August 27th, 2010
01:16 PM ET
12 years ago

Democratic campaign chief blasts Glenn Beck rally

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Preparations continue in Washington for Saturday's rally to be held on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial."]Washington (CNN) - The Democrats' point man for holding onto the party's majority in the House admitted Friday that the reach and intensity of conservative talk radio and television will be a "challenge" this fall but said voters will be smart enough to see through the "outrageous rhetoric on the right."

Rep. Chris Van Hollen, the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, took specific aim at Fox News personality Glenn Beck, who is headlining a "Restoring Honor" rally in Washington this weekend alongside Sarah Palin.

The rally, to be held on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, is being billed as a "non-political event." Van Hollen called that claim nonsense.

"It's blatantly political," the Maryland Democrat said in an appearance at the National Press Club. "I mean, come on. You have seen Glenn Beck and a lot of the talk show hosts on Fox News out there talking about this election for the last 15 months since the day President Obama was elected president.

"You've had a constant tirade against the president, against Democratic efforts to get the economy turned around. Let's call it what it is. It's a blatant political effort."

Van Hollen's speech was an effort by top Democrats to dampen talk about a possible Republican takeover of the lower chamber and push back against House Minority Leader John Boehner, who delivered a major speech of his own this week to outline the GOP's agenda.

The DCCC chair rebutted talk that his party might lose control of the House, arguing that Republicans have nominated Tea Party candidates or "re-treads" from the Bush years who want to return to the "reckless fiscal policies of previous administration."

"I can assure you that despite the Washington summer political chatter, reports of the House Democrats demise are greatly exaggerated," he said.

Van Hollen acknowledged that much of the country's political energy is on the right, but argued that conservatives like Beck and Palin will damage the party in November by turning off independent voters.

"There is no doubt that there is a power to those voices, I would just ask the American people again to listen to where they are coming from," he said. "We just have to counter them by just trying to get the best information we can out there."

Van Hollen returned to his theory when asked about the Beck rally, saying that "Americans are going to be turned off by the outrageous rhetoric on the right."

"Conspiracy theories, rants, there is certainly an element of the electorate that is charged up by that," he said. "But again, I think it's a turn off to the sensible center and the people who constitute the key independent voters in these swing districts. They see that kind of stuff and they say, 'We don't want to go there.' The policies of the previous eight years of the Bush administration are bad enough," he continued. "These guys are way off on the right."

Filed under: 2010 • Chris Van Hollen • Fox News
soundoff (101 Responses)
  1. gt

    non pollitical... kind of like million man march,,,,, get over it ,, have your own rally... yea.. how about a rally for all the new jobs we have created the last 18 months,,, opps no one would show up... ugh....

    August 27, 2010 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  2. Lucas Breen

    Unfortunately, hate radio is very popular.

    August 27, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |

    Wah, Wah, baby DUMocRATS.......

    Can't hide the truth anymore about
    (1) The OBOZOCare program wihich is nothign more than a tax welfare billl

    (2) The record defeciit created by OBOZO and the DEM congress

    (3) Unemployment

    (4) Record spending

    (5) Increaese Taxes

    (6) Amnesty for illegals

    (7) ZERO progress on North Korea and Iran

    (8) ETC, ETC ETC

    August 27, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  4. NVa Native

    Beck and his followers are disgusting fools.

    August 27, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  5. Paul from Phoenix

    FUnny, I didn't hear them complain when Chris Matthews was talking about his tingling leg, or when Jon Stewart oppenly endorsed Kerry and Obama. I could do this forever.

    The fact is that dems have Fox News and Limbaugh as their targets for promoting conservative ideals. BUT the GOP has almost all newspapers, CNN, MSNBC (Which is as bad, if not worse then Fox News), ABC, CBS, NBC, College Professors, and Hollywood slamming them daily.

    Suck it up dems. All you are is whiners. You had 8 months of a filibuster proof congress and White House, and you did NOTHING!

    August 27, 2010 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  6. Bertina

    Is it not rather telling that the stage totally blocks the view of the Lincoln Memorial?

    August 27, 2010 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  7. ex-repulican since McCain picked Palin

    I am so glad people are starting to speak out against beck and palin and those that preach hate and lies.

    August 27, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  8. jay

    Who in their right mind would attend this freak show.

    August 27, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  9. Steve, New York City

    Beck's behavior is unbelievable – this is the loud-mouth hypocrit's way of saying to "anyone" who believed in Martin Luther King's message: "we hate you!"

    Maybe that over-sized, drug addict Rush Limbaugh will also show his face at the rally?

    Scary – the last time these dangerous extremists started hollering about government this, government that, the angry white man, blah blah – and two IDIOTS blew up a building in Oklahoma City. Now, they are eager to demonize all Muslims, and this has already led some fool to stab a New York City taxi driver. What will be the blow-back from Beck's stupid rally? They're just further instigating the culture war that Al Queada wanted to provoke through 9/11.

    August 27, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  10. Shawn-GA

    Very common for a Democrat to come out against something in a knee jerk reaction even before he /she has any idea what they are against.

    How many times are these folks going to make fools of themselves going on a tirade before facts??

    August 27, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  11. Marcus

    'The rally, to be held on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, is being billed as a "non-political event."'

    And to those who believe in that, I have a nice big farm of mine to sell to you (the maps says that it is located in the middle of the everglades but don't trust the maps, trust me)...
    Seriously, with Glenn Beck around they want to label it as 'non-political'?
    Who do they think they will fool?

    August 27, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  12. ed

    Rep. Chris Van Hollen = liar, dishonest, fraud!

    If you believe your own lies that does not make them the truth...

    August 27, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  13. DAW, NC

    Take back america rally, they are right to the 1930's or before, take back "rights rally, ie. civil rights. Take back america rally, yes take back and rewrite history to fit their message. sort of scary to think about who believes their venon.

    August 27, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  14. Rob

    Glenn Beck has splinters in the windmills of his mind.

    August 27, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  15. DI

    So what if it's political!

    August 27, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  16. Independent

    Whether or not you like Beck, I would think that restoring honor to Washington would be a good thing.
    Every time you turn around someones being investigated for this or that or flying across the world to cheat on his wife on taxpayers dollars!!
    The people who represent us should be the cream of the crop, the best we have to offer, but instead we have a bunch of power hungry people who don't give a damn about anybody but themselves.

    August 27, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  17. bbrooker

    In order to "restore honor" one must begin with personal integrity. As there is not even remotely one ounce of integrity coming from Beck and the right, the name of this rally should be "OBEY YOU MINDLESS FOOLS". In order to have integrity you have to be able to balance factual truth and opinion– Beck, Palin, Hannity- all opinion based on selective information.

    August 27, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  18. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Glen Beck and Sarah Palin have no honor. They're talking about restoring it, when they have none to begin with. I don't have respect for either one of them. When they can blatantly disrespect African-Americans in this way, it shows me their true colors. You know, it just may be a good idea for them to stay on the Mall, cause if the come to Southwest or anywhere else in D.C. besides the Mall, they are going to have a problem on their hands.

    August 27, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  19. dave from fresno,ca

    Did he say "the reckless fiscal ploicies of the previous administration"

    You have got to be kidding me!

    we will never be able to pay back what this regime has spent!

    August 27, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  20. barry

    Oh it's Van Hollen's job to keep the House & Senate? Well I think he is going to be looking for another job soon. Why do they let Fox News intimidate them so bad? The guy started right off with the victim crap. People are tired of hearing that. American voters will listen to your plan regardless of your party. When you don't deliver they take you out. Unfortunately the Democrats over promised and under delivered. It happens but it needs to be a learning experience for next time. When elected officials stop listening to people and feel they know what is best and the voter doesn't matter they lose their job. Same thing happens in the private sector. It just doesn't take as long.

    August 27, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  21. Joe Gaines

    Ms. Moose and Mr,. Bullmoose what a clown show hope all the air head kids show up

    August 27, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  22. Chris

    blow it down...

    August 27, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  23. Homer

    This idiot is claiming Glenn Becks rally will be political and he does not even know what the context of the rally is about. But since when does a liberal have to know what something is about, they have only to think its about something then try to besmirch it. They have limited vision and a lack of tolerance and cry racism when they cannot defend their points of view. I support Glenn Beck and I listen to his show and he has deliverately not told people what the theme is except its about the honor of this country. Go figure.

    August 27, 2010 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  24. steve

    Beck has a host of followers and does speak intelligently. I am guessing Palin is window dressing for him - why would anyone listen to anything Sarah Palin has to say? However, from an entertainment perspective I do find her mildly amusing.

    August 27, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  25. Rob

    HA! I forgot these guys were above restoring honor in our country. Maybe you should come find out what it is actually about instead of being a pseudo intellectual. After all how can you form an opinion on something that hasn't even happened yet?

    You guys are in the minority, and everyone sees through your ignorance.

    August 27, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
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