with them. The perception is that they’re a much larger bloc than they really are.
But if you had to single out one thing about Obama, it would be “Obamacare.” I mean, that sums up I think everything that’s disastrous, dangerous, destructive about Barack Obama. If that health care bill is not reformed, repealed, the country is going to change forever in ways that people cannot possibly imagine. It’s going to be a massive loss of individual liberty and freedom.
And once the government has control of health care and the costs involved, then they can dictate every aspect of the way you live based on saving money, whether or not you’re going to be treated based on your age, whether somebody thinks it’s worth it to save you if you have some sort of a bad disease. It’s just bad all the way around.
And people ask me, “Do you really think these things that you say about Obama?” And I do, I mean, from the bottom of my heart. And if you’ll recall, January 16th, before Obama was inaugurated, I was asked to write a piece for the Wall Street Journal, 400 words, of what I hoped for the president.
And I remember at that time, everybody was awash in the glow of the first black president, all the historical aspects of it. And that didn’t matter to me. Once he was elected, cool, fine, great achievement. His policies matter to me, what he’s going to do. And I told The Wall Street Journal it won’t take 400 words. I can do it in four: “I hope he fails.”
And what I meant by that was I hope that everything he wants to do policy-wise fails. He hasn’t failed. He has succeed beyond his wildest dreams, I’m sure. This national single-payer health care, which is where this is headed, if it happens, huge, huge achievement, ballgame. The green energy stuff — I mean, that’s all a hoax and a fraud based on another hoax and fraud, global warming. I do get interested in motivations, you know, why politicians do the things they do, what motivates them. A lot of people don’t care to get involved in that. I do because I think it’s a track. It can give you an idea where they’re going in the future if you understand what it is that motivates them.
And I have always suspected that Obama has a chip on his shoulder about the country, that he doesn’t think of it as great. He doesn’t think of it as exceptional. He thinks of it as criminal, in many ways, as guilty, in many ways. He thinks that our superpower status was a result of theft, resources and ideas from other nations all over the world. He believes the multicultural garbage that we came here, kicked the Indians off the land and brought with us racism, sexism, bigotry, homophobia, slavery, and all that.
And I think that Obama wants the people of this country to find out what it’s like to live the way he thinks we have forced other people around the world to live. And he said it when he was in Osawatomie, Kansas. He basically said that the way this country founded has never worked. Self-reliance — the way he characterized it was even to me offensive, that everybody is out fending for themselves.
Self-interest has fed more people than charity ever has. Self- interest, everybody trying to do the best for themselves. Not selfishness, but self-interest raises everybody up. It offends him. He says it’s never worked. He says 234 years, whatever, America has never worked. The rich are the problem.
Who believes that the rich are the reason we’ve got an economic mess? He does. Or he wants people to believe it. It’s offensive. It is outrageous. And I don’t relish the thought of four more years of this.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is he in your mind a bad guy or is it different ideology?
RUSH: (laughing) One and the same. What do you mean by bad guy? It could be a little loaded.
VAN SUSTEREN: I guess I mean a motive to — an intentional motive to hurt the country, versus his ideology is one that the way you achieve ideals is different values.
RUSH: This is the question. We are living under a number of assumptions about Obama that have been presented to us by elites of both parties. One of the illusions is that Obama’s brilliant, that he’s smarter than anybody else in the room, messianic. We have never had a politician like this in our midst, we were told in 2007, 2008. Nobody like Obama has ever trod our soil. He was going to unify us. The world was going to love us again. He was going to lower the sea levels. I mean, ridiculous stuff.
So the question is, is he just dumb? Does he really believe this economic stuff? Does he really believe that taking capital, money out of the private sector and transferring it to government and unions is the way you grow the private sector? Is that the way you create jobs? Does he really believe that? Is he that ill educated? Is he the product of nothing other than the American education system and whoever influenced him at home when he was young?
Or is he an ideologue? Is he a Marxist socialist who has an agenda that’s oriented toward cutting the country down to size? I mean, that’s the question. For me, the answer to the question is irrelevant. I think that whatever he’s doing, why he’s doing it, it’s obvious he is doing it. He is taking steps, he’s had policies that are injurious to the country, injurious to individuals, targeting as the enemy the people who work in this country, targeting as the enemy the people that pay taxes.
This business of this Occupy Wall Street crowd, which is his — it was created I think on the basis that Romney was going to be the Republican nominee. Romney’s Wall Street, so you get Obama’s band out there, Occupy Wall Street, protesting. It was set up to oppose Romney — Wall Street blamed for all these ills in the economy, like the subprime mortgage. The subprime mortgage problem, which is the root of this economic disaster we’re in, was strictly created by government. It was a plan designed, as Barney Frank has said, (imitating Frank) “Affordable housing.” Put people in homes that couldn’t afford them. Loan them money knowing they can’t pay it back, Community Redevelopment Act.
Bill Clinton started it, Jimmy Carter and Janet Reno, Andrew Cuomo, they forced lending institutions to make these loans, these mortgages, to people that can’t pay them back. The lending institutions are holding worthless paper. That’s no good. So what do they do? They come up with creative ways to turn that worthless paper into something of value by creating mortgage-backed securities that they then sell to another unsuspecting bunch of dupes down the line. And that kept happening until there was nobody left to buy them. The whole thing blew up, and it’s where we are. And Wall Street had nothing to do with it! They’re a convenient enemy. Obama loves to run around and talk about Wall Street tricked people into coming in and getting these loans. Wall Street didn’t trick anybody. They were told, they were ordered by the government to make these loans in fairness, stop redlining against minorities, and so forth. It was liberalism on parade!
Liberalism has given us every problem that we’re facing in this country today, without exception. Now, whether liberals are dumb and stupid and ill-educated, or whether this is purposeful, too late now to draw the distinction. It’s happening. And they’re doubling down on it. Three years, and every policy to create jobs hasn’t worked. Greta, do you realize there are 2.5 million fewer jobs in America than there were when Obama was immaculated? That’s why the unemployment rate’s dropping. There are fewer jobs. The universe from which we create this percentage has shrunk.
The real unemployment rate — who was it who said this? — there’s two people who have said this, old Financial Times guy, some guy named [Edward] Luce, James Pethokoukis at Reuters. If the same number of jobs existed when Obama was inaugurated, today, as in 2008, then the real unemployment rate would be 11 percent. It’s a disaster. And there’s been plenty of time to realize it doesn’t work and to change course. He hasn’t done that. So to me, it’s patently obvious he’s not going to do it because he doesn’t believe in it. What’s happening I think he enjoys.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think he’s going to get reelected?
RUSH: Well, you know, it’s a year away, 11 months away, and anything can happen. If the election were today, no. If the election were today, he’d lose in a landslide. I don’t believe the conventional wisdom that the Republicans only have one person that can beat him. I don’t believe the conventional wisdom that his billion dollars can dwarf any campaign, that his association with the media can disparage and criticize any opponent to the point they can’t win. The American people are hurting. Obama can’t run on his record. He cannot say, “Vote for me for four more years.” All Obama can do is run a negative campaign, tear apart his opponent, tear apart the country in the process. You know, these two guys that appear on your network a lot, [Pat] Caddell and [Doug] Schoen — they wrote a piece begging him to get out. Make way for Hillary. They said his only chance is to run such a scorched-earth campaign that even if he wins, he’s torn the country apart in the process, divided it worse than it’s been in decades. Not worth the price that his reelection would — and he wouldn’t have a mandate to do anything after he wins. But I think he’s eminently defeatable. So I don’t believe the inside-the-Beltway conventional wisdom about elections pretty much in any regard.
VAN SUSTEREN: You mentioned Hillary Clinton. Would she have been a different president?
RUSH: Not ideologically.
VAN SUSTEREN: How about in what she accomplished?
RUSH: I think she would have sought much the same kind of thing. I don’t know whether she would have succeeded, for example, in getting health care passed. But people have forgotten. You look what — they were — they were this close to deeming health care passed without voting on it, that close to deeming it because they really didn’t have the votes for it even with their own party. There was so much finagling going on to get health care passed that whether Hillary could have gotten it done or not — but she’s an Alinsky-ite. She’s a disciple of the same community organizer and agitator that inspired Obama. So, to me, it would have been six of one, half a dozen or the other.
VAN SUSTEREN: Has either one of them done anything that has impressed you?
RUSH: You know, I get this question all the time. Has Obama done anything to impress me? I like the number of vacations he takes. I wish I could take that many. He’s played 10 times the rounds of golf that I’ve played this year. But I’m not — see, the root of that question is, is there anything nice — they may be perfectly nice people, Greta. I’m strictly oriented toward policy. And in the area of policy, there’s — there’s — well, I guess Obama was honest last December when he acknowledged he had to extend the Bush tax cuts, you remember during the lame duck session of Congress. And if you go back and listen to what Obama was saying a year ago, last December versus today, it’s two different people. Last year we couldn’t end the Bush tax rate cuts because that would be a huge tax increase on the middle class. Now, wait a minute. Up until then, the Democrats and Obama said, No, no, no, no, no! The Bush tax cuts were for the rich only. Bush didn’t cut taxes on the middle class. Of course, he did. The Bush tax rate reductions were across the board for everybody. And Obama did not want to get rid of those last year because he did not want people with less money in their back pocket, be a tax increase, in his reelection year. But that irritated his base, so now he had to promise from January on through this year to get rid of it. The Bush tax cuts are now the big enemy. He’s going to get rid of them, raise taxes on the rich — totally disingenuous. But he was honest last December when he talked about the value of the Bush tax cuts and what damage would be caused if they got rid of them.
VAN SUSTEREN: Straight ahead, much more with Rush. What does he say is the biggest problem for Republicans in 2012? Rush will tell you next.
VAN SUSTEREN: Once again, here is Rush.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why has Governor Mitt Romney not had a so-called “surge”? We hear “surge” used with basically every Republican nominee, but you don’t see that “surge” with Governor Romney.
RUSH: Well, every poll I’ve seen of Republican primary voters, he can’t crack 30 percent. It has been curious. And you look at it from the reverse, 70 percent of Republican voters want somebody else. This is why we have the phenomenon of the “Not-Romney.” Bachmann was the “Not-Romney” for a while. Herman Cain was the “Not-Romney.” Now Newt is the “Not-Romney.” I think it boils down to something that’s not complicated at all. Republican primary voters are conservative. They don’t believe that Romney is. They believe that he will stick a finger in the air and moisten it and see which way the winds are blowing and try to get in that direction. They remember that Romney said he believes in global warming and he believes that man is causing it. Well, conservatives don’t believe that. They believe it’s a hoax. Conservatives know that the whole story of man-made global warming is a hoax. And they’re not going to get excited by a candidate who is trying to gain favor with non-Republican primary voters by articulating that stuff.
Here’s the big problem, Greta, for the Republicans. And I am a lone wolf on this. The rule of thumb in elections, both parties, 40 percent are going to vote Democrat automatically, whatever you do, 40 percent are going to vote Republican, automatic, no matter what you do. And in the middle, who do we have? The precious, God love them, independents and the moderates. And they are the targets. They are the focus of every election. And our brilliant campaign consultants tell our candidates they are the ones that know how to go get a majority of those independents. And we have, as Republicans, put ourselves in prison to this whole silly notion that you only win elections by moving to the center and getting great independents. Fine and dandy, but if you squander your base in the process, you haven’t a prayer.
The Republican Party is trying to do something in this primary that is unprecedented. They’re trying to split the conservative vote and win the primary with a moderate, with Romney. It’s the other way around. You consolidate your base and then you move to the center in the general. The Republican establishment has decided they don’t want any part of conservatism. And this is really not new. People are surprised to hear this, but the Republican Party formative event with conservatism is Goldwater’s landslide defeat. That’s what they think of when they think conservative. They don’t think Reagan. They think Goldwater.
They believe what the inside-the-Beltway philosophy is about conservatives. They’re racist, sexist, bigot, homophobe, Southern hayseed hicks. They’re pro-lifers. They’re embarrassing to have to go to the convention with them. And they’re just embarrassed to have those kind of people in the party. They’re dumb. They’re not erudite. They’re not educated in Ivy League schools. We’ll take their votes on election day, but we really don’t want to hang around with them. We don’t want anybody in Washington thinking that we’re really that close to them and aligned with them. So in the process — you know, it’s a very sophisticated electorate. The Republican primary voter can sense that the Republican Party really doesn’t like them, really doesn’t want them, thinks that they are the route to defeat. That’s the problem in a nutshell. The Republican establishment thinks that a conservative nominee is the route to defeat because they think Goldwater landslides are going to happen because they believe what the popular misconception the left has created of conservatives — they think everybody thinks that.
And so the independents — this is the craziest thing. Listen to this. I love this. Barbara Boxer said yesterday that Republicans with this latest bill on the payroll tax and the pipeline, want to kill 8,100 people — 8,100 people. Barbara Boxer: Republicans want to kill 8,100 people. Republicans want dirty air, dirty water. Republican CEOs want to kill their customers, okay? Now, that’s what the Democrats say. You’ve got mean-spirited extremist stuff coming out of Harry Reid’s mouth and Pelosi’s mouth. You’ve got that. Then you have our candidates. There was a fascinating news story on Yahoo News the other day. Yahoo inadvertently was invited to listen to a conference call between the RNC and a polling group. I think it was Torrance. The RNC was seeking advice from Torrance on how to beat Obama. And the people at Torrance said, (paraphrasing) “Well, don’t criticize him personally. He’s got very high personal numbers. People love him. Feel even feel sorry for him. Don’t attack Obama.”
OK, well, then you’ll lose. If that’s what you’re going to do, you lose because you can’t separate Obama from his policies. And they said, “Don’t bring up Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Don’t bring up Bill Ayers. Don’t bring up anything like that. Don’t go personal. People like Obama.” Well, OK. Put ourselves in a straitjackets, we lose. And that belief system is rooted in the fact that the great 20 percent, precious independents and moderates don’t like conflict, don’t like criticism of Obama, don’t like confrontation. They want to us work together across the aisle, compromise. Fine. Really? So we criticize Obama, they’re going to run off to Nancy Pelosi or Barbara Boxer, who’s accusing us of killing people? They look at the Democrats as mild-mannered compromisers? It’s a bunch of crap, Greta!
This whole notion that the Republicans can’t be confrontational, can’t be aggressive, can’t go on offense because they’re going to tick off the independents and send them running to the Democrats is a scam philosophy that has been foisted upon us to shut us up. It’s a minor version of political correctness. We’re not supposed to be honest in what we believe. We’re not supposed to be critical of liberalism or socialism. It makes the independents nervous. So what do we do? We nominate milquetoast moderates! And what do they do? They lose! But we feel better about ourselves.
And I actually think that if you can get — and you talk to these guys — Republican establishment, elected officials, party officials, certain inside-the-Beltway media — you just asked me, Can Obama be beat? Hell, yes! They’ll tell you they don’t think so. They’re scared to death. They’re totally on defense. I’m going to tell you something. Nobody won anything defending anything. You win on offense. You win attacking. You don’t win defending anything because you can’t advance. They’re always defending. You can’t advance anything.
So we’ve got this notion that I think they believe Obama can’t be beat. But they want the Senate back. They want their chairmanships. They want the Congress back, House and Senate. They think maybe they can stop Obama that way. But more importantly, they’re in charge of the money. They get the committee chairmanships. I would rather have somebody who thinks Obama can be beat, knows Obama can be beat and wants Obama to be beat. And that’s going to be somebody who’s conservative, not moderate, not squeamish, not populist. We don’t need a candidate who’s going to try to say things or be things he really doesn’t believe or really isn’t to try to pick off a couple independents or Democrats here because I think conservatism appeals to everybody if it’s articulated properly, passion, good cheer, because conservatism is all about the best for everybody.
It’s all about the best everybody can be, using whatever ambition or desire they’ve got, not shackles, not — we don’t look at people and say, “You can’t do that. You’re not capable.” We don’t look at people with contempt, like the Democrat Party does and liberals do and see a bunch of failure that needs to be guided from the time you’re born to the time they die by government. It’s obscene what is happening to this country, families being destroyed by welfare programs. I saw something In USA Today, just today — now, 50 years ago, 71 percent of adults were married. Today, 51 percent of adults are married. Now, okay, big deal. Families — there are fewer families, fewer mom and dad families. The government has replaced one of the parents financially. So there’s a cultural rot. There’s a cultural decay and all of this has been brought about by the good intentions of liberals and the Democrat Party. And we’re not supposed to question their good intentions. “The Great Society, why, we were trying to bring people out of poverty.” But you haven’t! “Well, we were trying. You can’t criticize!” Yes, I can! You failed! It’s a disaster!
Obamacare is a disaster. His stimulus has been a disaster. We can’t afford more. Look at the debt! Look at the prison that future people not even a thought in a couple of adults’ heads yet are already in prison because of the tax rate they’re going to pay just to deal with this debt. We can’t afford what we’re spending on anything right now. It’s absurd. It has to be stopped. And it can’t be done even in one election. This is the first, and then reversing things, reducing the size of government’s going to take some committed people.
VAN SUSTEREN: Coming up: Does Rush have a favorite? Which candidate or candidates does he think could beat President Obama? Rush answers that question next.
VAN SUSTEREN: Our conversation with Rush continues. The topic: the battle for the White House.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: If you think someone who is moderate cannot beat Obama or should not be selected by the Republican Party, who is the most conservative who fits the bill of what you think is a Republican who can beat Obama?
RUSH: Well, I think, again, now, if the election were held today, I know since I don’t subscribe or practice conventional wisdom that my answer here is going to discredit me with all the professional political experts. But I think right now anybody other than Ron Paul could beat Obama if the election were tomorrow, easily.
Who is most conservative? You know, Romney and Gingrich are fighting it out. And all kinds of things are surfacing, such as Romney — we had a tape from 2002 the other day on the radio program where Romney campaigning for governor of Massachusetts said, “I don’t want anyone to be mistaken. I am not a part of Republican. I am a moderate.” Okay, fine. People said, “Rush, he’s running for election in Massachusetts. He’s got to do that.” That’s my point. If you are going to be what you think you have to be here one day based on where you are, and here another day, then people are going to question if you are genuine. Then he comes out with this global warming thing, (paraphrasing) “Yeah, I believe it’s getting warmer, and yeah, I think man is causing it.” That was in answer to a planted question at a town hall meeting or press conference he had. And it was some new castrati liberal guy who got in there and asked the question. And I am sure Romney thought he gave the best answer he could give, given that he’s in the Northeast, New Hampshire I think he was. And then Newt writes a book in 2009 praising Andy Stern of the SEIU, the greatest president ever is FDR. So a lot of things are shaking out here.
On the other hand, I know that I get calls on my radio show, I talk to people. A lot of people are hoping that Rick Perry catches fire again or Bachmann or Santorum catch fire and come alive, because perception is that there is no doubt concern about the conservative credentials. There is no doubt that every day either of those three would be fighting for the country and what they believe in exactly as they are campaigning for it. There isn’t a qualification of belief over here or change because of where you happen to be or what the audience is or who the audience is.
I don’t want to be misunderstood as seeking perfection, because it doesn’t exist. We’re all imperfect, everybody. There is no such thing as perfection. And there is no way to remove risk from life. You can’t achieve perfection. You can try for it. It’s a great motivation. You can’t remove risk and you can’t achieve perfection. Nobody is going to be flawless. At the end of the day, somebody is going to win this nomination fight. It’s up to them to win it. It’s not up to people in the media to hype them or endorse them. I don’t think it works much anyway. So at the end of the day somebody will win this. And the hope I have is there is enough left to unify this conservative base behind that candidate because it will take a base fully participatory, not sitting home in a peak of anger because another McCain is nominated, for example. It has to be somebody that will be inspiring and get people to the polls. There will be a lot of fraud, crazy things happening in various states, but I am imminently, profoundly optimistic that we can win.
VAN SUSTEREN: You named Bachmann, Santorum and Perry as being not like Romney and Gingrich where they have had different, or obvious difference, views on important issues. Why do you think that Bachmann, Perry, and Santorum can’t get any sort of movement in the polls? They are way low in polls.
RUSH: Well, that is largely, both Romney and Gingrich are personalities. They have been around for years. Newt is larger than life. Newt is well-known. A lot of people’s memory of Newt is, here is a guy that actually cut government. Here’s a guy that actually balanced a budget. Here’s a guy that actually took the House back from the Democrats. A lot of people have the memory. Bachmann is a member of Congress. She has had 100,000 people vote for her. This is her first foray on the national stage. Rick, his last foray was a Senate defeat. Perry is a governor coming out of Texas, running on a national stage for the first time. People are naturally suspicious. They will take a while to get to know people. And they will watch the early debate and size them up for confidence, the ability to speak, all these kinds of things. A lot of it depends who is asked what in these debates, who gets a lot of time, who doesn’t. There are so many variables in this.
But it boils down to, it is up to these people to get noticed. It’s their job. They are running. It’s up to them to get noticed; it’s up to them to get the votes; it’s up to them to make the connection that lights people up. Why some people can do it, like I can, and others can’t, talent I guess. Who knows?
VAN SUSTEREN: The debates — helpful to the American people or not so useful?
RUSH: These are. This series of debates, I think on balance most of them have actually been very good, have been very thorough. And I think they have had many, many good debates where conservatism was actually well articulated and explained and argued about. And I think the early debates there was a doubtless unity that the real target here politically was Obama. That is who everybody was focused on beating.
I’ll tell you one thing that worries me about the whole concept of debates, though, on television is that Republicans, conservatives, are fed up with their candidate being perceived as an idiot, stupid, hayseed hick. The Democrat candidate is always portrayed as erudite, brilliant, smart, well-spoken, articulate. George Bush was not those things. George Bush spoke haltingly, had a deer-in-the-headlight-appearance eyes sometimes on camera. And throughout the eight years, the undercurrent was Bush was stupid. Bush was dumb. He never fought back. Karl Rove will tell you he did not respond or defend that stuff, counter it. So it was allowed to sit and grow and fester. And so now the Republicans, I got a call today, “I will vote for Gingrich just because I think he can mop the floor with Obama in a debate.”
VAN SUSTEREN: Coming up, the Tea Party, but it is not what you are thinking. Rush talks tea next. And this is not a joke. It’s real. You have to see what happens next.
VAN SUSTEREN: Rush always has something brewing, and tonight he tells us about the brewing business, tea.
VAN SUSTEREN: Another topic, entrepreneurship. Tea, — Two If By Tea. You’ve got a new program with it. We talked about this before, this tea.
RUSH: You know what we did? My wife and I, Kathryn, when the Tea Party craze hit, she said, “You know, you need to have your own tea.” I do radio. I do that very well. We talked about it. And she said, “Well, you know, all the time you’re talking about how tough is it for small business under Obama. Why don’t we do it and find out?” So it became a multipurpose venture. Obviously, we hope it makes a profit. Obviously, we are hoping it becomes a successful business. But it has been eye-opening and a learning experience. When you put a food product on the market what you have to go through, the regulatory hoops you have to go through the legalities, the lawyers, the people to hire. It has been a profound education for us. But it is the best — we just announced this blueberry flavor today, and I guarantee if I unscrewed this cap and you smelled it you would think you were smelling blueberry muffin batter. People say blueberry with tea? Yes, and you can taste the tea, too. It is just delicious.
And we did something funny. We ran a contest, a sweepstakes. We asked customers to make 30-second video commercials for two of my teas. We said we might run them on TV for TV advertising. And we got loads of them. And they were great!
RUSH: We actually had prizes for the top three places. And I got a call from a woman last week named Elizabeth from upstate New York. She said, “You know, what is great about you doing this, the commercials for this, you are helping people demonstrate the talent that exists in this country.” We only had two rules. You had to say “Two If By Tea” twice and you have to say “from tea to shining tea.” Other than that, do whatever you want in the commercial. The creativity that these people put into it, the work. This woman said, “Do you realize there is talent galore in this country waiting to be unleashed.” And she was right. And, frankly, I was so immersed in the contest itself picking a winner, I didn’t see it. She was brilliant when she assessed that. We put the video on the Facebook page and on our website so people can see it.
VAN SUSTEREN: We have a couple YouTube videos up.
RUSH: They are funny. They’re creative. It’s another way for the audience to be involved in the radio program. Greta, just look at that label.
VAN SUSTEREN: It’s a great label.
RUSH: “Rush Revere.” The bottle is filled all the way to the top. Free shipping. The bottle won’t crinkle on you when you sip the tea out of it. Everything about it is first class. There is not a better tasting tea. Right now, it’s available on the internet only on our website because we want to maintain direct contact with the customers.
VAN SUSTEREN: Rush, who else is involved with this besides, I know you and your wife. What else are you doing with this?
RUSH: We sponsor the Marine Corps Law-Enforcement Foundation. They are a charity that donates college scholarships to the children of marines killed in action. And again, this is a legal thing. I have to be careful how I characterize, but we sent a donation to them last week. I can’t tell you how much. But we sponsor them as part of the business.
And I also should point out, every aspect of this is American.
VAN SUSTEREN: Made here.
RUSH: Made in America. People are employed along the way. None comes from outside the shores of the United States. We have a gift package or gift box that you can get for the holidays that has two coffee mugs with my Rush Revere on it. They’re even made in America, which was hard to find. But everything about this is American, all of our employees, all of the manufacturing process at every step along the line. And sponsorship with the Marine Corps Law-Enforcement Foundation is heartwarming, too. I got to know those guys. Jim Kallstrom, former head of the FBI in New York, is on their board. I met the guys, among the first people when I arrived in New York in 1988. And they put this together in the early ’90s. And I got wind of it and have been a supporter of their operation since they founded. So it’s a great relationship. On the bottle, we even got a little Iwo Jima notification form. So we’re very proud of that.
VAN SUSTEREN: Rush, thank you very much.
RUSH: Thank you very much. I appreciate it. Anytime.