We know Mitt Romney has trouble wooing tea partiers to his cause. We know that from the polls and the fact that people as unproven as Donald Trump and Herman Cain have led him in the polls so far this cycle.
But we also know it because Rush Limbaugh just won’t give the man a break.
Rush, aka, The Host Who Must Be Obeyed, has waged a one-man war on Romney for the entirety of his latest run for office.
His latest salvo? Romney’s “not a conservative.” Ouch.
“He’s not, folks. You can argue with me all day long on that, but he isn’t,” Rush said on his show recently. “This isn’t personal, not with what country faces and so forth. I like him very much. I’ve spent some social time with him. He’s a fine guy. He’s very nice gentleman. He is a gentleman. But he’s not a conservative.”
This sounds quite a bit like what Dr. Robert Jeffress said about Romney’s faith, by the way.
“I think Mitt Romney’s a good, moral man, but I think those of us who are born-again followers of Christ should always prefer a competent Christian to a competent non-Christian like Mitt Romney,” Jeffress told CNN.
But we digress. Back to Rush’s tough statements about Romney. This one, from August, was actually billed as a defense of Romney against others attacking him.
“Yeah, people are reluctant to vote for Romney I think for two reasons. I think compared to Obama, they’re both laughable. One is Romneycare. I can’t vote for that! It’s same thing as Obama,” and the other one is his religion. Those are the two things that Romney is up against. Now, Romneycare we know is not gonna happen again, he’s learned his mistake — and I’d much rather take Romney’s religion to Obama’s, which is Reverend Wright.”
Summary: Romney bad, Obama worse. Hold your nose and pick Romney in that pair.
This again sounds a lot like Jeffress.
“I would rather have a non-Christian who at least supports biblical principles than a professing Christian like Barack Obama who embraces unbiblical positions,” Jeffress told CNN.
Argh — again we digress!
So yeah: Rush is not really a fan of Romney. Which fits because most people who Rush most speaks to don’t seem like they are either based on polling. So the “not a conservative” comment today is not new — but that doesn’t mean it’s not damaging.
The Romney campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
A reader points out this interesting twist in Limbaugh’s war on Romney. Back in 2008, Limbaugh actually said Romney is a guy “who does embody all three legs of the conservative stool.”
But that was in comparison to the field back then, which included John McCain (who Rush said didn’t have any interest in social issue politics) and Mike Huckabee (who Rush said wasn’t making much of an impact on national security politics.)
So: Rush is still no fan of Romney, but he was even less of a fan of McCain back in 2008. How times change.