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December 21, 2007

Limbaugh On Huckabee: "McCain's Starting To Look Better Than This Guy, And That's Saying Something"

It's on. Now, actually. (Whoops, he's moved on, but he's returning to it occasionally... now he's likening Huckabee to Howard Dean, prompted by a caller.)

From Limbaugh's lips to Geraghty's fingertips to your eyes.

Another quote:

"The Huckabee campaign is trying to dumb down conservatism in order to get it to conform with his record."

This isn't the first time he's gone after the Huckster. Someone sent me this earlier transcript in which he likens Huckabee's supporters to Perot's hoodwinked, bamboozled supporters, and, in addition, implies they're "cultists" like the Peroistas while saying "I'm not saying his supporters are cultists."

I don't think he is saying that, not really. But he seems frustrated at Huckabee's supporters' apparent reluctance to examine the guy's record.

He explains why he's not taking many shots at Huckabee:

So Huckabee writes this piece basically savaging the Bush administration's "arrogant bunker mentality." Now, one thing I know, I remember back in the '92 campaign, Ross Perot came along, and I had my instincts. I had misgivings about it from the get-go, and I shared those misgivings, and I tried to talk the Perot people out of it. "You people are being fooled. He's not even serious about wanting to be elected. There's something else going on here. I'm going to get to the bottom of it and find out." I found out what it was. When it looked like he was going to win, he pulled out, then he got back in. He basically gave the election to the Democrats and Bill Clinton. But what I remember is that all during that period -- when I was so intense and so purposefully desirous of trying to get the Perot people to see the light -- they didn't want to see it. They were like cultists, and I learned that you cannot talk cultists out of their cult. You just have to let 'em see it for themselves in the time it takes for it all to unfold, and I think with Huckabee, I don't think his people are cultists, don't misunderstand.

CALLER: Right.

RUSH: But I think there are two or three things about him that have drawn people to him, that are going to make them overlook some other things that ought to raise some red flags.

...

RUSH: My only point to you is that -- and I'm not going to repeat what I did with Perot, because it's not going to work. The only thing I'll say to you is, "I think if you dug deep, you would find..." Well, you admitted it. You think Huckabee is "moving to the middle," because he's moving to the middle, he's abandoning what? The right. He'll stick solid on certain things on the right because he knows that he is attracting a portion of the population based on religious and moral and ethical values, which is fine, but on some of these other areas that also define conservatism like taxes and so forth, he doesn't have the pedigree. But I'm not going to try to talk you out of it. No, I don't even think about it. I'm not trying to talk you out of it. I'm not attacking you because I know you can't, because you called here and you think he's the one true conservative out there because of the things that matter a lot to you, he's right on the money on them. So we'll see what unfolds in the few short weeks ahead to when we finally get nominees for both parties. In the meantime, Charlie, thanks for the call.

I sort of have misgivings about bashing Huckabee, too, because I think those who like him may be a bit defensive about it and feel personally attacked when they're candidate is attacked. I did wonder if it wouldn't be better to just not cover him at all and hope, as Limbaugh says, his supporters would dig a little deeper. Perhaps they just need to be allowed to discover it on their own. When the "establishment and Washington chattering classes" are trying to ram something down your throat, it's natural enough to get very resistant and dig your heels in, I guess.

Still, whatever, this guy sucks ass. He's bad for the party, bad for evangelicals, and bad for the few issues he's conservative on, because last time I checked the guy who only gets 34% of the vote in the presidential election usually doesn't get to appoint justices to the Supreme Court.

And I'm glad Limbaugh is being a little more proactive in noting that.

Thanks to JeffD. for the Geraghty tip and, I think, CJ for the longer transcript.

It's All Huckabee On Open Line Friday: Latest quote (approximately): "Hucakbee is running on identity politics, and that identity is as a Christian. That lets his supporters project on to him whatever they define as being 'Christian conservative,' but on most issues he isn't a conservative."

When a pastor calls up to claim "Huckabee is the light at the end of the tunnel," Limbaugh says, "That light at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming train and you can't get off the tracks."


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posted by Ace at 02:08 PM

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