August 27th, 2010
01:16 PM ET
13 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. Eric

    Yes, how dare a conservative actually have a voice!
    How dare they actually wish to exercise their First Amendment rights of free speech and free assembly!

    We are the 1984 Big Brother Socialists!
    We know what's best for you!

    Shut up!
    Be happy!
    Obey all orders without question!
    The comfort you've demanded is now mandatory!
    Be happy!
    At last, everything is now done for you!
    (HT to Jello Biafra and Ice-T)

    August 27, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  2. Rick McDaniel

    Not any more outrageous than the rhetoric, and ineptness, on the left.

    August 27, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. Jennifer

    Racist, racist, all the hatemongers will join him of course. They all hate to see a Blackman in power. If God were like man, he would strike them for their wicked ways. Christianity is being destroyed by these people in the name of politics. I pray and hope that the smart people of
    American will reject these evil people and pray to the true and living God for guidance. These are dark and hard days for us and these haters who are filthy rich are playing on our emotions. Dear Lord
    open the eyes of the innocent, let them see these people for what they are and run from them... Mr. Beck do us a favor and stay away from Martin Luther King. It was your race who cause his rough life and death.

    August 27, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  4. AEJ

    Restoring honor" after BECK AND FOX NEWS – if you can call their reporting news – damage the airwaves with lies, bigotry, racial tones, slander, etc.



    August 27, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. JFK

    "Restoring Honor"? Thats a joke! The best thing we can do to Restore Honor to our country is to ignore radical right wing extremists who would rather destroy this great country with their hate agenda than to help it. Every time they circulate their distorted and ignorant emails further perpetuates our countries degradation. Chain emails and extremist websites dont qualify as facts! Last thing we need are more Timothy McVeighs who wrap themselves in the flag to justify their hatred of the system.

    August 27, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  6. AEK

    I was going to post on this story today but got a message from before I could start!

    Actually, after the dishonorable legacy of the Bush administration and the rest of the right wingers like him, Mr. Beck is correct that we need to return to a time when the United States of America is again a respected entity in the world. Of course that will mean recognizing that 1.3 billion of those world residents follow the faith of Islam. Many of those same people yearn for the freedoms of speech and religion for which our country is a pillar because they are being persecuted in their own countries for the sect of Islam they follow.

    August 27, 2010 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  7. Djinn

    The real question for me is will Beck take a big paycheck from the Koch brothers to fake his own assassination and become a martyr for the lunatic right-wing repugnican ideologues that have been drawn out of the fringe for this election.

    August 27, 2010 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  8. stevegee

    All across the country, people are angry with what Obama and the Democrats have shoved down our throats like Cod Liver Oil - take your Socialist medicine, it'll be good for you.

    We The People reject their liberal agenda. That's why in November there will be a landslide victory for conservatives and Republicans the likes this country has never seen. And then, Obama will nothing more than a lame-duck mistake, who can then spend the remainder of his term golfing and vacationing.

    Wake up people! Vote with honor: vote American, vote Republican.

    August 27, 2010 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  9. False and Biased brought to you by the GOP

    The right cannot talk about the issues because their "solutions" are regurgitated GOP policy from 20 years ago that didn't work then and won't work now. Few people are fooled by the "tax cuts fix everything and anything" mantra anymore. So, the right has sunk to the level of promoting hatred and division between various groups in our country hoping that the anger and hatred that they drum up will help them regain power. The extreme right such as Beck are disgusting in their blatant fanning of the flames of bigotry and division. The GOP want their base (white christians) to hate gays, muslims, immigrants, and the poor. I am a white christian who finds Beck's behavior very far from what the God he claims to serve would want. I am not voting for the party of hate and division and will not until they stop using these tactics to gain power and start addressing the issues, such as the economy and education, that will move our country forward. Beck simply wants to take us backward to the days of hate and discrimination.

    August 27, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  10. ryan smith

    What a biased one sided article!

    They didn't even give beck a chance to state his position for the reader to discern the truth! Just the dems viewpoint....

    Who in this country is against people being judged by their merit and restoring integrity to politicians!?!

    Becks the only person out there who IS making any sensen despite the clammoring of liberal opposition and left wing media influence.

    August 27, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |

    All I can say is Amen brother.

    Vote NO in NOvember to the party of NO.

    August 27, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  12. Peter E

    Yes, I'm sure Beck declaring himself to be a prophet of God and likening himself to King, Lincoln, or perhaps even Moses will gain a LOT of support from the average American. Because after the huge repression of privileged white people across America it takes Beck to save them from the encroaching minorities and the democratically elected government. How dare democracy intrude on their God-given freedom to be selfish, paranoid, and greedy? How dare democracy intrude on the superiority of the downtrodden white man...

    August 27, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  13. obama victim

    isn't it entertaing to watch the dems slowly twisting in the wind...watching it all slip away??

    August 27, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |

    Too bad it takes media personalities to Restore Honor; this is something the US government should do but has failed. Thank you, Mr Beck.

    August 27, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  15. Limbaugh is a liberal

    And I'm sure Foxnews itself will keep its hands off, just like it did for the Tea Parties... the Tea Parties they helped organize, fund, advertise, and crammed down our throats. And every single word of which was directed against democrats and our president.
    It's not political...

    August 27, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  16. Leah24

    I'm amazed at the offense that people are taking to a mosque several blocks away from ground 0 but the same people see nothing wrong with beck shitting on a historic moment in history by pushing his subliminal racism on the same date and place of mlks racial unity message

    August 27, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  17. ehwilson429

    tell me, why does Van Hollen have this job?

    August 27, 2010 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  18. dallas tx

    from the NPR article: "This is the guy who has a whole history, going back in Top 40 radio, of using racist jokes, racist humor, making fun of police brutality, and with a very deep hatred for black social justice activists," Zaitchik says. Beck stood by his claim that Obama is a "racist" and has frequently referred to the president's initiatives — including health care — as "reparations."

    August 27, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    how can cnn keep going if they continue to do "no complete coverage,"
    if you are afraid of beck or happy to see all of your ratingsgo down tthan i must compliment you on doing a masterful job

    August 27, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  20. Jim

    Whats Van Hollon afraid off? A litle fresh air after 15 months of hope and change not happening. Running a little afraid? Lets see how this all turns out. Keep telling us that the conservatives are all crazies out there. Our president is pathetically over his head.

    August 27, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  21. GI Joe

    Is that a gay rainbow flag that Beck LUVS? He'll be out of the closet in a year or two - maybe he and Limbaugh can be luvers.

    August 27, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  22. C Smith

    This is so unbelievably distasteful. Still want to tell us that Republicans arent racist?

    August 27, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  23. Right Leaning Independent

    Cry Van Hollen Cry!!! You jealous Liberals hate FOX because you have no network with their ratings. And the reason for this is.... because there are more Conservative Americans than Liberals... So keep on crying. It makes me happy to know that Beck and Fox are under your skin!!!!!!

    August 27, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  24. Tom in Delaware

    I'm sure the Obama administration's annoucemnet today to put on hol (2nd time) the Military Tribunal for the bombers of the USS Cole will go over really well with the American Public.

    Another disaster for the Democrats....and the hits just keep on comin'.

    August 27, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  25. Lisa P

    Glenn Beck has no honor. He's just another anti-American terrorist sent out by the Fox News madrassa.

    August 27, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
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