Thursday on his nationally syndicated radio show, conservative talker Rush Limbaugh offered his thoughts on former President George W. Bush’s remarks earlier in the day that some have suggested were calling out supporters of President Donald Trump.
In his remarks in New York City, Bush criticized bigotry and white supremacy in society and added that “nationalism distorted into nativism” was evident in politics.
Limbaugh reacted by asking if this was Bush’s way of calling out the “deplorables” 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton spoke out about publicly during her campaign.
Partial transcript as follows (courtesy of RushLimbaugh.com):
LIMBAUGH: George W. Bush did not say much of anything for the eight years of the regime of Barack Hussein O. He didn’t write a letter. He often said, “Hey, I had my eight years. I’m not gonna comment on my successor. It’s not the way we former presidents do things,” unless you’re Bill Clinton or Algore; then you do. But George W. Bush never did. I don’t think Bush had anything to say about Clinton when he took over in 2000, and I don’t think he had a thing to say while Obama was unwinding his agenda. And this, again, is something I don’t understand.
If it were me… I just put myself in these guys’ shoes. If I were me, and I ever ran for office, it would not be because I want to live in the White House, want fame, want power. It would be because I am obsessed with advancing my agenda and building America or reforming it to be what it should be and why I thought that I could get elected. And if I did get elected, and if I had any kind of success at all, I don’t know how I would just be able to sit by silently and watch somebody lie about it and unravel it. But that’s the rule, and that’s what ex-presidents do.
And, now, Obama is perceived as doing that, but he really isn’t. Obama is guiding, Obama is instrumental in all of these efforts to undermine Trump. He’s just not seen. He doesn’t do it personally. He doesn’t go on television personally and do it. He has surrogates. Many of his surrogates are still deeply embedded in the bureaucracy known as the deep state. Eric Holder and all these other holdovers are still out there and they’re doing everything they can to undermine what Trump wants to do.
But George W. Bush never did. Never any of that. But all of a sudden George W. Bush feels compelled to speak out. So we have three sound bites from New York City this morning, a conference hosted by the George W. Bush Institute. It’s an adjunct of the George W. Bush Presidential Library, which is on the campus at SMU, and here we have three bites. Here is the first of three…
GEORGE W. BUSH: Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication. We’ve seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty. At times, it could seem like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together. Argument turns too easily into animosity. Disagreement escalates into dehumanization. We’ve seen nationalism distorted into nativism, forgotten the dynamism that immigration has always brought to America.
LIMBAUGH: Well, okay, uh, “the dynamism that immigration has brought to America.” I have a stat. I saw this the other day. It’s one of these things I knew but I didn’t know. I said, “Yeah!” It shocked me, but then when I stopped and thought about it, it had to be true. The U.S. immigrant population has hit a record 43.7 million in 2016. One-out-of-5.5 — one out of five and a half — Americans is an immigrant, legal and illegal combined. One out of five. That’s not dynamism. That is an invasion that has been ignored and you might even say covered up.
It is a trend that a majority of Americans oppose and that’s why Donald Trump was elected. But that’s not it. George W. Bush says, “Bigotry seems emboldened.” Too much bigotry out there. “Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories” only on Twitter “and outright fabrication.” That’s the Drive-By Media, Mr. President. They’re the ones making stuff up. “We’ve seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty.” I know that all of this stuff is aimed at Trump, but in truth, you could lay all of this at the feet of the Democrat Party, the American left, the media.
“At times it could seem like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together.” That’s not… What’s happening here is there was a phony, false, plastic banana, good-time rock ‘n’ roller effort to force people together. It’s not to create unity but to force people together by punishing certain elements of our society and labeling them and criticizing them and claiming they had to take one for the team! There’s a way you go about promoting unity, but that’s not what this has been.
This has been a forced: “You will accept this and you will like this or else,” and all of that happened against the will of the American people. When they couldn’t get the votes for doing this, they found other ways of changing immigration law or largely not enforcing it. “We’ve seen nationalism distorted into nativism.” So George W. Bush is… He’s calling out Trump voters here and Trump. Here’s the next bite. There are two more together.
GEORGE W. BUSH: America has experienced a sustained attempt by hostile power to feed and exploit our country’s divisions.
GEORGE W. BUSH: According to our intelligence services, the Russian government has made a project of turning Americans against each other. This effort is broad, systemic, and stealthy. It’s conducted across a range of social media platforms.
LIMBAUGH: Holy smokes! Are you kidding me? The Russians have infiltrated our politics! The Russians have been trying to infiltrate — and they’ve succeeded — college campuses for decades. But this? “America has experienced a sustained attempt by a hostile power” that’s Russia “to feed and exploit our country’s divisions. It’s conducted across range of social media platforms.” Mark Penn — who is the pollster for Hillary Clinton, but the guy seems embarrassed to be in any way associated with her. Did you see what he said the other day?
The latest controversy is the Russians, “See all the ads the Russians bought on Facebook? The Russians are polluting people’s minds. Zuckerberg didn’t know what happened. Zuckerberg got Zucked! Zuckerberg got screwed by the Russians.” Mark Pence said (summarized), “Wait a minute. They bought $100,000 worth of ads! Nobody — nobody but nobody — is elected president after a $100,000 ad buy.” But who turned social media into something that’s so relevant rather than what it is? Social media has become a source of authority for the Drive-By Media and so they’re very interested in what happens there, and here’s… Yeah, we got time for the third bite. This is it…
GEORGE W. BUSH: Our identity as a nation unlike many other nations is not determined by geography or ethnicity, by soil or blood. Being American involves embrace of high ideals and civic responsibility. We become the heirs of Thomas Jefferson by accepting the ideal of human dignity found in the Declaration of Independence. We become the heirs of James Madison by understanding the genius and values of the U.S. Constitution. We become the heirs of Martin Luther King Jr. by recognizing one another not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. This means that people of every nation, race, ethnicity can be fully and equally American. It means that bigotry or white supremacy in any form is blasphemy against the American creed.
LIMBAUGH: I don’t know. What is this, the George W. Bush version of Hillary’s deplorables?
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