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Just two days after watching The Godfather for the umpteenth time, I read “RUSH MAKES OBAMA an offer he can’t accept.“Â The talk show host has invited the president onto his “program without staffers, without a TelePrompTer, without note cards to debate [him] on the issues.”
It looks like Limbaugh has taken the bait the White House offered him in attacking him for his stirring speech at CPAC and bitten it off without getting caught on the hook. And he swims away with a smile, the Democrats still hold the hook — and an empty line.
It’s almost been amusing these past few days watching the Emanuel/Carville/Begala White House/MSM axis go overboard to potray Rush as the head of the GOP because the talk show host’s unpopularity “with many Americans, especially younger voters.” Tying him to the GOP will help sink the GOP.
Their strategy may have some short-term success, turning attention from his eloquent criticism of the Administration’s agenda to his middling popularity outside consevative circles. But, over time, people will start wondering about a White House mounting an offense more akin to attacking its adversaries through a series of personal vendettas than to promoting legislative proposals through articulation of its policy goals.
Offering to debate Obama mano a mano, so to speak, Rush puts his attackers on the spot.Â He shows himself as willing to a engage discussion of ideas. By refusing his offer, the expose their strategy as ad hominem political hardball where you personalize the contest.
That’s not a new kind of politics. It’s just reintroducing the type of politics played in the Administration where Rahm Emanuel, James Carville, Paul Begala and George Stephanopoulos cut their political teeth, that of Bill Clinton.
*With this title, I was trying to suggest that Rush caught Emanuel et al. with the hook with which they intended to catch him (& the GOP). But, maybe I should have elected simplicity as the Anchoress did in linking this post: Limbaugh took the White House bait without getting hooked. She offers her own thoughts and links a number of conservative bloggers covering this story, so check her post out!