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RUSH: And greetings to you, music lovers, thrill-seekers, conversationalists, debate aficionados all across the fruited plain, you are tuned where every American is. You’ve heard what everybody thinks about the debate last night, but you don’t know what to think yet because you haven’t heard what I think. Right? Come on, admit it. You know that’s true. Telephone number, 800-282-2882, and the e-mail address,ElRushbo@eibnet.com.

You know, I thought about teasing you. I thought about saying, “You know what, I’m gonna reserve my thoughts until I hear from you because, once I say something, there’s nothing left to be said.” I thought that would be a dastardly trick. By the way, folks, I’m in a relatively good mood. I don’t know what would spoil it, maybe something could, but I love the kind of day we are having here. It’s like nighttime out there. It is cloudy. It is rainy. It is so bad the DirecTV signal’s in and out. And I don’t have a window. That’s for security reasons, and distraction reasons. But, man, I love these kinds of days. Cozy. The only problem is it’s like 110 degrees out there. He-he-he-he. You want a day like this to be in the forties or fifties.

Anyway, okay. I’ll tell you here just stream of consciousness thoughts. Overall — and I’m gonna back all this up with detail in a moment — the overall view of the night is that not a whole lot is gonna change because of what happened last night. Not a whole lot. Meaning Trump is still gonna be in the lead when it’s all said and done. CNN is gonna have had a huge audience. I’m now beginning to question this. I’m not sure it’s just Trump driving these audiences for these Republican debates. More on that as the program unfolds.

Let me qualify that. If you’re a Trump supporter, last night was no harm, no foul. Nothing happened last night to damage Trump significantly, and I don’t think anything is going to. If Trump is to eventually fade away, it’s not gonna happen overnight anyway. It’s not gonna happen because of one thing. We know that now. There’s no such thing as Trump stepping in it. If there’s anything to cause Trump supporters to leave — and I know that sounds like blasphemy to you Trump supporters — if anything is gonna cause that to happen, I don’t know what it is, but it’s gonna slow and gradual. There isn’t gonna be this earthquake moment. And I say that because the Regime and the Republican Party is looking for that to happen.

I mean, the RNC, the Republican establishment, they want a singular event to happen that takes Trump out and be done with it, and I don’t think that’s gonna happen. If there is to be — and I’m not predicting it, so hold on to your cookies. I’m just saying “if.” If it happens, it’s going to be gradual. Watching that debate last night, I thought at times I was actually watching 11 of me. These people were fabulous last night on that stage! I mean, not everybody, some exceptions here and there, but, man, that was something to be proud of last night. You know that CNN went in there, I don’t care that they may want to take Trump out, but there’s no way CNN wants our people to look good. I got so fed up I almost turned it off in the first hour.

Every question was, “All right, Ms. Fiorina, Mr. Trump said you look like a horse. What’s your reaction?”

“Mr. Trump, Ms. Fiorina says you don’t know what you’re talking about. What’s your reaction?”

“Mr. Walker, Governor Walker, Rand Paul says you don’t know what you’re talking about. What’s your reaction?”

I hate that. When I’m interviewed by the media and they throw critics comments in, I say, “Screw this. Why do I have to respond to what these — why don’t you ask me a question that you actually want the answer to. Why throw these other comments in about these people I don’t even care about.” It’s another reason, one of the many, I stopped doing interviews with people, it’s all it was. And this debate last night started out that way. But these people rose above it. Chris Christie came out of the grave and once again sounded like a conservative last night.

Carly Fiorina is a RINO in many ways in her past. She was in the McCain campaign. Two years ago she criticized Ted Cruz for government shutdown activity and so forth. I’ve been touting Carly ever since this whole process began. She is obviously very smart and committed and energetic and so forth, and she’s right on so much of what she says, and I remember touting her. She went back to it last night talking about the character of this country and how we’re losing that when she brilliantly combined the answer to Planned Parenthood and Iran. I thought it was well done. It was very conservative. But Carly, you go back to 2008, and she was right in there with Meg Whitman and McCain and so forth, part of RINO caucus.

There was a lot of conservatism on that stage last night. I thought Marco Rubio was great. I thought Cruz was good, but… I don’t know. I feel uncomfortable here passing out advice. It’s not my business. You know, why do they care what I think? So don’t ask me about individuals. I mean, that’s not where I want to go right now. We’ll get to that. I am not the titular head of the party anymore. In no world am I the titular head of this Republican Party. I’m not the phony head. I’m not the real head. (interruption) All right, maybe that, maybe the titular head of the conservative movement.

But I just want to make some general observations here. I really thought that there was a lot of conservatism. There was a time I thought that I was watching 11 Rush Limbaughs last night. Trump, whatever else you want to say, has clearly moved many of the other candidates to the right, and not just on the subject of illegal aliens. You know, you see how feathers got ruffled last night. Trump: “If it weren’t for me, nobody’d be talking about it.” “Mr. Trump, we’ve been talking about this for 25 years, Mr. Trump. And, Mr. Trump, you haven’t been leading anybody on anything. We’ve been out here, we’ve been sweating and toiling away. You’re not leading anybody.”

But all that means is that there’s now a genuine competition to move where? To the right. They might not be touting the word “conservative.” I was also pleasantly surprised by the number of people that tried to link themselves to Ronaldus Magnus last night, which makes sense ’cause they were at the Reagan library. I’m not complaining about this, by the way. I think it’s great for the American public to hear conservatism being espoused, even if for some people it’s just a matter of political expedience. I’m not saying all of those people on the stage are genuine conservatives. Don’t misunderstand. But I’m saying they were talking it and it’s great for the American people to see that, compared to what exists on the other side.

That’s why I say I’m not sure Trump is the only driver of ratings for these debates. Clearly a factor. Don’t misunderstand. But I’m wondering, with as much as we’re learning of the dissatisfaction so many Americans have with the status quo, no matter what you say about low-information voters, they still know that the Republican Party’s the opposition party. What they think of it may be something we’d rather not deal with, but they know that it is.

In other words, they know that if you want to go to find out what other people think about what’s happening, the Republican Party’s where to go. So you have a debate on CNN last night of Republican candidates, it could well be — and I’m looking at this as a positive, folks, not trying to take anything away from Trump here — there could be just a general wide and varied interest in anything other than what’s going on now because there’s so much dissatisfaction with it, and that could be a factor.

Now, of course as I predicted, CNN did their best to get the other candidates to attack Trump. And we knew this going in. We knew this was going to happen. In fact, we’d heard rumblings and even mention that it was Carly Fiorina’s assignment last night to take out Trump. I don’t think there needed to be an assignment. Once you call her a horse face, that kind of takes care of Carly being set up to take out Trump. What’d you think of that, Snerdley, what’d you think of the way she did that? You know what it illustrated? Brevity is the soul of wit. That answer, what, was 27 words, 12 words, not a big, long dissertation. And how do you think Trump looked when he said, “By the way, she’s beautiful.”

I tell you what, we got sound bite. Gloria Borger was so offended by that. It was the ultimate pander for Trump to look at Carly after all this and call her beautiful. Borger was just livid over that, proving you can’t win, you just can’t win. Stick with the original claim and then take whatever you get from that. You’d think more men would have learned this by now. According to the people who track these things, 44% of the questions in the second debate were about Trump. Do you believe that? Does that surprise you, when I give you that stat? (interruption) It doesn’t surprise you? Forty-four percent of the questions were about Trump.

And how about Christie? Christie getting all, you know, “Hey, Carly! Hey, Donald! You’re great people. We don’t care about your careers! We care about their careers!” And that is the only time Fiorina got flustered, that and HP. When Hewlett-Packard was brought up, and next they’re gonna bring up Lucent. They didn’t get to Lucent much. (interruption) Yeah, but they didn’t get to it. That’s the next thing.

Fortune magazine does a whole profile on Lucent that’s not pretty. They did a hit… (interruption) Not now. It’s an old hit piece. (interruption) Yeah, Fortune did a piece on Carly at Lucent. I’m just telling you, this stuff’s all coming. But that’s the only time she got flustered. She blinked. She’s very proud of her time at Hewlett-Packard. It’s one of those things that has a life of its own, the fact she bombed out and failed, and it’s tough to say, “No, I didn’t bomb out and fail! Let me try to tell you.

“You know, Steve Jobs even called it…” It’s like trying to discredit somebody with hypocrisy. It just doesn’t work anymore. You can point out all the hypocrisy in the world. Doesn’t work. Well, okay, for example, it’d be like back in the eighties, people trying to discredit Reagan ’cause he was once a Democrat. It wouldn’t work. It didn’t matter. It’s like if you try to discredit Dr. Krauthammer by saying he once voted for Mondale. It’s not gonna matter, because that’s then; this is now. (interruption)

Yeah. I think Dr. Krauthammer worked on the Mondale campaign back in 1984. I’m not sure if he voted or not, but, yeah. The point is that pointing that out now is not gonna discredit Dr. Krauthammer or anybody else. My only point is hypocrisy is not a way of getting people to change their minds. It just never does work — on our side anyway. Trying to point out the hypocrisy of the left never works. It’s frustrating to a lot of people, but it never does. (interruption)

Well, see, Snerdley’s asking me what did I think about the other questions, the non-Trump questions, the climate change question. You know, I’ve blown a gasket during this. I’m sure you’re thinking as you’re watching, “Rush is blowing a gasket!” ‘Cause they all accepted the premise. I think Rubio’s answer was right on the money. “Okay, fine, fine. But the Democrat solution? Why would we want to destroy our economy?” Maybe that’s the way to do this. I mean, there’s no way…

Here’s a great example. I don’t care what ammunition you have, you are not gonna convince Jacob Tapper that global warming is a manufactured political issue by the American and worldwide left. You’re not gonna convince ‘im. He believes it’s real. And so, too every other… Like my little tech bloggers. They all think it’s real. There is no fact, there is no amount of data that is gonna persuade them that they’re wrong about it. I mean, there’s mountains of it, and it doesn’t matter.

Eighteen-and-a-half years, no temperature increase? Now Jerry Brown’s out there saying this drought is global warming and it’s only gonna get worse, and he wants new taxes for it. So the way Rubio went about it last night was very smart. Rather than get into an argument, which I would have done… You know, I wouldn’t have accepted the premise. “This global warming thing’s a scam.” But the way Rubio did it was to attack their solution as making it worse, and why do we want to punish people?

Why do we want to punish our economy, when we’re the only ones who are gonna be doing it? Other polluters… Blah, blah. The ChiComs and the Indians are not gonna change anything. But that question, you know, was also understandable. Remember CNN is asking these questions. And CNN, as an entity, believes in climate change. I mean, you have to. Climate change/global warming is one of these issues you have to believe in you are going to be a Democrat, or a liberal.

You can’t not believe in and it be a liberal Democrat. And then of course some people are calling it Trump’s flip-flop on Carly’s appearance, now that he thinks she’s beautiful. CNN got that on record, by the way. That’s now on videotape that Donald Trump thinks Carly Fiorina is beautiful. You know, when they were going through the end of the debate, choose your Secret Service code name? (interruption) You thought that was lame? Yeah. Those are tough questions.

It’s like, “Name your top 10 favorite movies.”

“Oh, my gosh, I’m freezing! I can’t even think of one.”

But did you hear what hers was? You don’t remember what hers…? (interruption) Yeah, it was a one-worder. Carly Fiorina’s Secret Service code name… (singing Jeopardy theme) “Secretariat.” That’s right. I think she was baiting Trump into making another untoward joke. Secretariat’s a champion horse, a Triple Crown winner. You know, with my hearing, when I first heard her, I thought she said, “Secretary.” I thought, “What — what — what — what?” And then I figured out Secretariat and put it all together. She’s baiting Trump to make another face comment.


RUSH: Again, if you missed the first hour, the overview of the debate, as far as I was concerned — and I put this basically as the overall, everything thrown in, everything tabulated — there was nothing earth-shattering last night that is going to upset the standings as they are in a dramatic way. And everybody was hoping for that last night on the establishment side.

The establishment side was hoping, and they have been hoping. They’re hoping for one thing to happen that’ll get rid of Donald Trump. And that didn’t happen. An assessment that I shared in the previous hour I will repeat: For those of you in the establishment waiting for that one moment, I don’t think that one moment is going to happen. IF… Capital I, capital F. IF Trump is to lose in his number one position here, it isn’t gonna be an overnight thing. It’s going to be something that attrition, something that happens over time.

When is the next debate? It’s not any time soon. It’s like six weeks from now, right? So what’s gonna happen between now and the next debate that is going to cause a major shift? Now, this is not to say that individual candidates did not maybe gain ground or lose ground last night. But in terms of the overall makeup of the race, not much changed. You might have Carly Fiorina moving into second place now ahead of Ben Carson. And Christie might have moved up a notch or two.

You might have Jeb Bush move up a point or two. Depends. Nobody knows yet until the polling data comes out on this. And then you have to decide whether or not that you want to believe that. Now, Carly Fiorina did well no matter what. No matter what the circumstances, no matter what the pre-publicity was, just within that universe of three hours, it’s undeniable she was on her game. She was ready to roll, she was competent, she was smart, she was well spoken.

There was only one moment when she appeared to be flustered at all, and that’s the moment in the debate where her CEO period of time at Hewlett-Packard came up. That’s something obviously that is important to her, and I wouldn’t say unnerves her, but it’s the only point in the debate where I think she got a little bit self-conscious. I really think the key to performing in things like this is being able to rid yourself of the self-consciousness that everybody has. It’s a tough, tough thing to do.

And the success that one has in dropping the self-con… You’ve heard people say they’re “in the zone.” Athletes and other performers say, “Yeah, I was just in the zone. I can’t tell you what it was like! I can’t describe it. I was just in the zone. I mean, every pitch looked like a grapefruit; I couldn’t miss it. Yeah, I’m running the football, and there’s nobody near me! No way I’m not catching that football. No way I’m not scoring.”

Golfers, the same thing. “The shot’s gonna end up two feet from the pin. I just know it. I’m in the zone.” Well, speech-makers and stage performers have the same types of nights. They have the zone. And my contention is when you’re in the zone is when you’re totally devoid of any self-consciousness. I think that is the great characteristic or talent or quality that really great actors have. If you are going to really convince people you are somebody else, you have to be able to totally abandon yourself, in your own consciousness.

Such things as worrying about how you look. You worry is your tie straight. You worry about how do I sound, not being distracted by somebody in the audience. That’s a biggie. When you’re up there making a speech, you’re auto-answering a question at the debate, and somebody frowns in the audience? It can take you off your game, if you have not shed your self-consciousness. Self-consciousness also includes being concerned about what other people think about what you’re doing, what you look like, how you look compared to everybody else.

Because it ends up generally the more self-conscious you are, the more hard on yourself you are, the more negative you are about yourself. Now, you may find that strange. Egomaniacs only love themselves. That’s a different thing. Egomania, egoism is a different thing here than self-consciousness. That’s its own psychological state, and that state really is one in which you’re totally devoid of reality. Abandoning self-consciousness puts you right smack-dab in the middle of reality.

You are in the midst of it, and I think that’s where she was last night. And what was amazing to me about it was that’s exactly where she wanted to be. She had to have a pre-debate strategy, and I guarantee you in her camp they hit a grand slam. You know how you can tell? She didn’t hang around for the spin zone. She had no representatives in the spin zone. There wasn’t anything else left to say. She just got out of there. Everybody else did.

Some of the candidates, in fact, stayed or their representatives were in the spin zone telling the media what they didn’t hear. (interruption) No, you didn’t see any candidate fluff anything. No. You didn’t see my candidate botch that. Let me tell you what you missed. Here’s what happened. She had nobody in the spin zone. They just got out of there. In the inside baseball, ladies and gentlemen, it’s called “drop the mike.” I used to do it after every Rush to Excellence event.

You drop the mike; get out of there. There’s nothing left to do. Hit a home run! Drop the mike, turn the mike off, take it off, throw it on the floor, get out of there. That’s what she did. Dropped the mike. So she had to be feeling great today because she pulled off what she wanted to pull off. She had to… And you recall if you’ve been listening to this program with any regularity here for the past three to four months, today is not the first time I’ve touted Carly Fiorina.

I touted her after the first pregame meal debate, you know, where she didn’t make the main stage. I thought she had some brilliant answers in that debate, particularly when she was talking about, again, the character of the United States and how we’re losing that. She… I forget the exact quote. She said the Democrat Party is destroying the character of United States of America. So it was a great answer. She went back to that, when she linked Iran and Planned Parenthood in one answer.

She was versed on foreign affairs. She was versed on foreign policy. She was versed on domestic policy. She had a clear answer on what she would do the first day, first hour, what have you. I mean, it was impressive. (interruption) Yeah, she was versed on military stuff. But so are a lot of the others. You know, she wasn’t alone last night.


RUSH: No, no, no, no. There’s no question last night Carly Fiorina’s star shown brighter than anybody. There’s no question about it. But we’re nowhere near the end of this. There’s still much to happen here, and none of it predictable. So all in all, it was a good night for conservatism, provided those articulating it mean it, which is always what’s up for grabs.

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