The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

21 February 2008

Limbaugh's McCain - Media Predictions Come True


Over Media's McCain Treatment, His Words Prove Prophetic

Is Rush Limbaugh
psychic? As another one of his political predictions quickly comes to pass, talk's reigning titan is once again finding himself in the spotlight. But how the situation will ultimately play out is still a mystery.

After pegging the real motives behind the mainstream media's almost unanimous endorsement of McCain over his GOP primary rivals, his enemies are busy trying to discredit the newly- vindicated host.

Over the past several months, Limbaugh has maintained that liberal media support for McCain has been aimed at securing the nomination for someone they believe can be easily torn down later. With today's New York Times hit piece, which alleges a past affair between the Arizona senator and a lobbyist, Rush's prediction has come true perhaps earlier than he could have anticipated.

From his 25 January 2008 program:

RUSH: The New York Times, by the way, yesterday, hold onto your coffee cup or your steering wheel if you haven't heard this. After months of pondering, the New York Times announced its endorsements for the Democrats and Republicans, and here they are. There was no surprise who they endorsed for the Democrats, and there was not much surprise about who they endorsed for our side. They endorsed Hillary on the Democrat side and they endorsed McCain. So this is a serious, serious question. A serious number of liberal newspapers have endorsed John McCain.

I ask myself -- I'm not even asking you to think about this -- I'm thinking to myself here, and I happen to be verbalizing thoughts. What in the world am I supposed to think when liberal newspapers endorse McCain as the Republican, when I know for a fact they're not going to vote for him? When I know for a fact that when it comes to November, whenever they issue their final endorsements, they're going to endorse Hillary or whoever the Democrat is? So what is the game plan here? What is the gambit? What are these liberal papers trying to do? Are they trying to be consistent?

Well, if we're going to endorse a liberal Democrat on the Democrat side, how can we endorse this big-time conservative on the right? I don't understand it. Well, I do understand it, but I don't understand what they hope to accomplish. Well, I understand that, too. Sorry, I do know what they hope to accomplish. What I don't know is what Republican primary voters think of all this. They probably don't think too much about it because they don't care about the New York Times. Three newspapers here in Florida have endorsed McCain, one the Palm Beach Post. I forget the other two, Gainesville, maybe. Tallahassee was maybe the other one. There will be others. They're all liberal newspapers. When we get to November they're not going to endorse McCain.

Also from that particular program:

RUSH: But you have to know now that when you get down to November, the New York Times has a choice, let's say it is McCain, say McCain gets this nomination, and, of course, Hillary gets the nomination for the Democrats, and the New York Times is going to write an editorial endorsing who?

CALLER: Hillary.

RUSH: Right. So what is the value of their endorsement of any Republican? What is the value of anybody in the mainstream media's opinion of any Republican? We got all these stories yesterday, day before, criticizing Bill for being too mean to Barack and he's out there acting undignified and all this horrible stuff, it's all over the place, Democrat state officials. Gets to November, who are they going to vote for?

If Rush missed the mark in any way, it was in understating the severity of the Gray Lady's sleaze: what kind of newspaper endorses a candidate while in the middle of cooking up a potentially career- ending hit piece destined for its front page? If it seemed possible after so much past misbehavior, the New York Times may actually have reached a new low.

Otherwise, Limbaugh's January monologue is so on target it really does suggest psychic abilities, right down to naming the particular paper that would engage in these dirty tricks. But Rush's own position is that it's merely the media behaving as it always has, which he believes ought to teach McCain a lesson. From today's program:

RUSH: Would you give me a break? You're surprised that Page Six-type gossip is on the front page of the New York Times? Where have you been? How in the world can anybody be surprised at the New York Times? I cannot believe how everybody's missing this! I even have guys from The Politico, Jonathan Martin saying, "You got a reaction?" I sent him a couple paragraphs, and it's being misinterpreted a bit. I guess I wasn't clear enough.


What have I always said that today is proven beyond a shadow of a doubt? It is this: If you let the media make you, you are subjecting yourself to the media being able to destroy you. Senator McCain -- the important thing about what has happened here in the New York Times, the only important thing to me -- I don't care what's in this story. The story is not the story. The story is that this paper endorsed McCain, sat on this story and now puts it out just prior to McCain wrapping up the nomination.

And McCain says he's disappointed. Why? Why is anybody disappointed or surprised but this? They are who they are. A snake is a snake. A tiger is a tiger. The New York Times is the New York Times. Folks, if you expect me to be angry about the story and angry at the New York Times, you have tuned to the wrong radio show. I refuse to get mad when something I have predicted is going to happen, happens. I refuse to get mad when something I know is true, is true. It's a total waste of energy.

While post- publication reaction (particularly from the mainstream media) has focused on how the story may finally motivate conservatives to support McCain's campaign, what has instead occurred is a complete vindication of Limbaugh.

Remember the heat he took from the MSM and liberal Republicans for refusing to back McCain? If even a shred of it proves (or appears) true (despite the protestations of McCain, his wife and the lobbyist in question), today's NYT hit piece makes it clear that despite his long tenure in elective office, the Arizona senator wasn't as well- vetted as blue- blooded supporters would have us believe. Rush's doubts have proven well- founded.

Their angry instance that Rush support McCain for the "good of the party" has already been proven wrong and could look even more foolish if subsequent allegations emerge.

Some liberal media elitists may have already figured this out and have been looking for new ways to discredit him. On MSNBC, Chris Matthews today wasted no time declaring him "irrelevant". ABC, meanwhile, accused Rush and fellow talker Laura Ingraham of "attacking" the poor, defenseless New York Times.

The left- leaning Radar took it even further, claiming "John McCain's right-wing machine is fired up and purring," with the same Limbaugh / Ingraham focus. And the "progressives" at Think Progress twisted it into "Limbaugh Spins NYT Story As Hate Radio Victory".

In addition, media foes aren't interested in uniting the right, which explains why they are pushing the idea that McCain's "honor and integrity" campaign has been permanently damaged.

Though Limbaugh today insisted the story's details were not important, that the real issue was McCain's naïve belief that the mainstream media was his friend, there is the chance that the affair allegations could stick. Since the press isn't likely to let the story go away (or criticize the NYT), especially since the Washington Post has joined the party, this remains possible.

If so, his campaign may yet sink (though one consultant believes it will quickly blow over). If there was any doubt about the NYT's partisan leanings, they were put to rest for good today. In particular, the timing of the story was perfect for Democrats, coming just as McCain had locked up the GOP nomination.

If McCain truly learns from this experience, the pundits may have it backwards: perhaps he will join with conservatives, instead of spending so much time and energy fighting the movement.

Can a stubborn, 71- year- old man be taught a new trick? We will soon learn.

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  • Interesting..... to Rush's credit he did not try to dis-credit the story, after all if it is true what else can you say??? With more publications running with it, and McCain not demanding retraction, the story obviously has legs. Fake smear does not grow legs like this story is.

    If Limbaugh was fair, he would point out the phony McCain's lobbiiest ties as a reason why he is right in not supporting mcCain. Does Limbaugh have no problem with the possible bribery chgarges?

    Why are you assuming the story is a "hit piece". The issue is not the Sex, the issue is the lobbyists and how close he is to them. McCain ran the campaign on being a Mavrick and has repeatedly claimed he is not influenced by lobbyists, if even half of the story is true, it is relevant news, and not a
    "hit piece".

    The media is missing the big picture with the story and so is Limbaugh. The MSM turned this into a "sex scandal" it is a lobbiest and big money scandal and also a testament to the Straight talk express lack of straight talk

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 22 February, 2008 00:29  

  • "If Rush missed the mark in any way, it was in understating the severity of the Gray Lady's sleaze: what kind of newspaper endorses a candidate while in the middle of cooking up a potentially career- ending hit piece destined for its front page?"

    Brian: You once again fail to recognize the distinction between a newspaper's editorial board and its newsroom. They don't talk to each other -- on purpose. for a media "insider," you sure don't seem to know much about how media actually works. Editors don't get asked for input on endorsements, and editorial boards don't get asked to help report on stories.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 22 February, 2008 09:51  

  • It's not a hit piece if it's true.

    And part of McCain's denial has already been debunked... by a deposition McCain gave several years ago.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 22 February, 2008 15:08  

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