RUSH: Now, Ben Carson. What’s happening here with Ben Carson is exactly one of the things that I was hoping would happen to the rest of the field with Trump in the race. What Trump is doing is shining a light on how things can happen. How you don’t have to cave. You don’t have to be afraid. You can double down. You do not have to cave to the demands of political correctness. You can fight it.
Carson has apparently — I don’t want to say “learned the lesson,” but he’s seen the value in it. And I think Donald Trump’s no-apologies responses to all these ginned up media controversies are becoming contagious, at least as it relates to Dr. Carson. We have Dr. Carson refusing to apologize for what I thought were highly sensible remarks in which he said he would not advocate a devout Muslim who supports Sharia law to be president. I don’t even think it requires any defense. But, of course, in 2015 America it does because the forces of political correctness simply cannot comprehend a statement like that.
They immediately conclude that somebody that makes a statement like that, they are toast and they deserve to be toast. And Carson is standing his ground. He has this image of soft-spoken, certainly not steel-fisted tough, but he’s demonstrating that that is exactly what he is when necessary. And I think it’s an upper. I think it’s a positive. It’s an amazing phenomenon to actually see Republicans doubling down rather than apologizing, rather than backing off, rather than caving, rather than clarifying, rather than trying to do damage control.
Outside of Trump, we’re not seeing this kind of — you might say Huckabee on the Kim Davis case, you might say Huckabee, but we’re talking about here the upper tier of candidates. Oh, that’s another thing floating around out there. I’ve seen this two or three different places. It’s within not just the establishment of the Republican Party, but there are also some I guess what you would call conservatives who ascribe to it that the polls are dead wrong. The polls haven’t been right in a couple of cycles now, and Trump’s not leading at 24%, he’s nowhere near, never has been in the lead.
This is what people are thinking. This what some people are saying, can’t trust the polls, and it’s all gonna even out at some point, and it’s not at all in reality the way we think it is based on polls. Now, I don’t know why people resort to that. You know, I used to do that. I think some of these people now analyzing this are wrong. I remember the 2012 presidential campaign. I didn’t believe the polls. They had Romney losing by six. Romney losing by five. I said, “This can’t be true.” I said, “Look at the midterm turnout in 2010, look at that. How in the world can you ignore the 2010 turnout?”
When you’re polling for 2012, how can you ignore that turnout in your polling sample and only go back and get the same kind of sample you got in 2008? “The reason we do that, Mr. Limbaugh, we polling companies, is because midterm turnouts are totally different than presidential-year turn outs, and we can’t conflate the two, can’t start mixing the two together.” And I just looked at all the anecdotal evidence, and looked at all the stuff I was seeing on television. I was hearing negatives about Obama and I thought these polls that showed Romney losing by five points were dread wrong. Of course you had Dick Morris on TV basically making similar points. And then the old saw, I saw the exit polls starting at five o’clock, and I knew it was over.
So since then I have not discounted what polling data says. And some people are beginning to do that now in order to explain a Republican field that they don’t like. And I think it’s dangerous ground when you start running around saying the polls aren’t right, they never have been. Yes they have been right. They were right in 2012. It’s a mistake to tell yourself that the polls are wrong, universally wrong. Some of them are. But on balance 2012, that’s just the last presidential election, had it right on the money, and we’re all sitting here thinking they had it wrong.
So this theory goes on that Trump is nowhere near the lead and neither is Fiorina. These are just momentary snapshots and that what really is gonna end up happening here, it’s going to end up being a race between establishment candidates and one conservative candidate, unnamed. The conservative candidate has of yet to be analyzed or identified in this theory. One of the theories holds that it’s gonna be Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz is at 7% right now, so you must really believe the polls are wrong, dramatically wrong, if you believe at the end of this process it’s gonna be Cruz. I would not be upset with it, do not misunderstand anything here.
But back to Dr. Carson. Dr. Carson, in his soft-spoken way, is proving to be a man of steel, and it really is a pleasure to see this. I know that it will never happen, but someone in the Drive-By Media ought to start asking all of these Democrat candidates whether they would support a candidate who believes in Sharia law over the US Constitution. Put the onus back on them. All this is, is another attempt, just like yesterday, to embarrass another Republican, to expose another Republican as a bigot or whatever.
By the way, this that’s happening is why so many people got so upset at the first presidential debate and the questions being asked. It’s why people said, “My God, it sounds just like the questions the liberal media asks.” So Dr. Carson says what he says, it was perfectly clear, “Are you also as bigoted as Dr. Carson? Do you also discriminate against Muslims?” and that’s what the effort is, and yet the same question would not even be asked of Democrat candidates. Could you support a devout Muslim candidate who puts Sharia law over the US Constitution? They should also ask the Democrats if they’re okay with a president who believes in Sharia law? Are they comfortable with having a majority in Congress who believe in Sharia law?
Let’s not stop at the White House. If we’re gonna start talking about whether or not we should have a Muslim president, let’s explain what that is, and let’s include Sharia law in it, and let’s ask if we want a Sharia law majority in the House or in the Senate, and if not, why not. Ask the Democrats these questions. Now, the media isn’t gonna do that. So somehow our people have to find a way to reverse this and turn it around on these people. I would even be throwing it right back at the media just trying to make hay out of this.
The thing is, if the Democrats thought it might get them more voters, lunatic fringe, who knows what they would stand for. I think that’s the bottom line for Democrats.
Isn’t it demonstrably true now that the Democrats don’t care, as long as they can get the majority of votes, they don’t care how they do it, and they don’t care what becomes of the country in the process. The bottom line question is this. Is Sharia law consistent with the United States Constitution? Now, of course it isn’t. But that is the bottom line question. Sharia law is not even consistent with the First Amendment. You cannot have both side by side. Something has to give.
If you have someone who believes in the superiority or the prominence of Sharia law, then it’s bye-bye First Amendment, bye-bye Bill of Rights, the Constitution doesn’t matter, either. That’s the way this needs to be framed, and that is why Dr. Carson said what he said. He’s obviously a tough guy. He didn’t back off his comments to Obama about Obamacare, either.
The thing that happened that put him on the map, he’s at the National Prayer Breakfast, and he openly tells Obama what he thinks of Obamacare and how he would fix it, and here came the double barrel shots from the Drive-By Media and the White House, and he didn’t back down from that, either. Even after he was audited, they audited him after that. The IRS did. And he hasn’t backed down to any of it. So don’t be fooled by any of this soft-spokenness.
RUSH: We’ll start here with media incredulity over Ben Carson not being harmed by his comments that he would not support a Sharia law Muslim for president of the United States. The media thought, and they still believe, that when any Republican says anything like this, that they could take ’em out, wipe ’em out, destroy them, certainly destroy their campaign. If they’re lucky, they can destroy their political future, and if they really hit the grand slam, they can destroy their life. And they really thought, they really believed that Ben Carson stepped in it so bad that it was over for him. All they had to do was spread the news.
It turns out that all immediate measurements — Twitter, Facebook, flash overnight Internet polls — show Ben Carson increasing his popularity after the comment. And once again, it’s rooted in the Drive-By Media. See, I don’t know if they know this or if they’re deluded. I don’t know if they really think that their brand of thinking is the majority of thought in the country or not. They act like it’s the majority of thought. It’s a technique. The Drive-Bys, when they report any outrage over anything a conservative or Republican does, they act like the whole country is also outraged, not just a part, the whole country, that conservatives are maybe 1% of the population.
And then they find out that they’re nowhere near correct in that assessment. So I wonder if they know it and are just delusional, or if they realize it and are using this as a tactic and technique to make it look like they’re the majority when they know full well they’re not. In the end, I guess it doesn’t matter, but here’s an example. Alisyn Camerota — it’s on CNN’s “New Day” today — reporting on Carson’s support, increased support since his remarks that he would not support a Sharia law devout Muslim for president.
CAMEROTA: Ben Carson. Since he made his comments about he would never support a Muslim for president, his fundraising has gone up, he’s gotten more dollars, and his Facebook followers, his social media people, it’s not just like it’s gone viral, it’s like he’s gotten more support, more likes, more followers. It’s working.
RUSH: Can’t believe it. He’s got more support, got more likes, got more followers, it’s working. And here is Tom Llamas, who is the ABC Good Morning America correspondent talking about all of this.
LLAMAS: Dr. Ben Carson says his comments were not that controversial. The reason why? Right after he said them on Sunday morning his Facebook page went up by more than 100,000 likes. George?
STEPHANOPOULOS: It’s one piece of evidence.
RUSH: Yeah, one piece evidence. We’re not gonna put any stock in that. Hundred thousand likes on Facebook, screw that, that’s just a bunch of chump change. That’s one piece of evidence. But we’re still not buying it. Stephanopoulos, of course, continuing in his role as a Democrat candidate political operative disguised as a journalist over at ABC. Here’s Dr. Carson himself in Sharonville, Ohio, press conference. During the Q&A, a reporter said, “You said that you would support a moderate Muslim candidate. Would that also apply to a Mormon?”
CARSON: I said I would support anyone. Again, it seems to be hard for people to actually hear English and understand it. I said I would support anyone regardless of their background if in fact they embrace American values and our Constitution and are willing to place that above their beliefs.
RUSH: Hey, folks, this is not weird or odd. I mentioned this yesterday. How many of you people remember the countless times Democrats and members of the media have spoken out against the idea that we might elect an evangelical Christian as president? We can’t have that. We can’t have those kinds of people in the White House. Those people get in the White House and start imposing their religious views on everybody. We can’t have that. I mean, it was a constant refrain in the seventies and eighties.
Hell, even the early parts of the nineties, Pat Robertson, somebody else with close ties to evangelical Christians would seek office, doesn’t matter if it’s the presidency, and here would come the media, here would come the Democrat Party, “We can’t have theocrats in office. We can’t have deeply devout, religious people. Why, that would be untenable.” But now, as long as it’s not Christians, any other religion, fine and dandy. Want to elect a Muslim president, damn straight, fine and dandy, we’re an open-ended, open-minded society. Keep the Christians outta here, but a Muslim, fine and dandy.
People have forgotten the bigotry and discrimination that was on parade constantly from the Democrat Party and the media. I have to take a break here the bottom of the hour. There isn’t enough time to get the next Dr. Carson sound bite in. We’ve got this and actually three more from last night and today as Carson addresses this.
RUSH: Back to the Dr. Carson sound bites. This morning Sharonville, Ohio, at a press conference, Q&A, another reporter (imitating reporter), “Dr. Carson, Dr. Carson, this is something that is now defining your campaign. People are seeing you as being anti-Muslim with your statements. How do you fix that? How do you come back from this perception that we are trying to destroy you?”
CARSON: The only way we fix that is fix the PC culture in our country, which only can listen to one narrative, and if it doesn’t fit their philosophy, then they have to try to ascribe some motive to it to make it fit. The PC culture says whenever, you know, you’re asked a question, it has to be answered in a certain way, and if you don’t answer it that way, then, you know, let’s attack and let’s not try to actually understand what a person’s saying. Let’s just attack, attack, attack. And hopefully everybody else will look at that, and they will realize they’re never supposed to say something like that again. That’s what the PC culture is.
RUSH: Okay, now, that took him 43 seconds. Dr. Carson doesn’t speak in sound bites. That’s another one of the differences in his candidacy and others. Professional politicians just learn it over time, sound bites are the name of the game. You’ve gotta be able to say something pithy, even if it may represent your views or it may not, but in order to stand out and get noticed you gotta be able to say something. You can’t shout to get noticed. I mean, you got a debate stage, 11 people up there, shouting would not get you noticed. It’s what you say.
I mean, even if the moderators don’t come to you, you know, they’re giving other candidates far more time than they’re giving you, what do you do in that circumstance? Well, when they do come to you, you have to make it count. And Dr. Carson is used to long, detailed, almost stream-of-consciousness explanations and answers to questions. What you just heard here was him attempting to define political correctness for this reporter, who knows damn well what it is.
“Dr. Carson, this is something that’s now defining your campaign. People are seeing you as being anti-Muslim.” No, they’re not. They’re seeing the media trying to portray him as anti-Muslim. It’s a big difference. “How do you fix that, how do you fix what we are doing to you, Dr. Carson?” The real question, “How do you stop us from ruining you, Dr. Carson?”
That’s what the question really is. “Dr. Carson, how are you gonna stop us from mischaracterizing what you’re saying, hmm? How do you come back from this perception that we’ve created about you, that you’re a bigot?” And his answer was an attempt to explain how we fix the PC culture. He went on to try to define it. Now, last night he shows up on Fox News with Hannity, and he was asked if he stands by the comments that he made originally.
CARSON: Absolutely I stand by the comments. You know, what we have to do is we have to recognize that this is America, and we have a Constitution, and we do not put people at the leadership of our country whose faith might interfere with them carrying out the duties of the Constitution. So if, for instance, you believe in a theocracy, I don’t care if you’re a Christian, if you’re a Christian, and you’re running for president, and you want to make this into a theocracy, I’m not gonna support you. I’m not gonna advocate you being the president.
RUSH: That’s what he said originally. This is the clarification, explanation, definition of what he said. Shouldn’t be necessary but the media made it necessary. They knew what he was saying. Everybody did. They just tried to pigeonhole him. You know, it’s open season on Republicans and taking them out, and you get them as you can, and they think that Carson stepped in it and gave them a huge target, but he’s standing by his guns.
That’s what I mean, he’s doubling down. He is not backing off of this at all. He’s not doing the usual Republican thing of asking for forgiveness, a chance to rephrase it. “That isn’t me. I heard myself say that, and the minute I was saying it, you know, I realized that wasn’t me.” That’s what usually happens, but he’s doubling down on it and further explaining what he means.
So the next question. “I spoke with Dr. Zuhdi Jasser today, he’s a moderate Muslim, and I asked him if he could name a single Muslim country that treats women the way we treat minorities in this country. He couldn’t name a single one. Was that what you were thinking in your mind when you were answering the question, in other words, the way Muslim theocracies currently operate?”
CARSON: That’s correct. They currently do not tend to operate the same way that our system does. Now, if someone has a Muslim background and they’re willing to reject those tenets and accept the way of life that we have and clearly will swear to place our Constitution above their religion, then of course they will be considered infidels and heretics, but at least I would then be quite willing to support them.
RUSH: Well, you’d have another question you’d have to ask. Okay, let’s take a scenario, you’ve got a devout Muslim who comes along and wants to be elected president or to high federal office, is gonna take an oath of office to defend and protect the Constitution and therefore swears to subordinate Sharia law to the US Constitution, do you believe them? It becomes then an article of faith. It’s a toughie. I think all this is absurd, folks.
You know, I told you at the beginning of the program I’m getting up today, going through show prep, Stack after Stack, piece of paper, don’t care, don’t care. One of the reasons I don’t care, I can’t believe we’re talking about half the stuff we’re talking about. This is just absurd that this is an issue. It’s absurd that it’s even a question. I mean, we’re behaving as though 9/11 didn’t happen. 9/11 did happen, 3,000 Americans are dead, and what, we’re gonna make an excuse now, that, well, you can’t base anything on that? Really? I just find it all absurd.
It’s approaching the point here of futility to me, but at least Dr. Carson stood his ground and is not backing down and is picking up support in the process. And let’s not forget where all of this anti-Muslim rhetoric actually began, as far as it relates to Obama.
The Republican Party is not responsible for this one, either. It was Hillary Clinton in the 2007 Democrat primary campaign that actually started questioning whether or not Obama’s a Muslim. And then she was asked about it some years later, Steve Kroft (paraphrasing), “You seriously don’t think the president is a Muslim?”
“Well, no, not as far as I know, no, I don’t.” Somehow Mrs. Clinton’s escaping any culpability or any attachment. In fact, it came up last night on CNN, The Lead with Jake Tapper speaking with Dana Bash, the chief political correspondent. Tapper said, “Donald Trump reminds us that some of these Obama’s-a-Muslim rumors were started by people who were supporting or working for Hillary, all the way back in 2008.”
BASH: There were some stories citing Clinton researchers or associates back then saying that President Obama or then Barack Obama was a Muslim, even that he went to a Madrasah, which is a Muslim school when he was a kid living in Indonesia. I remember when CNN’s John Vause went to Jakarta to investigate that, and it turns out the school never had any religious curriculum, but even Hillary Clinton herself sowed some doubt back in 2008 during a 60 Minutes interview saying she didn’t think Obama was a Muslim then, but she added, “Not that I know of.”
RUSH: It’s even worse than that, what Mrs. Clinton was doing. She’s the one that raised it. That’s why she was asked about it. She was the one that was talking about it, she’s the one that raised it. The Democrat primary campaign in 2007 was particularly vicious. People don’t remember it now because they papered it over and made Hillary secretary of state, but it was particularly vicious with charges of the race card being thrown around. Bill Clinton was out there having a drink, an adult beverage with Ted Kennedy, and Clinton is on record as having said to Ted Kennedy (imitating Clinton), “You know, you know, Ted, this guy, Obama, back in day this guy’d be the guy getting our coffee for us, Ted, you know it and I know it.”
Well, Obama hears about that, starts throwing the race card around, as Clinton’s campaigning in South Carolina. It was vicious. All this Muslim stuff. And then it was the Democrats that came up with this whole “Magic Negro” thing, talking about whether or not Obama was an authentic American, African-American and so forth. And yet here we are, it’s always the Republicans that somehow get tarred and feathered with this stuff when it’s patently absurd.