Rush Limbaugh Not Supporting Republican Nominee?

Rush Limbaugh Not Supporting Republican Nominee? Radio talk king Rush Limbaugh told his audience yesterday that he might not support the Republican nominee for president this year. Rob Port has the audio and the relevant transcript:

CALLER: Earlier you had mentioned that when the time comes, you’re going to announce or get behind somebody, and I’m just wondering, what’s your selection criteria for picking a candidate, and two, how do you decide when that time is that you’re going to announce? I’m more interested in how you pick a candidate. Because especially this year with—there’s really not a true conservative. How do you narrow it down?

RUSH: That’s an excellent point. I don’t have a time frame, just to address that first. I don’t have a time frame.

CALLER: All right.

RUSH: And I also, I can see possibly not supporting a Republican nominee.

CALLER: Hm-hm.

RUSH: And I never thought that I would say that in my life.

I explained yesterday, in my responses to Steve Bainbridge (Fred Thompson Loss Ends Republican Party and Does Losing Focus the Attention?) why this stance is self-defeating. In this particular case, though, I tend to agree with commenter Lestat, who quips, “Don’t worry, Rush won’t end up standing on principle, he never does. He will end up ‘carrying the water’ of whoever the Republican nominee is.”

My preference is somewhere in between: Expressing one’s honest disagreement with the nominee but nonetheless choosing the best of the available choices. One doesn’t have to pretend Romney or McCain or whomever is the second coming of Ronald Reagan to decide you’d rather have him running the executive branch than Hillary Clinton.

via Conservative Grapevine

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2008, General, , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Bithead says:

    It still comes down to, as it always has, which action will cause the country the least damage. I grant, that choice has become ever narrower.

  2. DL says:

    If the party dies because conservatives wont vote for Liberal candidates -that’s history. If the cause dies because conservatives vote for anyone to win – that’s disaster.

    Reagan got in because of Carter. Perhaps a good dose of Hillary is what this nation needs -it didn’t wake up with 9/11

  3. Continuously having to vote for an ever declining least worst choice is why some people are saying they will not vote for the nominee of their party even at the risk of having something worse.

    Personally, as a libertarian leaning conservative, I cannot conceive of voting for any of the current crop of Democrats, though that should come as a surprise to no one. I will not vote for Mike Huckabee if he wins the Republican nomination. Huckabee is just a national version of Michael Bloomberg calling himself a Republican.

    Republicans of all stripes have become the Democrats of about twenty years ago vis-a-vis the size, growth rate and purpose of government. Meanwhile, the Democrats have just gone statist bat-shit crazy, with seemingly no area of culture or commerce deemed beyond their hubristic control.

    Perhaps like all recovering addicts, the American public must hit bottom before they can admit they have a problem and start the long slow slog back towards fiscal responsibility and respect for the individual. Jimmy Carter sufficed to fill this role back in the 1970s. We’d get there with a continuation of the Bushes in another 12-20 years, but perhaps the Clintons or Obamas of the world can cut that in half. I’m certain John Edwards can accompish the feat in a single term.

    Yes, I am again deeply cynical and pessimistic about our future because so damned few people take liberty seriously anymore.

  4. davod says:

    Charles Austin: You seem to have covered everything.

  5. Tlaloc says:

    JJ:

    In this particular case, though, I tend to agree with commenter Lestat, who quips, “Don’t worry, Rush won’t end up standing on principle, he never does. He will end up ‘carrying the water’ of whoever the Republican nominee is.”

    Yeah, hard to lose on that one since he blatantly admitted that he “had to carry the republican congress’ water.”

    Meanwhile, the Democrats have just gone statist bat-shit crazy,

    considering that one of the major parties is guilty of literally supporting gulags, and it isn’t the democrats, I find this observation doubtful.

  6. Tlaloc, that is nonsense and trivializes the real gulags were millions died from freezing and starvation, rather than a subtropical jail where most of the hundreds kept there gained weight. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being opposed in principle to the liberation of Iraq, the GWOT in general, the jail at Guantanamo, George Bush, etc., but this kind of hyperbole is just bullshit and I will gladly call it such. If it leads to my banishment, oh well, so be it.

  7. Tlaloc says:

    Tlaloc, that is nonsense and trivializes the real gulags were millions died from freezing and starvation, rather than a subtropical jail where most of the hundreds kept there gained weight.

    Actually I was talking more about the constellation of secret CIA prisons, at least one of which was based in a former Gulag.

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being opposed in principle to the liberation of Iraq, the GWOT in general, the jail at Guantanamo, George Bush, etc., but this kind of hyperbole is just bullshit and I will gladly call it such.

    Feel free to call bullshit, but when the facts are that the US government has operated secret prisons where prisoners were denied any sort of habeaus corpus determination of guilt and torture was used… well then the *only* difference between the Soviet Gulags and ours is the matter of scale. Oh we know at least one prisoner was tortured to death in Abu Ghraib. It’d be a trifle starry eyed to assume the same hasn’t happened in the CIA secret prisons.

  8. just me says:

    I am pretty sure the conservative leaning radio commentators will line up behind the eventual nominee.

    I don’t listen to Rush, really don’t catch that much talk radio.

    I am more in the-“While I would prefer another nominee, I will vote for X, because he does support X, Y, Z” camp.

    I could probably vote for just about any of the possible nominees, except for Huckabee-other than social conservatism, he doesn’t strike me much as a Republican. He is more of what I would view the typical Southern Democrat.

  9. Tlaloc, the perfect remains the enemy of the good. I don’t have to agree with, defend or justify any illegal acts that may have been committed by our troops or agents to maintain that the difference between what the USA is doing in the 21st century and what the Soviets did in the 20th century is more than just a matter of scale. However, you seem willing to believe that something like, say, Abu Ghraib makes Bush no different than Stalin, if I understand you correctly.

    If Bush somehow cancels the next election, has 90% of the senior officers in the military shot, has one of his political competitors assasinated with a hatchet in Mexico City, enters into an agreement with Hugo Chavez to divide up Mexico, starts placing GOP political operatives with each division and allows them to outrank their commanders, or decides to depopulate the Blue states through a policy of starvation, then perhaps I’ll reconsider, but until then… I still call bullshit.

    We’re still the good guys. Not the perfect guys, but the good guys. That is the best we can hope for.

  10. Tlaloc says:

    Tlaloc, the perfect remains the enemy of the good.

    When you are calling the “disappearing” of people and torture of helpless prisoners “good” I think I’ll hold out for perfect. Thanks.

    However, you seem willing to believe that something like, say, Abu Ghraib makes Bush no different than Stalin, if I understand you correctly.

    It is an issue of scale, and scale is certainly important. Stalin killed a *lot* of people. But when the only difference between you and one of history’s greatest monsters is one of scale then you’ve lost the moral high ground. Bush can’t even see the moral high ground from where he is because it’s over the horizon.

    If Bush somehow cancels the next election, has 90% of the senior officers in the military shot, has one of his political competitors assasinated with a hatchet in Mexico City, enters into an agreement with Hugo Chavez to divide up Mexico, starts placing GOP political operatives with each division and allows them to outrank their commanders, or decides to depopulate the Blue states through a policy of starvation, then perhaps I’ll reconsider, but until then… I still call bullshit.

    Well what if Bush praised and allied himself closely to a regime that is considered one of the very worst ion the world for human rights abuses (Uzbekistan)? Or if he similarly praised and allied himself to a regime where the ruling party has been known to attack voters from other parties with machetes (Egypt)? What if he unilaterally invaded a country (Iraq) and subsequently placed poorly qualified political toadies in charge of major reconstruction efforts? What if in addition to that he allowed no bid contracts to go out to companies that are political allies who subsequently defrauded the US military and government to the tune of billions with nothing more than a slap on the wrist and a bushel of new contracts?

    Are we in the ballpark yet for egregious human rights abuses and unimaginable corruption?

    Seems like we are.

    We’re still the good guys. Not the perfect guys, but the good guys.

    We were never “the good guys.” We weren’t the bad guys either. Life isn’t a western with black hats and white hats. Sometimes we do good, and sometimes we do bad. We’re the human guys, at least we are so long as we keep fighting for our humanity against our worst insticts. Making excuses for atrocities does not count.

  11. Tlaloc, you are apparently a utopian and the best we can do is to agree to disagree. I did not say that disappearing people is a good thing, and reject your characterization of my statements to imply such. Further, I do not agree with your assertion that it is only a matter of scale between Bush and Stalin. This is pure folly and cannot be taken seriously. There is no real moral high ground in your world, only an imaginary, unattainable plateau which you inhabit and from which you believe you can throw rocks at everyone who has to get their hands dirty in the real world where non-perfect choices must be made.

    Every President has allied himself with one or more countries that even they find distasteful from time to time. Gee, as imperfect as we are, how are we to even recognize who is good, or does their also not being perfect not allow us to talk with anybody? Ever?

    The oft repeated charge that Bush unilaterally invaded Iraq is demonstrably false.

    Knowing something about no-bid contracts, I’ll just say that I do not agree with your casual accusations concerning those contracts, or the viability of any potential alternatives under the circumstances. Sorry if that seems like a copout, but time is limited, and it would probably be wasted electrons anyway.

    We were the good guys and we are the good guys. That doesn’t mean anyone opposed to us is a bad guy, but some of them unquestionably are. Sometimes good guys do bad things. What distinguishes the good guys then is how they deal with it, and in my opinion we have tried to address our shortcomings and failures in an admirable manner. Mind you, we won’t agree on the nature and magnitude of those shortcomings or failures, nor on the attempts to ameliorate them, but I digress.

    I do not believe I have made a single excuse for any atrocity, whereas I have claimed that equating Bush with Stalin is downright silly and unserious. I have also claimed that we cannot throw our hands up in disgust because we cannot have the world match our ideals of perfection, and even if we could, whose ideas of perfection will win out since I’m certain mine and yours aren’t the same. Try responding to my words instead of whatever thoughts you insist on trying to project upon me so I can be lumped together as yet another ill-informed, intemperate defender of MCBUSHITLERBURTON.

  12. Tlaloc says:

    Tlaloc, you are apparently a utopian and the best we can do is to agree to disagree.

    Unfortunately, yes, if you consider the sentiment “I’d rather my government not act as if it thought ‘Orwellian’ was a compliment” to be utopian, then we live in very different worlds and I suspect never-the-twain-shall-meet.

  13. floyd says:

    James;
    You’re spot on again!

  14. Tlaloc, Once again you refuse to respond to what I write but instead build strawmen of what you want to think I believe, set fire to them and then dance with glee around their flaming embers. Have a nice life.