Poll: Rush Limbaugh And White House Are Both Wrong When It Comes To GOP

A new Rasmussen Reports poll finds that conservative talk show host and GOP powerhouse Rush Limbaugh and White House aides and allies are wrong: only a small percentage of Republicans considers Limbaugh their leader:

Despite efforts by the Obama political team and its surrogates to link Rush Limbaugh to the Republican Party, just 11% of GOP voters say the conservative radio commentator is the party’s leader.

Eighty-one percent (81%) of Republican voters disagree and 8% are undecided in a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

Democrats, however, are closely divided– 44% say Limbaugh is the Republican leader and 41% don’t believe it. Among voters not affiliated with either of the major national parties, 27% say Limbaugh is the Republicans’ leader, while 58% say he is not and 15% are undecided.

Rasmussen Reports is testing public reaction to a series of quotes made by newsmakers recently. For this topic, respondents were asked if they agreed or disagreed with the statement, “Rush Limbaugh is the leader of the Republican Party. He says jump, and they say how high.”

However, despite a report creating a stir on the Internet about how White House aides and allies are trying to make Limbaugh a symbol, the fact is Limbaugh is hardly a victim — and in fact both sides now are in a symbotic relationship

*Limbaugh gets to increase his clout within the party, gets lots of new and old media publicity (even if negative it promotes him as a name brand), and the controversy will also likely greatly increase his listenership among those upset over Obama’s far-reaching proposals. Unless some GOPers feel they have to somehow detach their party from him because he endangers the party’s electoral fortunes, Liimbaugh only stands to gain if the uproar continues. (The Drudge Report had a screaming headline suggesting the controversy over Limbaugh was all a Democratic plot –which doesn’t quite make sense given the fact that Limbaugh has not exactly had duct tape over his mouth the past few weeks…or last weekend).

*The White House gets a “high concept” symbol of someone who is anathema to most Democrats and many independent voters — and also to some young people who consider right and left rage-filled screamfests over “liberal” and “conservative” and how the other political party is full of personified demons lame. It will be difficult for the GOP to expand its tent if it’s most visible and recognizable symbol isn’t a major politician but a talk show host who seems perpetually angry and mocking — and who is exclusionary due to the way that talk show hosts have to be solidify and keep a demographic to deliver to advertisers. Limbaugh is a superb broadcaster – and a smart businessman.

The question now becomes how the GOP apparatus and political elites can get the message out that the poll suggests thk of Republicans would like to get out (understanding that polls are never entirely accurate); Limbaugh is a Republican, but not THE Republican for them.

But the White House and Limbaugh may have other priorities…

  

9 Comments

  1. This has got to be creating a boon for his ratings. Hell even I turned him on today for the first time in months to hear him offering to debate Barak Obama about his policies. Not some hackey but Obama himself.

    Limbaugh is eating this up as the left is trying desperately to take the heat off their man and his Boondoggle Budget Bill.

  2. If the pollster had called me I would have asked if there was a category of “Are you serious?”
    Its a pure feint by the White House, meant to keep 20 percenters off balance, while Obama leads from the center. Few should believe that a talk radio host is really the “leader” of a major political party, while most of us see it for what it is.

    Best part is that Limbaugh will never shut up, he revels in the attention.

  3. The Democrats need a new Conservative Bogeyman now that bush is fading from the scene, Limbaugh is an easy choice for them to use. Easier than running against a strawman than to run on ideas. They want to make things a referrendum on a talk radio personality rather than the merits and demerits of their own policies.

  4. This is the biggest waste of time. Some math and some logic (neither of which have yet to appear in any TMV article or lefty comment).

    Limbaugh's weekly audience 13M (this obviously overcounts daily listener duplicates)

    Number of voters 11/08 125.2M

    So, 90% of the voters aren't even in play to begin with

    Even of that 10%, about how many does any rational person think voted for Obama?……..what, maybe 6?

    So, TMV and other media folks have nothing better to do than worry that Limbaugh might inappropriately influence 6 votes.

  5. This is actually hilarious. It really does show how desperate the Democrats are right now and how even themselves are blown away with 3 trillion dollars in deficit spending after spending 8 years railing against deficit spending and how it will destroy America.

  6. I would like to know what would make Rasmussen expect an honest answer to this question.

  7. Rush Limbaugh February 13, 2009:

    “I'll say it again. Not only do I want Obama to fail, I want this package to fail. I want this to blow up in their face.

    I hope the stimulus bill fails. I hope it does exactly what we know it will do, blow everything to smithereens and not do one thing that has been promised. Apparently, experience is the greatest teacher, and when these poor people who think Barack Obama means a new house, a new car, a new job, when they find out that's not what Barack Obama means, maybe then they'll see. So I hope that happens.

    I hope Obama fails. Now the bill has passed the House. I hope when they implement it, that it fails. If I hope it fails beforehand, I better hope it fails afterwards to be consistent, right?”

  8. greenschemes: “It really does show how desperate the Democrats are right now…”

    Hahahaha…. ROFLMAO.

    We all know that in politics that one party will take advantage of any given situation. In this case it's the Republicans who are keeping this Limbaugh situation alive. They are the ones apologizing to Rush for the smallest slight and none of them has stood up and said that they repudiate Rush's hyper-partisanship and his wishing that Obama will fail, much less denied that Rush is a leader of the party.

    If the Republicans were not afraid of Rush they would stand up to him (and stand up for the good of America). But as it is the Republicans feel that Rush has tremendous influence and that if they cross him then Rush won't endorse them and they will not be re-elected. Particularly when they know that if they don't endorse Rush then there will be Republican opponent running against them who will endorse Rush and get his support. The Republicans have the backbone of a dead ebola virus.

  9. Stockboy- they're not afraid of Rush, they just agree with him (although they know that they shouldn't say it in the way that he does.) That's why it's a dilemma which the Democrat strategists have capitalized on (with media cooperation) by putting various GOP leaders on the spot to either denounce Limbaugh or state that they agree with him.

    This may well backfire on them because I'll bet Limbaugh is getting a ton of new listeners tuning in to see what all the brouhaha is about. And that not only benefits him personally, but if he'll begin to take the focus off of himself he is actually quite good at communicating conservative philosophy to people who haven't been very politically engaged and he may gain some converts as people begin looking more critically at the overhyped Obama administration.

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