GOP Pollster Frank Luntz: ‘Alabama Is a Symptom of What’s Happening Around the Country’

He may be a pollster, but Frank Luntz isn’t prepared to call today’s special election in Alabama.

Luntz has been working to show the perspective of GOP voters in Alabama during the controversial election; the state will elect a senator today to fill Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ vacated seat. During a recent panel event covered by Vice News, Luntz moderated 12 conservative voters in Alabama as they discussed the allegations against GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore.

On today’s show, Glenn talked with Luntz about how Alabama voters are responding to the national focus on their election and analyzed their reasons for supporting Moore.

Here’s an excerpt from the interview.

Glenn: So, Frank tell me what you found in Alabama.

Frank: So, we found a very polarized and extremely excited, tense, passionate electorate that desperately wants to send a message to Washington — and to my greatest surprise: That message is coming just as hard to the Republican establishment as it is to the Democrats. There is as much criticism of the Republican leadership in Congress as there was their Democratic opponents. And this is among Republicans. That tells me that Alabama is a symptom of what’s happening across the country.

Glenn: And what’s happening across the country?

Frank: I think that people are just as fed up today as they were one year ago. I think that they’re disappointed with the rate of change in Washington — that the swamp has not been drained. And I think that they’re ready to say, ‘I’ve had it and I’m going to vote even more people out in the next election.’

Thankfully all the speculation will be over once this race is called, but that won't be the end of the drama.

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

GLENN: So if I had to -- if I could talk to only one person to try to figure out what America was thinking, that one person would be Frank Luntz. He runs Luntz Global, and you can find out all about it at FocuswithFrank.com. But he does things for businesses and politicians and everything else. When you're really trying to get a beat on what people are feeling, Frank is really good with his focus groups. And he's just been in Alabama. Welcome to the program, Frank Luntz. How are you?

FRANK: You're always the kindest person on the radio. I don't know if your listeners have ever met you before. But you've always been the kindest guy. And I'm not sure if that's your image. But --

GLENN: Yes, you do, Frank. If anybody knows my image, you would know my image.

STU: I thought you knew the people, Frank. You don't know that's not his image?

GLENN: That's clearly not my image.

(laughter)

So, Frank, tell me what you found in Alabama.

FRANK: So we found a very polarized and extremely excited, intense, passionate electorate that desperately wants to send a message to Washington. And to my greatest surprise, that message is coming just as hard to the Republican establishment, as it is to the Democrats.

There is as much criticism of the Republican leadership in Congress as there was their Democratic opponent. And this is among Republicans. And that tells me that Alabama is a symptom of what's happening across the country.

GLENN: And what's happening across the country?

FRANK: I think people are just as fed up today as they are one year ago. I think they're disappointed with the rate of change in Washington that the swamp has not been drained, and I think that they're ready to say, I've had it. And I'm going to vote even more people out in the next election.

GLENN: So, Frank, the -- the idea that Alabama has to vote for somebody who is accused of improprieties and possibly worse, 20 years ago, and a guy who is abortion on demand, it's really, truly the lesser of two evils. And, you know, for God-fearing people, you know, abortion is more evil than somebody doing something 20 years ago.

Do I have that right or wrong?

FRANK: You have it right. But I'd be careful. Because that's not -- they will not let themselves be caught saying that. What they're saying that it is all evil, that it all needs to change, and that is the guy, Roy Moore, in their minds, this is the guy who they think is most likely to shake the hell out of Washington, DC.

GLENN: So what do they feel about his -- the accusations?

FRANK: They don't think they're true. They don't think that they're real. They think that is woman who have been paid by --

GLENN: Gloria Allred or the left or whoever.

FRANK: Or even what's his name?

GLENN: Soros?

FRANK: Soros and the Democrats. They think that America is under attack, is under siege. And they desperately want to send a message, enough is enough. And they want to do it in an emotional way.

GLENN: So what do you think this means, Frank, assuming that Roy Moore wins? Do you think he's going to win?

FRANK: I can't -- you know, I've never -- in my professional life, I've never held back a -- a projection. I've always felt that I should speak up because that's my job, as a poster is to know what's going to happen. I can't do it this time. Glenn, I just don't know. I don't believe any of the polls. I think someone is going to look really foolish when the election is over.

GLENN: Yeah, I've never seen -- have you seen a 20-point spread in polls?

FRANK: Never. And there was a spread during Clinton. But the spread during Clinton is a ten-point spread. It means that an awful lot of people are lying to pollsters right now. And that's because they're afraid of the pressure. This essence of political correctness, which is the thing that I urge you to address -- I urge you on your shows going forward to talk about it, because it is poisoning our students' minds. It is poisoning the public debate, that we can no longer say what we truly believe of our fear that it will hurt us, professionally or personally.

GLENN: But how do you -- you know, Frank, I would love to have you on for an extended period of time, because I think you can teach us so much. And I mean the audience in America. How do you have that conversation when millennials are saying that, you know, there should be safe zones, there should be limits on speech.

FRANK: Right. But those are by their definitions, safe zones. So that you're not allowed to ask the question, why does a murderer in California who shouldn't even be in this country, why does that person get let off? You can't have a conversation about border security. But on the same token, Glenn, you also can't say, why is there such negativity in this tweeting? Why can't we tweet each other with respect as we are criticizing each other for beliefs that we don't share?

I think that the coarseness of our culture has been so -- so destroyed by social media, that the ability to talk to each other in a tough, but respectful way, is gone.

It's not that it's going. It's gone.

STU: Frank, you and I have seen each other at some really low points. We've seen each other, where I've come to you, Frank, help me. I have no hope left.

Have you found -- have you found hope in all of the polling?

FRANK: No. Not at all. I'm in the worst place I've ever been in my professional life internally. I don't really want to have this conversation with a million people. But no. I don't.

Because I understand the Trump voter, who is desperate to save his or her country.

GLENN: Yeah.

FRANK: I understand the feeling of African-Americans who don't want to go back to the 1950s and '60s, because that was a bad time for them in this country. I understand those who came from other countries legally, but they're being demonized by the illegal population. I get millennials, who are nervous about where the country is headed. They see the fires and they see the hurricanes and they see the weather, and they wonder what's going on.

I hear all of this. And I appreciate it. But the truth is, most people don't. They see what they want to see, and they disregard the rest.

GLENN: Is there a way in this world of social media, is there a way to come back together? Is there a message that will bring us together? Because I feel exactly the same way, Frank. I really, truly believe that the vast majority of people feel this way. They're tired of this. They don't want to live like this. They don't want to be at each other's throats.

FRANK: Well, two things, one is -- this is a plug. But not really. I want to hear from those people. And if they go to Luntz Global, which is my website, they can sign up for the focus groups that you talk about, they can sign up and their voices can be heard, and there won't be any shouting. And there won't be any disrespect.

They'll get a chance to be heard, and they'll get a chance to learn from others. But the other thing is, I want them to see this Vice News HBO clip. And all you have to do is go on YouTube, type in Alabama, and my name. And they'll see the entire seven and a half minutes. Some of it should shock you. Should shock them. By how --

GLENN: What shock -- tell me about it.

FRANK: -- explicit they are.

A simple question, a 14-year-old, one of the people said his grandmother was married when she was 13 and she had two kids by the time she was 15, that there are a lot of people who would be proud that their daughter of that age was dating a district attorney.

I -- I don't get that. That doesn't compute to me. And I don't care if that's 2017 or you're referring to 20 or 30 years ago, it ain't right. It just isn't.

And --

GLENN: But, you know, that's the one thing -- I keep coming back, Frank, to Jerry Lee Lewis, he married his 13-year-old cousin. And nobody in the South had a problem with that.

FRANK: Well, they did have a problem with it. You know this.

GLENN: No, no, no. They had a problem with it in England, and that's what really tore everything apart.

FRANK: Well, he would have been -- I think he would have been as big as Elvis.

GLENN: I do too.

FRANK: That man was one of the greatest piano players. And by the way, he played here in LA three weeks ago. And even in his 80s, the man is brilliant. But he never had the career that he could have had because outside his home area, Americans found that too much to take.

GLENN: Correct. Correct. Outside of his home area. But his home area -- and this is really kind of -- you know, the same kind of area that Roy Moore is from. I mean, it's different, especially back then.

FRANK: But does that make it okay?

GLENN: No.

FRANK: There was segregation back then. Does that make it okay?

GLENN: No.

FRANK: So that's the issue that I have. I know we cannot judge. I've been through this with so many people with these conversations. We cannot judge values and morals by today's standards, looking back 40 years ago. Because we think differently. And we act differently. But that said, I don't feel like we've learned what we should have learned. I don't feel like we have that same commonality that existed in this country years ago. I think there's so much more that divides us than unites us, and we're looking for those divisions. We're seeking to tear ourselves apart. And that's frightening to me.

GLENN: What is the biggest thing we have in common?

FRANK: Well, biggest thing is appreciation for the country. But I will tell you right now that one out of five Americans isn't patriotic anymore. One out of five Americans does not feel that this is the greatest country on the earth, does not feel that our system is the best system. And that's different. That was the one thing that united us 25 years ago. Under Reagan's administration, we all thought that even with our imperfections, we were still the best. That exceptionalism is gone in one out of five Americans.

GLENN: And out of those one out of five Americans, what do they think is the best?

FRANK: They just believe --

GLENN: Anything better?

FRANK: No. They won't give anything better, but they refuse to accept American exceptionalism. By the way, they do tend to vote Democrat a lot more than they vote Republican. But I don't want to bring partisanship into this. When you can't even agree on your country's values, then we're in deep trouble.

GLENN: Have you tested the Bill of Rights?

FRANK: Yes.

GLENN: How are those testing? Those principles?

FRANK: It's really weird. It's like, have you tested mom and apple pie?

GLENN: Right. Right.

FRANK: Well, the first problem is that Americans don't even know what the Bill of Rights are. They don't know the three systems of government. We have more people in this country who believe that UFOs believe than that believe Social Security will exist when they retire. We have more people in this country that can name the home of the Simpsons than where Abraham Lincoln was born. More people can name more Kardashians, than can name members of the Supreme Court.

All of that scared the living hell of me because we know our pop culture absolutely to the last detail and we know nothing about our Founding Fathers.

GLENN: Frank Luntz. He is the founder and chairman of Luntz Global. I urge you to go with -- go to FocuswithFrank.com. And sign up for some of his testing. He is -- he is one of the best listeners.

He is truly empathetic. And can hear beyond the words. I think he is -- quite honestly, I think he is a solution to many of the things that ail us, if more people will speak honestly and more people like Frank will listen.

Please go to FocuswithFrank.com. And sign up to be part of his focus groups. FocuswithFrank.com. Frank Luntz, always a pleasure and a privilege to have you on the program. Thank you, sir.

FRANK: Thank you.

On the radio program Monday, Glenn Beck, Stu Burguiere, and Pat Gray discussed the Trump defense team's arguments in the Senate impeachment trial against President Donald Trump.

"This is different than what the Democrats were doing," Glenn said of the Trump team's impeachment defense. "We know the case of the Democrats, they just kept going over and over and over, for three days, the same stuff. The Republicans, at least on Saturday, did not ... and I thought it was really, really good."

Glenn added, "The president's defense was very compelling."

Watch the videos below to hear Glenn's top takeaways from the president's defense team:

Part 1: Why the president's defense is 'very compelling'

Part 2: Top takeaways from president's impeachment defense

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Americans are getting crushed by healthcare costs. In 2018 alone, we spent $3.6 trillion on healthcare — that's more than $11,000 per American and nearly a fifth of the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It's on everyone's minds, which is why it has taken center stage in the Democratic party's primary. Of course, the solutions offered by the current crop of presidential candidates would do nothing to help alleviate that enormous spending. In fact, it would only add to it — what with Bernie Sanders' Medicare for All and Joe Biden's proposed ObamaCare expansion.

However, what also deserves attention in discussions about plans that increase the government's role in health care is how religious organizations would be affected. Faith-based hospitals and health care sharing ministries (HCSMs) play an important role in America, often serving as a critical provider and/or facilitator of payments for medical services in many states. If plans like Medicare for All were implemented, these groups would be at risk of going bankrupt or being severely curtailed due to the elimination of choice that comes with these proposals.

Instead of imposing a top-down and expensive health care system overhaul, faith-based providers and groups should be allowed to continue offering a variety of plans that work as high-quality, often cheaper alternatives. And more Americans should consider them.

Instead of imposing a top-down and expensive health care system overhaul, faith-based providers and groups should be allowed to continue offering a variety of plans that work as high-quality, often cheaper alternatives.

As mentioned, one such option is a health care sharing ministry. In this model, individuals contribute money into a pool managed by a religiously or ethically-affiliated organization, and costs for medical treatment are shared by people who adhere to that organization's belief system. Typically, applicants are required to sign a statement of faith in order to be accepted. It's basically like a subscription service: consumers pay a set amount of money into the ministry every month. Then, when they have a medical need or incident, they submit a claim to the ministry. Members whose claims are approved are reimbursed by the ministry from that pool of funds. Note, these ministries don't cover procedures they deem immoral.

Because providers are often getting paid in cash under this model — and typically within 90 days — patients are able to negotiate significant discounts, in some cases slicing procedures' costs to a fraction of the initial price. Insurance companies, by comparison, tend to not pay dollar for dollar on claims, and certainly not in cash. Additionally, insurance companies usually have onerous paperwork requirements, forcing doctors to spend half of their time on electronic health records and desk work. This increase in demand for administrative work is partly responsible for the United States leading the world in administrative costs in healthcare.

There are various types of HCSMs, each offering different benefits depending on what the individual needs — and a lot of savings on monthly plans. Take Christian Healthcare Ministries, for example. It's resulted in enormous savings for its members. Whereas the average healthcare plan can cost about $400 a month on the low end (with high deductibles), CHM plans can run between $78-172 a month for a single person. These kinds of plans are particularly great options for people who are relatively healthy and young, where the need for doctors and prescription drugs is less likely.

HCSMs have seen explosive growth in popularity recently. In 2014, there were only approximately 160,000 members. By 2018, membership ballooned to about 1 million HCSM members around the United States who have shared over $1 billion in medical expenses. But unfortunately, many people still feel locked into the traditional — and expensive — health care insurance model. HCSMs provide a way out, and, depending on their belief system, people should research them and see if there's one that best suit their needs. If more people deviate away from the traditional health care insurance market, insurance companies would be incentivized to adjust their pricing. That won't be possible, of course, if plans like Medicare for All are implemented.

Health care is one of life's biggest expenses, and voters are understandably desperate for a plan that cuts costs without compromising quality of care or access to it. Alternative options to health care insurance such as HCSMs are practical, free-market solutions that saves money. Americans should sift through these options before subscribing to plans that will only break the bank.

James Czerniawski is a Young Voices contributor. Follow him on Twitter @JamesCz19.

Bill O'Reilly: Adam Schiff is in 'wonderland' during the Senate impeachment trial

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On the "Glenn Beck Radio Program" Friday, Bill O'Reilly gave his latest take on the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, and explained why he thinks House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) is like "Alice in Wonderland."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

youtu.be


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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Friday to discuss the latest developments in the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

According to Cruz, Thursday was a "very consequential day" in the otherwise tedious and redundant impeachment proceedings.

"Yesterday, the House managers effectively threw Joe Biden under the bus," Cruz said. "They doubled down on what they started doing on the first day of arguments, which was making their entire case ... based on the proposition that there was zero evidence to justify investigating Burisma [the Ukrainian natural gas company that paid then-Vice President Joe Biden's son, Hunter, $50,000 a month to sit on the board]."

Cruz went on to explain that every time the Democrats, namely House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), rehash the "zero-evidence" argument, they open the door for Republicans to present the overwhelming evidence that contradicts those claims.

"That proposition, that there's zero evidence to investigate Burisma, is utterly and completely absurd. So, I'm looking forward to Saturday when the president's lawyers will begin presenting his case. Because what the Democrats have done, is they have opened the door to this. And I hope the president's lawyers will stand up and systematically lay out the case," Cruz said.

"They've been arguing that Hunter Biden is completely irrelevant to this case. Well, the House managers have now, through their arguments, made Hunter Biden not only relevant — he was always relevant — but critical now," he continued. "They built the entire case, like a house of cards, on the proposition that there was no reasonable basis to investigate Burisma. And that's just absurd."

The two also discussed Cruz's new podcast, "Verdict with Ted Cruz," which he records with Daily Wire host Michael Knowles each night following the Senate trial.

"Last night's podcast went through systematically ... all of the overwhelming evidence of corruption from Burisma that any president, not only had the authority to investigate, but the responsibility to investigate," Cruz said. "And that, ultimately, is why President Trump is going to be acquitted at the end of this process."

Watch the video below for more details:

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