I want to take you back to the archives of this program, February 4th of 2008. From my website, RushLimbaugh.com: “One candidate now stands for all three legs of conservatism.” February 4th, 2008. You people have forgotten. I supported Romney in 2008. I was defending Romney against the fact that Huckabee and McCain were ganging up on him in the
primaries. I did everything but endorse Romney in 2008…. West Virginia
From this program, February 4, 2008: “I think now, based on the way the campaign has shaken out, that there probably is a candidate on our side who does embody all three legs of the conservative stool, and that’s Romney. The three legs of the stool are national security/foreign policy, the social conservatives, and the fiscal conservatives. The social conservatives are the cultural people; fiscal conservatives, the economic crowd, low taxes, smaller government, get out of the way.”… Back in 2008 Romney was the guy. There weren’t too many alternatives.
In Spherical Model language, we have three overlaying spheres: the political sphere (freedom vs. tyranny), the economic sphere (free enterprise vs. controlled economy), and the social sphere (civilization vs. savagery). The things we as conservatives intend to conserve are freedom, free enterprise, and civilization. They interrelate; you can’t get freedom and prosperity without living the rules of civilization. And it’s hard to get to civilization when freedom and prosperity are hindered. At this point it’s not so much about “conserving” those things as getting back to them—reinstituting. But when we say “conservative ideology,” we mean the principles the bring about freedom, prosperity, and civilization.
Rush went to say:
Conservatism is the solution, proud, unabashed, cheerful conservatism. I believe the campaign ought to be run on ideology. I know there are a lot of people, “No, no, we can’t go ideological, Rush; it’s too limiting. It thwarts, it scares off the independents.” I think ideology is what sells conservatism….
I know the effort is intense to force conservative ideologues to tamp it down. I fully understand that. I see the evidence of it each and every day. But who is it, name a name. When you get excited about a candidate or an elected official, public figure, who says something that really rallies you, why has that happened? That person’s engaged in ideology. And what I mean by that is principles. The person has supported, can explain, optimistically advance principles.
Conservative principles, I believe, are the principles that founded this country. They work.
Then he points out Bobby Jindal’s reelection as governor of
—as a principled conservative. In a landslide—in liberal (and historically corrupt) Louisiana ! The press doesn’t want to mention it, because that whole principled conservative thing wins elections. It’s what worked in November 2010. It will work again in 2012—even more. Louisiana
He’s not endorsing Romney—not yet anyway. He agrees with me:
I think any of our candidates could beat Obama, especially if the election were tomorrow, any of our candidates could beat Obama. Well, maybe two exceptions. I’m not sure that Huntsman could, and I’m not sure that Ron Paul could. But the rest of them up there….
Why not those two? Rush didn’t say, but if there must be three legs of the stool, Paul says things that make us not trust him to keep us safe. He’s very good, however, on economic and social issues (except for a few libertarian issues, for example, drug legalization). When Huntsman has a good day, he sounds pretty conservative, but there’s often indefiniteness, a hint of not being firmly there on principle on all three legs of the conservative stool—more policy than ideology. He’s comfortable dwelling near the equator, maybe even a little south of the equator, in the political, economic, and social spheres. And that won’t do when what we want is an anti-Obama. Clarity on principles the lead to freedom, economic prosperity, and civilization—that’s what we need.