Bachmann: The American People are Looking to Voices Like Hannity, Limbaugh, Levine and Beck
More of Michele Bachmann's nuttery from last night's Larry King Live. Bachmann singing the praises of Hannity, Limbaugh, Levine and Beck and calling their followers who are as King points out, 2% of the country, a "critical mass" and a "movement".
KING: Congresswoman Bachmann, I would gather from your political end of the -- of the spectrum, you enjoyed that?
BACHMANN: Well, sure. Republicans like humor, too, Larry. And so it's fun to see -- it's fun to -- it's fun to watch that show. And I think that what we're seeing now is after nine months, "Saturday Night Live" has decided to take on the president, too. I think that's good for everyone.
KING: Well, but here's what might not be so good for everyone. Senator Lindsey -- GOP Senator Lindsey Graham recently blamed the current lack of civility in U.S. politics on voters electing confrontational representatives, faulted the 24 hour news cycle -- hello us -- talk radio and groups like MoveOn.org.
Did he have a point, James?
Are we -- have we gotten vituperative?
CARVILLE: Well, yes. But I mean to some extent, too, the politicians are -- are playing along with this, too. Yes, I think so. And I think Senator Graham, like a lot of people in the Republican Party, everybody keeps one-up in Rush, one-ups Glenn Beck or one-ups Sean or one-ups the next guy to see who can say the nuttiest thing. And I think people like Senator Graham or -- or a congressman from Michigan, a fellow by the name, I think, of McCarter, who called Senator DeMint nuts. I think people in the -- there's some people in the Republican Party who want to get that party in a methadone clinic so they can get off of the heroin and all of this crazy talk that comes out of all these people. And so that's what's going on here.
BACHMANN: You know, Larry, one thing...
KING: Ari, are the...
KING: Are the...
KING: ...as he calls them, are the nutty -- Ari, are the nutty people, frankly -- and some of them go a little wacko -- hurting you?
FLEISCHER: I'm glad to see that James just played his part in lowering the temperature.
Look, Larry, I take these things with a grain of salt. You know, in the -- in the election of 1800, it was said you couldn't walk across the street without fear of being caned by people from what was then the opposite party. This has been a part of the lifeblood of a noisy democracy forever.
What's happened today is just with the speed of communications, it gets reverberated and echoed faster.
But here's the bigger point -- and I say this with all respect. The evening cable show that has the most viewers has three million viewers in a nation of 300 million. And so I think a lot of people are pretty sensible, don't pay attention to all the noise and all the shouting. And I'll take this country with its noisy democracy over any other country any other day. BACHMANN: And, Larry, if I could just add...
KING: There was a "New York"...
BACHMANN: ...there's no -- Larry...
KING: Go ahead, Michele.
BACHMANN: Larry, if I could just add, the shows that have had the greatest ratings increases in recent time have been Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity. People go where they think they're going to hear the truth. And that's why they're going to those shows.
KING: But -- but, Congresswoman, as Ari points out, they're talking about 1 percent of the population. They had no effect on the election. And to the -- wouldn't -- wouldn't you, as a Republican, would you want them to be the voice of the Republican Party?
BACHMANN: Well, still, it's their ratings that are going up. And I think you have to look at the reality of ratings...
KING: No, forget that.
Would you want them...
BACHMANN: And those are the ratings that are going up.
KING: Would you want the Limbaugh -- would you want -- would you want the Limbaugh, that crowd, to call it -- would you want them to be your voice as the Republican Party stands in this country?
BACHMANN: Well, remember, it's who the American people are referring to, Larry. And the American people are looking to voices like Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levine, Glenn Beck.
KING: I just told you, but it's 2 percent of America.
BACHMANN: Well, but again...
KING: It's 2 percent.
BACHMANN: If you look for a critical mass, that's the movement, that's the direction that the critical mass is going.
BACHMANN: And I -- the American people are very smart people.
KING: All right. Hill, do you think that's the mass?
HARPER: I -- I think there's...
KING: He thinks that's funny.
HARPER: ...that there's a misnomer. You know, it's entertainment. Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck...
HARPER: It's -- it's just -- it's not news, it's entertainment. And we call it just like Vince McMahon on WW...
KING: But she says that people are taking it seriously.
HARPER: Well, folks do. And that -- and that's unfortunate, because a lot of it plays on a channel...
BACHMANN: Very seriously.
HARPER: ...that's called a news channel. It should -- it should be called an entertainment channel.
But if we talk about -- well, let's -- let's talk about leadership rather than talking about civility. I think that there is an opportunity in both parties for individuals to really step up and actually get some light shined on them and become leaders in their party and do things that rather than just (INAUDIBLE)...
KING: And maybe Senator Graham is doing that.
Some of President Obama's critics are still challenging the place of his birth.