Posted tagged ‘Republican’

NYT Correlates Rise of Talk Radio with Decline of GOP Presidential Success

July 20, 2013

New York Times columnist Thomas B. Edsall asserts that talk radio is decreasing the Republican Party’s chances of winning a presidential race — even though in the last two election cycles the candidates least favored by talk radio won the GOP nomination.

This advances an argument contrary to that in The Right Frequency.

In a column this week, Edsall cites a Mark Rozell and Paul Goldman essay  contending Republicans were more successful when the mainstream media dominated. The NYT column says:

There is a striking correlation between the rise of conservative talk radio and the difficulties of the Republican Party in presidential elections. In an April Reuters essay, “Right Wing Talk Shows Turned White House Blue,” Mark Rozell, the acting dean of the George Mason University School of Public Policy, and Paul Goldman, a former chairman of Virginia’s Democratic Party, wrote:

Since Rush Limbaugh’s 1992 bestseller “The Way Things Ought to Be,” his conservative talk show politics have dominated G.O.P. presidential discourse — and the Republicans’ White House fortunes have plummeted. But when the mainstream media reigned supreme, between 1952 and 1988, Republicans won seven out of the 10 presidential elections.

The authors continue: “The rise of the conservative-dominated media defines the era when the fortunes of G.O.P. presidential hopefuls dropped to the worst levels since the party’s founding in 1856.”

The Right Frequency makes the opposite argument. While talk radio has been a powerful force in American conservative movement, it is not all powerful. It has influenced GOP primaries in the past but cannot pick the nominee.

Below is a passage from Chapter 1 of The Right Frequency.

In 2008 Rush Limbaugh’s “Operation Chaos” very likely helped prolong the Democratic presidential primary between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. With John McCain having wrapped up the GOP nomination early, and an apparent  Obama nomination, Limbaugh encouraged his listeners to vote in Democratic primaries, changing their party registration if necessary, to cast a vote for Hillary just to keep the contest rolling along, knowing Hillary would cling to any chance of victory. The idea was to create as much division in the Democratic Party a possible and give Republicans a better chance of winning in November 2008. But in the end, Obama won both the nomination and the election.

The view that conservative talk radio is an all powerful, or as former Republican Senator Trent Lott said, “talk radio is running America,” is ridiculously overstated. If that was the case, Obama would have never been elected president. For that matter, John McCain would not have been the GOP nominee in 2008, and the runner up would not have been Mike Huckabee, the two candidates least liked by talk radio hosts.

It is difficult however to deny the influence of talk radio on the political system. Of listeners to the news talk format of radio, 77 percent voted in the 2008 presidential election, according to the 2010 Talk Radio Research Project conducted by Talkers Magazine, which covers the talk radio industry.17 Compare that to 56.8 percent for
the general public. That does not mean Limbaugh, or for that matter Ed Schultz, is the reason certain people vote. It’s probably a nobrainer to say a frequent voter is likely more inclined than a nonvoter to listen to political radio. Still, it is quite likely that the entertainment value of talk radio—a mixture of satire and commentary—
has made ordinary Americans more engaged in politics than they would be if talk radio did not have such a large reach, even if some of those listeners are just tuning in to argue with the host.

Of Limbaugh, the book later says, “Nor has he controlled the Republican nomination process—obvious in the 2008 choice of McCain as the GOP standard bearer. He was no cheerleader for Mitt Romney during the 2012 primary either.”

Click here to order a copy of The Right Frequency.


Mark Levin Rallies Support for Sen. Orrin Hatch in Utah GOP Primary

May 26, 2012

Mark Levin, who as best selling author of Liberty & Tyranny and more recently of Ameritopia, has become a leading intellectual voice for conservatism, promoted the candidacy of Sen. Orrin Hatch, facing tea party opposition in the Utah GOP Senate primary. In 2010, Sen. Bob Bennett was defeated for the GOP nomination by tea party insurgent Mike Lee. So this race is being closely watched.

Levin, this week on his radio show with 7 million listeners per week, told his audience that Hatch has been there for conservatives and brought up the Bork SCOTUS hearing and the Thomas SCOTUS hearing.  He conceded that much like former Sen. Rick Santorum and others, Hatch made several unattractive votes supporting the big government Republicanism of George W. Bush.   But Levin made clear, Hatch was no Richard Lugar, the longtime Republican incumbent who lost his seat in the Indiana GOP primary.

“Orrin Hatch was the most reliable conservative Republican senator on the Senate Judiciary Committee, among other committees that Ronald Reagan could ever rely on,” Levin said. “And we are going to throw him out of office and claim it’s a Tea Party act when you can see in the last three years how he’s been voting, how he’s been fighting for the balanced-budget amendment and other things that we conservatives believe in since, frankly George [W.] Bush left office?”

Levin has established a unique brand of blending professorial monologues to educate with a strong dose of entertaining humor to grow an audience.  As The Right Frequency, available in August, explains, Levin is no sounding board for establishment candidates. In 2010, his program played a big role in candidates such as Marco Rubio of Florida and Rand Paul of Kentucky winning the Republican Senate nomination over the favorite candidates of the Republican party leaders. So his endorsement of Hatch is significant.

The Right Frequency is available for pre-order at a 30% discount signed by the author.

Medved on Massachusetts and Presidential Candidates

May 13, 2012

Michael Medved, one of the sharpest political observers on talk radio, penned a fascinating column explaining what’s up with Massachusetts in producing so many presidential candidates.

“But it’s actually Massachusetts, of all unlikely places, that’s the odd winner of the nomination sweepstakes, with four—count ‘em, four!—major party nominees since 1952,” Medved writes. ” This unlikely presidential breeding ground gave the nation John Kennedy, Michael Dukakis, John Kerry, and now Mitt Romney. The Bay State also produced other formidable contenders who fell short of winning the nomination, including Ted Kennedy in 1980, Paul Tsongas in 1992, and Henry Cabot Lodge, a vice presidential nominee in 1960 and briefly a presidential contender four years later. Meanwhile, two other prominent presidential aspirants were born in Massachusetts (Robert Kennedy and George H. W. Bush) though they both ultimately represented other, larger states (New York and Texas) when they ran for elective office.”

“Why would this relatively minor state, ranked 44th in land area and only 14th in population, play such an out-sized part in presidential politics?” Medved proceeds to explain why.

To learn more about Medved, and how this politico turned movie critic turned politco/movie critic gained multi-media reach read Chapter 8 of The Right Frequency, available in August. You can pre-order an autographed copy at a 30% discount.

Rush Predicts 2012 Landslide and Says What Talk Host’s Job Is

April 29, 2012

During his program this week, Rush Limbaugh talked about a discussion he had with Republicans and political consultants, where he shocked them by predicting Mitt Romney will beat President Barack Obama in a landslide this year. Time will tell.

But Rush also talked about the reality of talk radio, and why it’s not about changing the world. Though, if it does, that’s nice to.

“Look, I’m not a professional at this,” Rush recalled telling the consultants. “I’m not a political scientist. Counting votes, securing votes, that’s not my business. My business is attracting an audience and holding the audience for as long as I can so I can charge confiscatory advertising rates, and that’s not the same thing as getting votes.  That being said, I think Obama’s gonna lose in a landslide.”

Rush Limbaugh, whose radio career analyzing politics began in 1988 at a Sacramento station, is considered by many to be as qualified — or more so — than any political scientist to pick election winners. Limbaugh career, and how he revolutionized talk radio, are detailed in Chapter 7 of The Right Frequency, to be released in August. Pre-order now for a 30% discount.