Where Was This Love for George H.W. Bush When He Was President?

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RUSH: Man, oh, man, I’m watching all of this praise for George H. W. Bush. It’s unbelievable! I can’t help but wonder, where was all this when he was president? All of this love, all this admiration, all of this praise, all of this devotion. What a great guy. What he meant to civility. Where was all this? ‘Cause I’m telling you, it wasn’t there.

And I’m gonna have more audio sound bites today as the program unfolds to demonstrate it. They never covered this man this way when he was alive. They never covered this man this way when he was president of the United States. And we know what they did to his son.

They literally tried to destroy the presidency of George W. Bush just like they’re trying to destroy the presidency of Donald Trump. They even came up with a false rumor. They said that George H. W. Bush had an affair with one of his secretaries. Do you remember this? It was totally untrue. It was during the campaign. It was a massive smear and it was right there in the Drive-By Media.

And this is one of the few times that I saw the Bush family rise up in indignation to stop and oppose this. I mean, when Bush was running for office, there was none of this. There was none of this respect. There was none of this admiration. There was none of this, “Oh, my God. What a great guy, what he means for civility.” They never talked about the contributions to civility that George H. W. Bush made while he was — I’m not kidding, folks. Where was all this?

If this man was this great on reflection, then why wasn’t he covered this way? The reason he’s being covered this way now is because he’s gone. That’s what you have to do to get respected and to be revered by the Drive-By Media, leave, however you do it. Once you’re no longer a factor, that’s when we’ll praise the hilt out of you.

On one hand — and I would be remiss not to admit this — on one hand, it’s nice to see. But, on the other hand, it’s so phony. And it’s so omnipresent that I can’t help but make the observation. I mean, the Drive-By Media is still churning out articles that bemoan the difference between the golden age of civility under George H. W. Bush compared to the nightmare they claim we’re suddenly experiencing under Trump.

Wait a minute. Are you telling me that they’re saying the last time we had any kind of civility was back during George H. W. Bush? What about Obama? I thought Obama was the architect of civility. I mean, they loved Obama. They didn’t think Obama was divisive. They covered Obama the way they’re covering George H. W. Bush, but somehow we have to go all the way back to Bush to find when Washington was civil? What did Bush do that they liked? He lost in 1992.

And even Paul Ryan yesterday, during the ceremonies in the Capitol rotunda where the former president is lying in state, Paul Ryan said what he learned — did you hear this? — what he learned from George H. W. Bush was how to lose. I’ve got the audio sound bite here, and I’ve got ’em separated into stacks. Let me see if I can find this here. Grab sound bite number 16. This is how the Washington establishment likes their Republicans. If you’re Republican, if you’re going to Washington, this should be a guiding lesson for you.

RYAN: He was the first president I had the chance to vote for. And he was the first president to teach me and many of us living in a democracy, sometimes you fall short and that how you handle that, that is just as important as how you win.

RUSH: So he taught me how to lose. I mean, that’s what that means. I also saw George P. Bush, grandson, on CNN today. And he was telling the story of Election Day 1992 in the White House, President Bush called him into his office, “Hey, George P., come on in here, Son.” And George P.’s story was that George H. W. Bush was telling them that, “We’re not gonna make it tonight, Son. We’re gonna come up short.” Meaning, we’re gonna lose reelection. And he was writing notes. George H. W. Bush was writing personal notes to all the people who had worked so hard for him.

And that was the story from George P. Bush, that even in the throes of losing, even in the throes of defeat, President Bush was still reaching out to those who — by the way, that aspect is true; don’t misunderstand. It dovetails with the Paul Ryan. Now, Ryan said much more than this. But I just thought it is newsworthy, if you put everything in context here, the Drive-Bys still write all these articles bemoaning the difference, the golden age — there wasn’t any golden age of civility! This is my point.

My friends, this program started in 1988, August of 1988, right smack-dab in the middle of the 1988 presidential campaign. And I remember what they did to Bush in that campaign. He was down at one point 18 to 20 points to Dukakis. And then the Willie Horton ad comes up, and George Bush didn’t run that ad, had nothing to do with it. Floyd Brown put that ad together.

The original Willie Horton ad didn’t even have a picture of Willie Horton in it. It didn’t mention race whatsoever, but they tried to tie Bush to the ad and claim that he was racist, and this is typical of the Republicans who hate black people. I mean, this is the stuff they were saying about the guy in the ’88 presidential campaign!

They made fun of him for being an out-of-touch elitist. He didn’t know what a supermarket scanner was. I’m sure you’ve heard that story over and over by now. And that was totally manufactured and made up by the New York Times. He did know what a supermarket scanner was.

The details of that story, by the way, if you want to know, the manufacturers of the scanner that Bush was having demonstrated told him that the latest innovation, you could rip up your receipt, you could rip up this or that and our scanner would still recognize it. That’s what Bush was marveling at, not the fact that were scanners out there. He knew there were scanners, but the media, led by the New York Times, tried to portray him as so elite and aloof and out of touch, he had no idea how real people lived.

They gave him grief for driving his cigarette boat during the Gulf War. They gave him grief for playing golf. They gave him grief for recreating too much. They accused him of blood for oil. They accused him of trying to personally profit in the oil business going into Kuwait to kick Saddam out, just like they did of his son. And just like they did Dick Cheney. Remember Halliburton, Dick Cheney only went into Iraq and tried to install his buddies to run Iraq because Cheney personally with his buddies at Halliburton wanted the oil.

Same thing with George H. W. Bush during the first Gulf War and all during the campaign. So I watch this stuff. I literally marvel at it, at the utter hypocrisy. And then you have to ask, why? What is the purpose? And, of course, the purpose is the ongoing and never-ending comparison to Donald Trump.

Look at this. The AP (the Ass-sociated Press) has an article this morning. “GOP Laments Bush’s Death as End of ‘a Culture of Civility.'” The GOP, the Republican Party is out there lamenting the death of Bush because the Republican Party knows that this is the end of civility, and this article says at one point, “he nation’s 41st and 45th presidents shared little in personality or worldview. And beyond personality, the conflicting presidencies underscore just how little remains today of the Grand Old Party that Bush once led.

“Trump’s GOP has undercut long-cherished Republican pillars of free trade, federal spending and environmental protection.” Can I translate this for you? It means (translated), “Bush was a globalist and Trump is a nationalist! Trump is putting America first, and Bush realized there had to be a New World Order with the United States and a big, long table with other nations at the U.N.” Trump has undercut pillars of free trade? He’s rebuilding it, for crying out loud! Not only is he rebuilding it, he’s retitling and renaming it as “fair trade.”

Federal spending? Would somebody tell me when it’s ever gone down? Which party is known for cutting federal spending? (interruption) Well… (interruption) No, no, no. The Republicans never did it, really. They talked about it. Democrats just never talked about it. Republicans always… It was a pillar, and the Republican House in 1994 did balance the budget one year and did create a surplus, and what’d Democrats say we needed to do with it? “We need to get rid of the defense department now! We need to get rid of defense. We need to get rid of all…”

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RUSH: Another question: Civility. We long for the days when we return to civility, right? That’s what we see we have lost now with the death of George H. W. Bush. But the media never treated George H. W. Bush with civility. They never said these wonderful, glowing things about him when he was alive, when he was a candidate, when he was president. In fact, why did this very same media — some of the very same people who were in the media back in 1988 to ’92 and beyond and are in it today. Why did they back a serial sex abuser over the saint of today, George H. W. Bush, when he ran for reelection? Hmm? If civility was so important, was such a big thing, why’d they back the serial sex abuser and then defend the guy for the next eight years, hmm?

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RUSH: By the way, ladies and gentlemen, in another recent example of dignity and civility, the dignified and very civil Patti Davis has written an op-ed in the Washington Post that praised George H. W. Bush for his dignity and compassion. Claimed he never attacked anybody, never said anything negative about anybody, and then castigated Trump for the loss of the presidency’s dignity.

Look, I don’t know, this woman spent so much time attacking her own father when he was president and afterwards. And so did her brother, Ronaldus Magnus’ son! I don’t know if she hated her dad or not. No idea. I don’t know her. But she didn’t accept his name. Blasted her father the entire time he was in the White House, even after he left the White House.

And in her most recent example of dignity and civility, Patti Davis has attacked Trump’s response to the synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh. She told CNN Trump lacks the compassion to comfort the nation, that he doesn’t know how to do it. She’s channeling the late Peter Jennings of ABC News who said the same thing about George W. Bush! That he didn’t know to reach the nation after 9/11.

Isn’t it interesting how no Republican president knows how to do anything until they die, and then they become wonderful? So Trump doesn’t have the dignity, the empathy, he doesn’t care enough about people to really convince anybody he does. And they said the same thing about George W. Bush after 9/11. Mocked him, made fun of him.

And so they can be as uncivil as they want. They can be as mean-spirited as they want on the left and in the media. They can be as extremist as they want, and then they get to hand out the labels, they get to sit in judgment of who’s civil and who isn’t? Who’s qualified and who isn’t? The death of George H. W. Bush is simply the latest platform example for the Drive-Bys and other leftists to continue assaulting Donald Trump.

And it’s not even limited to this. Slate.com even has a piece attacking Sully, the service dog. I kid you not. I forget the name of the woman who wrote the piece, is castigating anybody and everybody who thinks this dog has anything to do with the Bush family. The dog’s only been there six months. They’re using the dog. The Bushes are using the dog. The dog doesn’t even know what’s going on. The dog is being told to lay next to the casket, it’s what it does, and it’s gonna go back to Walter Reed and it’s gonna be assigned to another serviceman. The dog doesn’t know what’s happening. The dog is being used, and people are foolish if they are investing any emotion whatsoever in this dog.

Now, this is from our friends on the left who own the rights in their own mind to compassion and civility and dignity, being nice and open-minded and tolerant and accepting. And yet they’re so angry and so livid, they even have to spend time writing a piece denigrating a dog. The picture of Sully, named after the airline captain, by the way, that saved that U.S. Airways jet landing in the Hudson River.

Jim McGrath, what a great guy he is. He’s one of the Bush family spokesmen, George H. W. Bush spokesmen, he took a picture of Sully laying next to the casket, which everybody has seen down in Houston, and published the photo. And the left just hates it! They hate anything that humanizes Republicans or conservatives, except when they do it.

See, when they humanize George H. W. Bush, it serves a purpose, that is to demonize Donald Trump. “GOP Laments Bush’s Death as End of a Culture of Civility.” Well, I don’t understand this. Why do we have to go all the way back to 1992 to say that civility ended? What about Bill Clinton? What about Barack Obama? Barack Obama, how do you think Obama feels? All this talk about the lack and the end of civility, and he was president for eight years.

Don’t you think that the left would be crediting — ’cause that’s what they really thought he was, the epitome of sophistication, don’t you know. Sharpest crease in his slacks than anybody that had ever been in the White House, Barack Hussein O. The epitome of refinement, the epitome of good manners, the epitome of a great vocabulary, the epitome of somebody smarter than anybody else. Why is he not being credited with some civility in the White House? I mean, it didn’t all vanish with George H. W. Bush, is my point. Not in their world. Obama was more civil than Bush. They never criticized Obama.

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RUSH: Grab audio sound bite No. 25. George Mitchell. Now, I mentioned yesterday that — and I didn’t tell the story in detail because I’ve told it so many times. But I’m remembering things that I have not mentioned, so I may delve back into it. But it was in June of 1992 that I had the opportunity to have dinner with president and Mrs. Bush, 41, at the White House and then went to the Kennedy Center with them for a performance (I forget what the performance was) and went backstage at the intermission to meet the cast.

And then we split back to the White House where we went to the presidential study and chatted about the campaign for about an hour (maybe even longer than that) and then it was to the Lincoln Bedroom to spend the night. I then snuck out of there early the next morning to get back to New York to do the radio program. During that time in the study, after having returned from the Kennedy Center, I was in the presidential limo with them. I tell you, it’s amazing to be in that limo when they shut down traffic and there are no red lights and there are cops and Secret Service all over the place.

And you get where you’re going with nobody to stop you. It was unique to be part of that and see how that actually feels when you’re in the midst of it. But it was during this period of time that President Bush said that he liked Tom Foley, who at the time was a Democrat Speaker of the House. He was from Washington. He thought Foley was a guy you can work with. Foley was a decent guy, okay guy. Foley was later seen to be stealing airline meals off of flights that he took after he had retired.

You remember that, Mr. Snerdley? Busted stealing airplane meals! Anyway, when the name George Mitchell came up — George Mitchell was the Senate majority leader, Senator from Maine — President Bush told me, “He’s the most partisan man in Washington,” which surprised me. You know, I’d been doing the program for four years, and I knew who George Mitchell was, obviously. But George Mitchell, I then came to learn, was typecast. Every Senate Democrat majority leader, except maybe Chuck You Schumer…

Chuck You may be breaking the mold, but you stop and think of these people. (impression) “They’re all very soft-spoken, and they never raise their voices and get mad. Uh, like Tom Daschle. He followed George Mitchell, and Daschle would appear with Tony Snow on Fox, or over with Tim Russert on NBC, Meet the Press. And every time that Tom Daschle was on TV, he was concerned. (impression) ‘We are so concerned, Tim, about whatever the Republicans are proposing or doing, because it’s such a violation of human and civil rights.

“‘We’re very concerned, Tim. These Republicans, you know, they just… They don’t love people, and it’s really a problem. We’re really, really concerned, Tim,'” and Harry Reid comes along and he’s the same way. The guy spoke so softly, you could never hear him half the time. But they were vicious, vicious partisans — and that’s what Bush told me about George Mitchell. He said, “Don’t be fooled by him. He is the most partisan man in this town.” Now, the Drive-Bys would have you believe that George H. W. Bush never saw people that way.

“No, no! He was too civil. He was too sophisticated. He was too dignified from an era gone by.” Don’t kid yourself! He told me the reason Perot was trying to sabotage his presidential race. He’d give you lowdown on a lot of things. But I want to play for you a sound bite from George Mitchell from just moments ago on Bloomberg Television’s Balance of Power. You know who hosts this show? The former president of ABC News, David Westin. You got Mitchell on there with memoirs and memories about George H. W. Bush. Westin says, “What was it like working with President Bush?”

Listen to this…

MITCHELL: We had a very good working relationship. We got a lot done in a bipartisan way. I recall many instances. The Americans with Disabilities Act, huge budget act. But mostly I recall the Clean Air Act. President Reagan was adamantly opposed, as were many large industries. After President Bush took office, almost immediately he gave a speech saying that he favored clean air, reversing the policies of the Reagan administration. The times were different; the people were different. It seems quaint now.

RUSH: See? (impression) “We got things done, Tim. When we were concerned, we got things done because Bush abandoned Reaganism for bipartisanship — and that’s how things work in Washington, Tim. And when those things happen, we’re not concerned. See, when Republicans turn against themselves, that’s how we define bipartisanship.” There’s George Mitchell. Did you notice also that when Bush came in, “he favored clean air.” What? Reagan was opposed to it?

Oh, yeah, don’t you know?

Republicans don’t like clean air, and they don’t like clean water.

Republicans like Big Business who pollute the air and water.

By the way, folks, I know you think that’s a cliche, but I’m telling you, you would be stunned at the number of Millennials who believe exactly that. This is one of those categories where they say outrageous things and we say (laughing), “Nobody’s ever gonna believe that, that a whole political party is in favor of dirty water.” And yet you’d be stunned at the number of people, when they just hear the word “conservative” think, “Ah! You like dirty air! You like polluting! You’re opposed to climate change. You’re opposed to saving the earth.”

It’s what they think.

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RUSH: Now, I have not forgotten. I committed and I promised. Audio sound bites in the era here of all these people wringing their hands, “It’s so bad we lost George W. Bush because that’s the end of civility, the end of sophistication. It’s so bad. Now we’ve got this animal, this ogre, this gross — it’s so bad, it’s so bad.”

If I was Obama, by the way, I’d be very, very mad, listening to the Drive-By Media saying the last example of civility in the White House was George H. W. Bush? “What about me?” Obama is probably saying. The media didn’t treat George H. W. Bush like they’re describing him today. They didn’t treat him with this reverence and this respect. They did everything they could to mischaracterize him, to destroy his campaign, just like they do every other Republican. It’s really kind of comical to listen to all of this revolutionist history.

And here’s some examples. We’re gonna go back to October 30th, 1992. This is very, very near to a presidential election. We’re in the midst of “This is the worst economy in 50 years.” That’s the Clinton-Gore campaign slogan, the Drive-By Media is plugging it, giving examples. People are calling this show, “Rush, it can’t get any worse.”

You’re a fool! Can’t get any worse? And it wasn’t the worst economy in the last 50 years. It was just the Clinton slug line. So one night George H. W. Bush, October 30th, 1992, agreed to appear on Larry King Live on CNN. And during a listener call-in segment where the calls are open to the general public, this happened.

KING: A call from Little Rock from George Stephanopoulos.

CROWD: (grumbling)

PRESIDENT BUSH: Oh, no. Oh, no. (chuckles) Go ahead.

KING: He’s Governor Clinton’s campaign manager. This is an open-phone session. He dialed in directly.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Just lucked into it?

KING: It wasn’t a secret number. Go ahead, George!

STEPHANOPOULOS: Mr. President, you asked us to, ummm, find out what the smoking gun was.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Yeah?

STEPHANOPOULOS: What this memo clearly shows, this memo by the secretary of defense, Caspar Weinberger, there was clearly an explicit deal of arms for hostages. But on January 8th, 1988, you said it was not arms for hostages. This memo clearly shows that it was indeed arms for hostages — five hostages in return for the sale of 4,000 TOW missiles — and that you knew it then, according to Mr. Weinberger.

RUSH: Right, George Stephanopoulos just happened to get through. On CNN, he just happened to get through. Larry King was ecstatic! “George from Little Rock!” George didn’t live in Little Rock. He was at the Clinton war room calling in! Yeah, “kinder, gentler America,” “a thousand points of light,” really civil and all of that. Here is President Bush’s retort…

PRESIDENT BUSH: To this very day, President Reagan didn’t feel that that arrangement was arms for hostages. I said I supported the president of the United States. I have testified to that. And, George, if I might make a little political observation here, ’cause I keep reading you’re getting into our stories all the time, I think this is rather desperation, last-minute politics when you feel something slipping away from you.

AUDIENCE: (applause)

PRESIDENT BUSH: We’re too smart for that.

AUDIENCE: (cheers and applause)

PRESIDENT BUSH: We’re too smart!

RUSH: Now, keep in mind we’re talking about the guy who’s chief anchor at Good Morning America. Direct from the Clinton war room, George Stephanopoulos is now a “journalist” at ABC, and he’s been there for who knows how many years. So this was a setup from day one, and here’s Larry King. So this is after you heard Bush say, “This is a last-minute political move when you feel like everything slipping away from you,” Larry King jumps in to save the day for Stephanopoulos and says…

KING: George, you want to respond?

STEPHANOPOULOS: All I can say in response was —

PRESIDENT BUSH: I didn’t come here to debate Stephanopoulos. I’m ready to debate you, Larry. Come on.

AUDIENCE: (applause)

PRESIDENT BUSH: This little guy?

RUSH: “I didn’t come here to debate Stephanopoulos. I’m ready to debate you, Larry. Come on. This little guy?” That’s what Bush said. Now we move on to James Carville, 1993. This from the documentary film The War Room. They made a documentary, a movie celebrating the brilliant tactics of Carville and Stephanopoulos and Paul Begala. We have a clip from the documentary, The War Room. It’s about Clinton’s presidential campaign. This is James Carville speaking to the campaign office in Manchester, New Hampshire, before a primary.

CARVILLE: If we win this, then you have knocked this (bleep) back forever.

CAMPAIGN OPERATIVES: (applause)

CARVILLE: Okay? Georgette Mosbacher? You know, she’s the secretary of the person closest to Bush. You know what she said? She can’t wait ’til this election is over so she can get her Maserati and her jewels back. That’s the mind-set that you fightin’ against. It’s about George Bush and Roger Ailes and Georgette Mosbacher and the whole sleazy little cabal of ’em.

OPERATIVES: (applause)

CARVILLE: And you know what kind of (bleep) you gonna get? You gonna get the kind of Supreme Court that you got, you gonna get tax breaks for the wealthy, you gonna get a guy that doesn’t know what a grocery store scanner is —

CAMPAIGN OPERATIVES: (smattering of laughter)

CARVILLE: — and everything else. Okay? So let’s go. Don’t forget who the real enemy is in here, and don’t forget what we’re really campaigning against.

RUSH: Wait! Whoa, whoa, whoa. “Don’t forget who the really enemy is”? Whoa, whoa. They won’t let Trump say that. When Trump says who the real enemy is, they jump all over him. Here’s George Stephanopoulos’ buddy, Carville, calling George H. W. Bush “the real enemy.” Let’s not… Oh, and Georgette “Moseburgah,” as he says, and her jewels and her Maserati. By the way, I know Georgette. She didn’t drive a Maserati. She didn’t drive. She was driven.

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