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RUSH: Gary in Charlotte, North Carolina. Welcome, sir. It’s great to have you here.

CALLER: Welcome, Rush. I’ve got a great and simple message: “Rush for President!”

RUSH: (chuckling)

CALLER: The battle for our country is not between Democratic and Republican Party but rather a liberal view versus a conservative view of America and our collective future. You recently said that being part of something greater than yourself such as your love for the country is greater than your self-interest. Considering that Obama is an empty suit and proven liar, it is his skills as a liberal orator that elected him as president twice and not his vision for America. Obama is all about the facade of a photo-op as he spins his convoluted narrative. There’s not a more effective communicator and supporter of conservative worldview in America today than Rush Limbaugh, and everybody recognizes that.

RUSH: Well, that’s… I’m sure some would debate you strenuously on that, by the way. There are many who would disagree with you on that.

CALLER: Rush —

RUSH: Twenty years ago they wouldn’t have (chuckles), but today they would.

CALLER: Well, with the truth on your side and a direct dialogue with the people centered on substance, you’ll motivate the electorate not to surrender to the culture but truly to bring about hope and change.

RUSH: All right, let me share something. We all have thoughts. We all, in private moments, sit around and think. And I do, too. In fact, I sometimes think that I think too much. Sometimes I envy the ignorant. I envy people who can just turn it off and be blissful and not care. But that isn’t me. I just have never found a way. I mean, on vacation. During moments of real despair over the direction of the country, I have, I guess, fantasized over buying an hour on all three major networks, maybe even only one (the other two will cover it), and giving a speech to people of the country.

I always come up with reasons why it might not be helpful or productive. Again, because of things I have done that make me a target. Things that I have done that make me open to criticism and being discredited. It doesn’t deter me from the desire to do it, when thinking about it, it’s always broke down to, “Will it be effective?” How to make effective, how to do it effectively. It certainly wouldn’t be about me. I’m famous enough. I don’t need anymore of that, certainly. The idea of running for president? I’ve never considered it.

Even in these private little moments, I’ve never considered that, because I wouldn’t make it past my presidential announcement. Look, I’m the guy who invented the word “feminazi.” That’s the first negative ad that would be run. You can pull any number of those. Here’s the thing. This is why a campaign would be problematic. Getting an audience is a far different thing than getting votes. There’s a host of a program which is said to be “controversial.” I’ve always rejected the idea, by the way, that this program is controversial, because most people agree with me. Where is the controversy?

There isn’t any controversy here: 95% of the people listening agree, if not more. However, I can make a good living. I can continue to work with half or 30 or 20% of the audience hating me. In fact, one of the things I’ve had to do psychologically, in order to thrive, I’ve had to learn how to take being reviled (chuckles) and hated as a sign of success. Most people are not raised — I certainly wasn’t — to want to be hated. I can only think maybe one or two people who were. Hitler. Maybe somebody else. Maybe Saddam.

But I don’t know anybody whose parents raised them, “Son, you go out there and the more people that hate you, the bigger impact you’re making.” I don’t know anyone who is raised that way. Parents raise their kids to be loved because every parent wants their kids to be loved and every parent when he or she was a kid wanted to be loved. So I’ve had to learn how to take being reviled and hated by the 25 or 30% of liberals out there as a sign of success. But you cannot win elections being hated. People just aren’t going to vote for you like they will listen to you or like they won’t watch you if you have to have a TV program.

But, regardless, I know that the purpose of your call here was to extend that great compliment, and I sincerely appreciate it. I am genuinely modest and humble and so I have a tough time knowing how to properly accept compliments like that, other than to say, “Thank you.” But I’m with you on where we are and what the argument in the country is really about, meaning it’s not Democrat/Republican. It’s actually more specific even than to say liberal versus conservative. It’s more specific than that. But I have to take a brief timeout. Gary, thanks so much for the call. I appreciate it.

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