Carville: Make No Mistake...Rush Limbaugh Runs The GOP

[media id=7254] James Carville tears into the pathetic GOP for bowing at the feet of a "self-discredited, drug-addled gas bag". "He is the most exal

James Carville tears into the pathetic GOP for bowing at the feet of a "self-discredited, drug-addled gas bag".

"He is the most exalted Republican. He is the leader of their party. They have submitted to him in the Congress. They quake at mighty Rush. And he's the one that's setting the Republican agenda. They don't care what Michael Steele says. He can go do anything he wants. And we just have to acknowledge that kind of awesome political power within the Republican Party where it exists. And I was acknowledging power and hypocrisy which is, you know, two things that are in abundance in Washington.

"These Republicans are scared to death of Rush Limbaugh because he is the most powerful person in that party. Which is kind of odd that a political party has a radio talk show host as its intellectual power house, but that's today's Republican Party, and we Democrats have to acknowledge that."

It's pretty sad to see an American political party fall all over themselves to please someone like Rush Limbaugh. Then again, if they want to follow that clown over the proverbial cliff, by all means be my guest.

Full transcript below the fold:

CNN:

MICHAEL STEELE, RNC CHAIRMAN: Rush Limbaugh is a conservative voice in this country that, clearly, people must pay attention to and, clearly, the Obama administration and others in the administration must be paying attention to. So, Rush will say what Rush has to say. We will do what we have to do.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROBERTS: That is the newly minted chairman of the Republican National Committee, trying to downplay Rush Limbaugh's power within the GOP. But at least one Democratic insider is not buying it -- James Carville has gone so far as to say that Rush Limbaugh is running the Republican Party. James is also a CNN contributor. He joins us now this morning from New Orleans.

Good morning to you, James.

JAMES CARVILLE, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: Good morning.

ROBERTS: You wrote a column recently in which you rebutted something that Rush Limbaugh said, in which he believed that ideas for the financial stimulus package should be allocated according to the percentages in the November 4th election, which would mean that Democrats would have 54 percent of the ideas, Republicans would have 46 percent of the ideas. What do you have to say about that?

CARVILLE: Well, I just thought that it has risen to the level of hypocrisy that had to be dealt with none other than humor. As you know, Rush Limbaugh on a "Wall Street Journal" editorial page wrote that 100 percent in favor for overturning the popular will in the 2000 election. So, I just want to point that out.

He is the most exalted Republican. He is the leader of their party. They have submitted to him in the Congress. They quake at mighty Rush. And he's the one that's setting the Republican agenda. They don't care what Michael Steele says. He can go do anything he wants. And we just have to acknowledge that kind of awesome political power within the Republican Party where it exists. And I was acknowledging power and hypocrisy which is, you know, two things that are in abundance in Washington.

(CROSSTALK)

ROBERTS: Just to remind people, you said in your column that Rush Limbaugh was, quote, "the moral and intellectual leader and most influential person in the Republican Party." Do you really believe that he is more powerful than the GOP leadership -- McConnell, Boehner and Cantor?

CARVILLE: Of course, he is. I mean, if you look at this guy Phil Gingrey, this Republican congressman, who is just groveling to him. He has said on his show that he has more power than these people. You cannot -- no one in the Republican Party is scared of John Boehner. No one in the Republican Party is scared of Mitch McConnell.

I heard Senator McCain, who, as we know, is one of the really brave people in politics, his voice was almost quaking. He didn't want to do anything to offend Rush Limbaugh. These Republicans are scared to death of Rush Limbaugh because he is the most powerful person in that party.

ROBERTS: And this is...

CARVILLE: Which is kind of odd that a political party has a radio talk show host as its intellectual power house, but that's today's Republican Party, and we Democrats have to acknowledge that.

ROBERTS: And this isn't you just stirring the pot, James?

CARVILLE: Well, why would I? I mean, I'm not stirring the pot. Yes, I'm stirring the pot on the hypocrisy of him saying it should be a 54/46 allocation, but it's the Republicans who have put Rush in this position, and I'm just acknowledging the opposition leader of the party opposite mine.

ROBERTS: Let me switch gears here. Barack Obama, the president, is looking for some Republican cooperation on the economic stimulus bill in the Senate at least. E.J. Dionne writes in the "Washington Post" yesterday about bipartisanship, quote, "If achieving bipartisanship takes priority over the actual content of policy, Republicans are handed a powerful weapon. In theory, they can keep moving the bipartisan bar indefinitely. And each concession to their sensibilities threatens the solidarity in the president's own camp."

Do you think the president risks paying too high a price to get Republicans on board in the stimulus package?

CARVILLE: It's possible. But, you know, right -- one of the funny things as I was reading the papers this morning before I came on, and I realized President Obama has been president for two weeks. It feels like two years already.

But it -- it does, but, at a point, I think, this president is going to drop the hammer and say, OK, this is my priorities, this is what we can't negotiate on, this is what we can negotiate on. But right now, he is really - they're really striving hard to try to get something bipartisan, something that the whole country feels like it can get behind. And, you know, that's pretty consistent with his campaign message and it's pretty consistent with what he's doing in the cabinet.

ROBERTS: James Carville stirring the gumbo this morning. It's always good to see you, James. CARVILLE: Thank you, John Roberts. Take care.

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