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RUSH: Chris in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Great to have you on the program. Hello.

CALLER: Hi. And happy Independence Day eve to you, Rush.

RUSH: Thank you. Thanks, Chris, very much.

CALLER: You’re welcome. Hey, I just wondering if you would consider calling the winners of your Two If By Tea contest live during your show, and that way the rest of your audience, your listeners, could share in the excitement and joy of —

RUSH: Now, that’s intriguing. Here’s what we would have to do. There is a regulation from the FCC which says you cannot put somebody on the air without their permission. So, as contest rules, we would have to change them and we would have to say, “Everybody entering understand that if you win, you might be called live on the air.” And even then it’s kind of dicey. Then the second thing is, we call with a blocked number because we don’t want our number getting out there, and a lot of people don’t pick up blocked numbers, Chris, they let ’em ring to voice mail.

So I don’t know how exciting it would be just to hear us leave the message on somebody’s voice mail that they’ve won. Now, if we could guarantee that every winner would give us permission to put ’em on the air, and if we could guarantee that every winner would pick up the phone, but we can’t, they’re not gonna know it’s us calling. And if we call them in advance and say, “You’ve won, you’re gonna get called sometime later today or tomorrow, be ready for it,” then they’re not gonna be spontaneously excited and the full effect of it you wouldn’t hear.

But it’s a great idea. It’s a great thought. Back in the old days when there weren’t these kind of regulations, this is how radio contest winners were identified all the time. They were called live, on the air so the audience could share in the excitement and hear it.

CALLER: Yeah. Well, thanks for the explanation.

RUSH: I’m glad you’d like to hear it. I’m flattered that it’s something that you would find interesting, ’cause I would venture to say half the people do not believe that it is me and Kathryn calling. They think that they’re being tricked. And that’s half the fun of it, is when they finally believe that it’s real.

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