Rush Limbaugh, the most widely followed conservative radio host, rejected a report by Republican National Committee, or RNC, on Monday that calls for the GOP to rebrand itself and reach out to minorities so as to not appear out of touch with the general public and prevent another election loss.
If anything, Limbaugh said, the GOP lost the election because it is just not far enough to the right.
“The Republicans are just totally bamboozled right now, and they are entirely lacking in confidence, which is what happens to every political party after an election in which they think they got shellacked,” Limbaugh said on his radio show. “They think they got landslided, and they didn’t, but they’re acting like they did, and they think they did.”
“The Republican Party lost because it’s not conservative,” he later added. “It didn’t get its base out in the 2012 election.”
The radio host also said moving farther to the right maybe an uphill task for Republicans because “the establishment in Washington, the ruling class, both parties, is not conservative, and in fact they fear it.”
“They’re very much worried about it because it’s considered an outsider movement,” Limbaugh said. “So they kicked the Tea Party out, they try to de-emphasize the Tea Party, don’t use it, let’s put it that way. They did not use the asset that the Tea Party provided them. The principles here are timeless, but go back now and redefine your principles and the message, and it’s not it. It isn’t that hard.”
According to the RNC’s Growth and Opportunity Project report, the perception among people is that Republicans do not care about them and only talk about policies that don't resonate with voters, while Democrats discuss people.
Respondents to the RNC’s survey also confirmed what other post-election surveys did – that the party is “scary,” “narrow-minded,” and “out of touch” and filled with “stuffy old men.”
“Our ideas can sound distant and removed from people’s lives,” the report read. “Instead of connecting with voters’ concerns, we too often sound like bookkeepers. We need to do a better job connecting people to our policies.
“We are the Party of private-sector economic growth because that is the best way to create jobs and opportunity. That is the best way to help people earn an income, achieve success and take care of their families,” it continued. “But if we are going to grow as a Party, our policies and actions must take into account that the middle class has struggled mightily and that far too many of our citizens live in poverty. To people who are flat on their back, unemployed or disabled and in need of help, they do not care if the help comes from the private sector or the government – they just want help.”
But in a message to the GOP on Tuesday, Limbaugh told the Republicans that people don’t hate them because of who they are but what is being said about them.
“Now, the Republican Party’s overall problem is it’s got a problem with expressing conservatism,” he said. “The mainstream of the Republican Party doesn’t like it, they’re a little bit nervous about it. If they could just come to grips with there’s nothing wrong with conservatism. People love conservatism.”
“The Republicans have an image problem and what they’re gonna have to do is change the way they are talked about,” Limbaugh added. “They don’t have to change who they are.”