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RUSH: Again, if you’re just joining us here, it is apparent, well, it’s not apparent. It’s abundantly clear that the Republican establishment, all these reports we’ve had prior to today about them being in panic have not even gotten close to reality. The panic is real today. They are acting as though their own very future is at stake today. And they have decided that the future of the Republican Party, as you know it and love it, hangs on what happens in Ohio. Meaning John Kasich, in their view, had better win this thing.

Now, keep in mind Kasich doesn’t have a prayer of becoming the nominee. He doesn’t have a prayer. If John Kasich thinks he’s gonna become the nominee in a contested convention, he’s got another thing coming. If it gets to that point, can I tell you who I think they’re gonna make president, or make the nominee, if all this happens, as they want it to? Remember, now, we’ve got a guy on the Republican committee, convention committee rules committee writing today in The Daily Caller that first ballot delegates are not bound to vote for the candidate that won their state’s primaries.

Everybody’s thinking that that’s the rule, that on the first ballot, that’s why primaries matter, that’s why this matter of 1,237 delegates matters. Whoever gets there is automatically the nominee. This guy writes a piece today saying, no, no, no, no. That that that that’s not the case. Delegates can vote whoever they want, on any ballot. Oh, really? He says ’76 is the only time this was actually put into — ’76, yeah, that’s when they denied Reagan. So I’m just telling you, if they succeed in this, if they sucked in denying Trump or Ted Cruz 1,237 delegates by the end of the primary process, I’m here to tell you Jeb Bush is gonna be the nominee. That’s what they’re gonna do. That’s what they’ve always wanted.

And Jeb himself said back on December 14th of 2014 when this whole process started Jeb said that his strategy was to lose the primaries and win the nomination. And everybody said, “What? How you gonna do that?” And the answer we got, money. He’s gonna outspend everybody. He’s gonna whittle the field. He’s gonna show the rest of the field they can’t compete with him financially. He’s gonna split the conservative vote by having all these conservatives in the race, they’re not gonna have a prayer, and Jeb’s gonna be the coalition favorite. He’s gonna have all the money, and that’s that.

And what they meant was Jeb’s gonna win the nomination without having to kowtow to Republican Tea Party base voters, meaning Jeb’s not gonna have to talk about abortion. Jeb’s not gonna have to talk about immigration. Jeb’s not gonna have to talk about any of these things that matter. He’s gonna win the nomination nevertheless. And it may well yet happen. If not Jeb, they’ll go Romney. But if Kasich thinks it’s gonna be him — and I don’t doubt that he does. That’s why he wants to win Ohio and stay in. And now there’s talk that Rubio will stay in even if he loses Florida. And Rubio and Kasich have both said that they are rethinking their pledge to support the nominee, that came as recently as a week ago.

Isn’t that why Trump has supporters in the first place, because so many Republicans make promises and then break them? So the fur is flying, and the establishment’s making one last gasp here. Well, it won’t be the last. Speaking of Rubio, Rubio said that there will be a reckoning for conservatives who support Trump. What does that mean? I don’t know what it means. There will be a reckoning for conservatives who support Trump? No, no. What he’s talking about here is they’re taking names, and if you’re conservative and you supported Trump, something’s gonna happen to you some point down the road. You’re gonna get kicked out. You’re gonna be shamed or excommunicated from the party, who knows what. I’m just reporting to you what’s in the news here.

Meanwhile, while all this is going on, while it’s all going on, there’s a new poll out, and what is this poll? Is it YouGov? Trump’s now at 53% nationally. Reuters has him at 45. But this is 53% nationally among potential Republican primary voters for the first time, Trump is at 53%. Why does that matter? ‘Cause primaries don’t go on national votes, obviously. I’ll tell you why it matters, and it’s ’cause of what Carly Fiorina’s out there saying. If any of the anti-Trumpsters start bashing Trump voters, which is starting to happen, by the way. National Review Online, a couple people there really tore into Trump voters. “You deserve to suffer. You deserve to be dead meat. You deserve having economic strife.” I mean, that’s the upshot. There are more details to it than that.

But the point is it started to happen. Trump voters are now being insulted and blamed, and Carly Fiorina said (imitating Fiorina), “Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah. Don’t do that. You’re gonna need these people at the end of this process if Trump’s not the nominee. You’re gonna need them voting for whoever the nominee is or you don’t have a prayer of beating Hillary.”


RUSH: Snerdley thinks that I’m wrong about something, and I could well be. In my scenario today — and look, this is gonna be the third time I’ve explained it, so bear me. I’ll make it really quick. The GOP is throwing every egg in its basket in Ohio today. They’re saying that the future of the party is in Ohio today. The future of the GOP hangs in Ohio. What that means is Kasich’s gotta win Ohio.

If Kasich wins Ohio, the establishment is still alive, and that way they can engineer a contested convention where they run, that they can then install whoever they want. And we’ve got a rules committee guy, got a piece in The Daily Caller today that says, hey, the way I read the rules, delegates are not bound to vote the way the states voted on the first ballot, meaning all this is nothing. The primary process at the end of the day means nothing if delegates on the first ballot can vote for whoever they want.

But the key to this is Kasich winning Ohio. Kasich wins Ohio, then the establishment thinks that they’ve got a pathway to deny Trump 1,237 or Cruz 1,237. And that’s the key. If they can go to the convention with nobody getting 1,237 — Snerdley thinks that it would not be Jeb Bush they’d throw it to. Snerdley thinks it’d be Paul Ryan. And, you know what, you may actually have a point. Speaker of the House, already a power. Jeb brings family ties, but I mean Ryan’s there. Ryan’s got ties to every lever that’s pushed and pulled in Washington to make things happen.

So, yeah, you may have a point, that that may be the ultimate objective is to get Paul Ryan, even though he’s out there, “I don’t want it, don’t anybody talk about it, don’t anybody say it.” Well, what else is he gonna say? Right? So you may have a point about that. But the key to this, Kasich wins Ohio. Now, they’re not just gonna give up and go away if that doesn’t happen. But if Kasich doesn’t win Ohio — he hasn’t won a state. He’s got 63 delegates.

But if he wins Ohio, I’m just gonna tell you what’s gonna happen. They’re gonna portray Kasich as the only guy in this race now. Ted Cruz is gonna become a nonfactor. I’m talking about the media. The media, the Republican Party, and everybody in the media sympathetic to the Republican establishment, which would be the entire media. John Kasich, where’s he been, John Kasich comes out of nowhere to save the Republican Party. I can hear and see the headlines now. Make no mistake about it.

Now, you might think it’s counterintuitive to say gotta vote Trump, hope Trump wins Ohio and Florida. The reason for that is, Kasich and Rubio have to go. They can’t win this thing. There is no way under the sun. And all they do is divide the anti-Trump vote, folks. So it has to get down to a two man race. It has to get down to Trump-Cruz if you want somebody to win this with 1,237 delegates. I don’t think any of you, other than maybe the excitement of it, want a contested convention. There may be some of you who are spectators only who would love to see Rome fall. (laughing) Well, that’s what Kasich is saying.

Kasich is saying it would be exciting to have a contested convention. And I heard Kasich saying there aren’t any smoke-filled rooms. Have you seen any smoke-filled rooms? When’s the last time you’re in a convention? I’ve been there. I’ve been in conventions before you were born, Kasich. I was at a convention with Eisenhower, with Reagan, I was at convention with George Bush. There aren’t any smoke-filled rooms. They don’t allowing smoking anymore. So jeez. The smoke-filled room is a — what is it? Yeah, it’s a metaphor. Of course. Smoke-filled rooms is the guys that run the show getting sequestered somewhere in private and pulling the strings.


RUSH: Vernon, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, you’re next. Great to have you on the EIB Network. Hi.

CALLER: Hello, Rush.

RUSH: Hello.

CALLER: It’s an honor to speak with you.

RUSH: Thank you, sir, very much.

CALLER: It was kind of you to apologize for the long wait, but really it’s a pleasure to wait to speak with you.

RUSH: I appreciate that. I really do appreciate it more than you know.

CALLER: Look, if Donald Trump gets the 1,237 and he doesn’t get the nomination, then there’s gonna be hell to pay. But if he doesn’t get the 1,237, then anything goes — and it’s, like, okay. That’s part of the rules, and we gotta be okay with that.

RUSH: True, but it depends on how it happens. If there is…

CALLER: (crosstalk)

RUSH: No, no. No, no. This is crucial. If Trump, let’s say, gets to 1,200 — he’s 37 short — and they engineer a way to take it away from him, there’s gonna be hell to pay, because 1,200 minus 37? Yeah, the rule’s the rule, but the preference will have been expressed by the voters.

CALLER: Well, the preference will be —

RUSH: If they give it to somebody, they won’t give it to Cruz. If this happens you can forget about Trump or Cruz winning. They’re gonna give it to somebody who hasn’t gotten very many votes, or any. You wait. That’s what’s going to happen. If that happens, you get chaos.

CALLER: I agree, there will be chaos. But let’s say it either goes to a two-man race — it’s Trump or Cruz — or even if the four of them stay until the end. What’s the problem with, “Okay, Trump doesn’t get the votes the first go ’round. The Cruz people, the Rubio people, the Kasich people, they get together and say, ‘You know what? We are gonna agree on someone,'” and they go for Cruz or they go for Rubio. But they’ve all gotta agree on that, and then the second round —

RUSH: Yes. If the scenario you lay out happens, yeah, that would be fun. That would be cool. If the only contestants are people who’ve actually been in the primaries and actually have received votes, then everything’s fine and cool. You’re exactly right. But if at Mordor they decide to throw in somebody who has not been in the primaries (or who was in the primaries and barely showed up) — if they try to give it to Jeb, they try to give it to Paul Ryan, if they ask Mitt Romney to come in and then exert pressure on delegates to vote for their guy — then you’re going to have chaos.

That’s what they want to do. That’s why everybody’s upset about this. If it was, as you spell it out, “Nobody gets to 1,237. We go to the convention. On the first ballot, everybody votes the way they’re supposed to. After that, the horse trading begins. Yeah, baby! That can be fun.” I think in that scenario, the establishment knows that Trump probably has more to offer these delegates than anybody else does. They’re worried about that. That’s why they’re gonna move in there and try to exert their pressure. But, Vernon, don’t doubt me.

That occasion that you describe, the establishment is praying for it. That’s what Kasich winning Ohio stands for. It’s what it represents. And they do not want to do that. They’re gonna cause a walk. Whatever happens, however this happens, folks, the odds are after this is all over the Republican Party is not going to look like it looks today. It’s gonna be reconstituted somehow. It’s possible, by the way, that all of this is just a bunch of smoke and mirrors.

It’s possible that the party’s gonna unified behind the biggest vote-getter and realize once we get to Cleveland, “Hey, you know what? We’re not the problem. Hillary Clinton and the Democrats are the problem. We’re gonna unify, and we’re gonna rally behind our nominee,” like they usually do. That could happen, too. For that to happen, they would have to throw off all this stuff they think about Trump or they would have to get behind Ted Cruz.

And we know they don’t like either one of those two at the establishment. In fact, they may like Cruz less ’cause he poses a bigger threat because he’s, in their view, inflexible. He has his core beliefs, he has his principles, and he’s not gonna be intimidated out of them, they’re so tightly held. “But Trump? Who knows what he believes. Make the right deal and he’ll do anything.” That’s what they think. So it’s worth keeping an eye on.

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