13 Questions with Scott Rasmussen



In Search of Self-Governance


~ Scott W. Rasmussen

1. Despite being an independent pollster for more than a decade, and despite Rasmussen Reports being the most accurate polling outfit in the last 2 major elections - Democrats have recently attempted to marginalize you as a basically a GOP hit man. What's your take on the claim, and on being made a political target?

When there’s bad news, some people like to shoot the messenger. If you want to be an independent voice in politics today, you need a thick skin.

As with most things in life, it’s helpful to keep it in perspective. It’s not personal, it’s political. Much of the spin against us comes from a pretty small group. Other Democrats, including pollsters for Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, have praised and continue to praise our work. Also, according to the New York Times magazine, current White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel gets updates on our work and takes action.

The bottom line is that most analysts recognize the attacks for what they are and also recognize the quality of our work.

2. Your book is focused on self governance, and on the things that unite America rather than divide it. Do you see any indications that America can actually break the cycle of partisan politics? The current political class is committed to partisan bickering. However, most Americans have a healthier perspective and I am an optimist by nature. So I believe the American people will eventually win and teach the politicians to behave.

In the book, I note that if parents ever found Little League players behaving as poorly as Congress, they’d disband the team and maybe even bulldoze the field.

Most of us have come to believe that the political system is broken, that most politicians are corrupt, and that neither major political party has the answers. The American people may disagree vehemently about specific policy issues, but we share a common belief that things work best when the people are in charge.

Sooner or later, that sentiment will carry the day.

3. What inspired you to write the book? I’m proud to be an American and proud of our great national heritage—a heritage built upon freedom, liberty, and the belief that the people should rule their rulers. I am grateful for those who have given their lives defending our freedoms and thankful for those who defend us still today.

Self-governance is about far more than politics and government. It requires a lot of the American people and it has nothing to do with the petty partisan games played by Republicans and Democrats. Unfortunately, even after more than 200 years of success, there is now an urgent need to defend this most basic of American values.

Recently, our polling found that just 21% of voters believe our government has the consent of the governed. That’s horrific… and it presents a real crisis of legitimacy for our government regardless of whether Republicans or Democrats are in charge. If the government cannot regain the consent of the governed, our nation’s best days are certainly behind us. We can’t let that happen.

4. Is it possible for America to get back to self-governance, considering more people than ever are receiving some form of government assistance? Absolutely. I have no doubt that self-governance can be restored.

But it’s hard to outline a specific path so I draw encouragement from our heritage and history. While things look bleak today, they are certainly not as bleak as when the colonies were contemplating challenging the mightiest military force in the world during the 1770s. Our situation may be challenging, but the political dynamics today are certainly not as challenging as they were for women who couldn’t vote and were seeking the right to vote.

Are there enough people willing to give up their piece of the government pie? The American people are far more willing than their politicians to make reasonable decisions. And, millions of Americans are already acting on their own in ways the politicians can’t imagine. People today are planning for retirement without counting on Social Security. They are not acting politically, they are acting responsibly in a self-governing manner. Over time, these individual actions will create an environment where the political solutions become apparent.

5. What are the essential areas that will help get America moving on a path toward self-governance and away from dependence?

The first step is to recognize that self-governance means a lot more than the formal powers of politics and government. In a self-governing society, the most important decisions—about faith, jobs, family—are made by individuals. When something needs to be done in a community, people get together and do it. We help govern businesses by going to places that treat us well and avoiding those that don’t. Millions of responsible actions undertaken every day by ordinary Americans are what really govern our society. While government has an important role to fill in this mix, it’s a support role rather than the lead role.

6. Drawing from your vast polling experience, who would win a head to head poll for president: Glenn Beck or The Sham-Wow guy?

They both can hold an audience, they have something to offer...but only one can win..so, who is it? One of the great things about being a pollster is we don’t guess about things without data!

7. Any polls recently that completely shocked you?

I already mentioned the poll showing that just 21% believe our government has the consent of the governed. Also, a poll showing that just 53% say capitalism is better than socialism. When we explored things a bit, we found that nearly 80% prefer a free market economy over a government managed system. But many don’t equate free markets with capitalism.

The bailouts are partly to blame for the discrepancy. Many people have come to believe that capitalism means that large companies keep the profit when times are good and get bailed out by taxpayers when they fail. In addition to the dollars, most Americans are offended by that approach because smaller companies and individuals are held accountable for their mistakes. Large companies, if they’re well connected enough, seem able to avoid paying for their mistakes. Roughly 70% of Americans now believe that government and big business work together against the rest of us.

8. Over 70% of people want Democrats to start from scratch on healthcare reform. Obviously conservatives hate this bill, but 70% means a significant portion on the left hate it too. What do those on the left not like about it?

Most Americans, of all political persuasions, want health care reform. They are looking primarily for something that will reduce the cost of care without harming the quality of care. Two-thirds think that increasing competition is the best way to control costs.

But, support for the legislation before Congress has broken down along partisan lines. Democrats and liberals overwhelmingly support it. Republicans, unaffiliated voters, moderates, and conservatives are opposed.

Looked at from a different perspective, those who favor a single-payer health care system are in favor of the legislation and those who don’t want a single payer system are opposed.

9. Given Obama's recent drop in approval, do you think there is a chance he could actually lose in 2012? Is there anyone out there popular enough to pull it off?

Barack Obama is more likely than any other individual at this point to win the 2012 election, but there is a reasonable chance he could lose as well. The reality is that we have no way of knowing what his chances are until after the mid-term elections this year. The President is going through a tough stretch right now, but he may adapt after the mid-terms. How he adapts will be the most important factor of the 2012 election.

In terms of who could be popular enough to challenge Obama, it’s important to remember that in early 2006 hardly anyone had heard of Obama. There’s a good chance that the next nominee of the Republican Party is somebody currently unknown to most Americans.

10. The left claims your favorable polls on Obama are always worse than the rest, and that you do it on purpose. How do you respond to that claim?

Rasmussen Reports polls about the President’s Job Approval among Likely Voters. Gallup, the only other firm doing daily tracking, measures the President’s approval among all adults. Under just about any circumstance, the President will do 3-5 points better among adults than among Likely Voters. As a result, our raw numbers are 3-5 points lower than Gallup’s. But they show the same trend and we believe the political realities are better measured by surveying Likely Voters.

Why do Likely Voter surveys show lower support for the president than surveys of all adults? Because young people and minorities—groups who strongly support the President—are less likely to vote than other Americans.

11. Do you ever get hatemail from the right?

All the time. We got tons such mail routinely during 2008 from people who were mad because we showed Obama beating McCain. We got in 2006, especially as we began to suggest that Democrats would win control of the Senate. Right now, the tides are flowing in the other direction and a lot of Democrats are unhappy. What’s amazing to me is that the fan bases of the two political teams react in such a similar manner. If we show one candidate gaining, people from the other team complain. Then, when the numbers shift, the other side complains. But the language and tone is pretty similar from both sides (and often pretty offensive).

12. What do your polls show Americans know about the state of our economy. Do they believe the President, who says the worst is behind us? Or are they changing their ways, simplifying, and bracing for the worst?

Americans are less pessimistic about the economy than they were a year ago, but most still believe we’re in a recession and that it’s going to last a long time. While perceptions of the overall economy have become less negative, there has been little change in perceptions of personal finances. People have come to believe it will take longer to recover than they ever imagined.

And the basic underpinnings of our system have been called into question. There was a time when “everybody” knew that they way to invest was to buy a home and let it grow in value. Now, just 53% believe their home is worth more than the mortgage.

Most Americans believe that cutting taxes is good for the economy and that cutting government spending is good for the economy. Few expect either of those things to happen.

Nearly half of all Americans expect their taxes to go up during the Obama years despite the oft-repeated campaign pledge to cut taxes for 95% of all Americans.

13. What is the one thing you want people to take from your book?

I want people to have hope because our nation is still yearning for hope and change. Unfortunately, if we rely on the politicians to bring about the change, there is no hope.

From the book...

Fortunately, in America, the politicians aren’t nearly as important as they think they are.

Despite the failures in the political world, two centuries of history has embedded self-governance deep into the soul of Americans from coast-to-coast.

We are all “created equal and endowed by [our] Creator with certain unalienable Rights.” Those rights include “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Because we can rely on our friends, our neighbors, and our nation’s historic commitment to self-governance, we can be confident about the future.

The American people can defeat the political and corporate elites who want to rule over us. We can secure the blessings of freedom for our children and grandchildren.

It will take a lot of work, and a temporary surge in public participation, but there is no reason to believe that self-governance in America will be defeated by the current crop of politicians.

In U.S. history, every generation has done something to leave the nation a little better off than the way they found it. For our generation, the challenge is to give the United States a “new birth of freedom” so that “government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.”

Our children and our grandchildren are counting on us.

The Senate Judiciary Committee was set to vote on subpoenas to compel Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify on alleged censorship and bias across their platforms. But that all changed when Republican committee members "expressed reservation about the maneuver," Politico reports.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who chairs Judiciary's Subcommittee on the Constitution, was definitely not one of the committee members with cold feet. On the radio program Tuesday, he told Glenn Beck that he's fighting "vociferously" to ensure Dorsey and others testify before the November 3rd election.

"Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg are both going to testify. They're are going to testify in person. They're going to testify before Election Day. That's what I think should happen," Cruz said. "That's what I'm fighting vociferously to happen. Right now, the companies are negotiating with the chairman's office to discuss terms to come voluntarily. I don't give a damn whether they come voluntarily or under subpoena. They need to testify in person and answer questions for the American people about why they are trying to steal this election, to suppress the free speech, and to censor the press."

The subpoenas would require Big Tech leaders to testify on the alleged "suppression and/or censorship" of two consecutive blockbuster stories from the New York Post. The first story was about emails that allegedly came from Hunter Biden's computer which are currently being investigated by the FBI, and the second was based on additional emails that allegedly showed communist China directly offering millions of dollars to then-Vice President Joe Biden.

"Big Tech stepped in, and they've done something they've never done before," Cruz explained. "We know that Big Tech has been censoring individual conservatives, trying to suppress conservative speech. But the step they took here is, they blocked if any individual user tried to share either of the New York Post stories, [they] were blocked ... Sharing a news story, from a major media outlet is part of democracy, part of free speech. And not only that, they blocked the New York Post itself. Right now, today, the New York Post is not being allowed to post its own damn stories on corruption. This is ridiculous. It's a threshold that's never been crossed before, of Silicon Valley oligarchs declaring the authority to determine what the press is allowed to report, and who is allowed to see it."

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If we learned nothing from the media over the past 4 years it's that colluding with a foreign entity to either win an election or for personal gain is absolutely grotesque. Well, that depends on whether you have a (D) or (R) before your name anyway. President Trump was impeached on rumor and innuendo yet Joe Biden has all but skated on his corruption up to this point.

Below is a timeline that shows the level of corruption and the lengths the Biden's went to in order to build that family's wealth and influence internationally.

2009

In 2009, Joe Biden was the brand-new Vice President and John Kerry was a U.S. Senator. Just five months after Joe was sworn in, his son Hunter, and Kerry's stepson, Christopher Heinz, formed an international private equity firm called Rosemont Capital. It had several different branches, including one called Rosemont Seneca Partners.

2010

Just nine months after Rosemont Seneca opened its doors, Hunter Biden went to China for meetings with executives from China's biggest banks, and its sovereign wealth and social security funds. That's unheard-of access for a brand-new firm. Was it just coincidence that at the same time Hunter was meeting these Chinese bigwigs, his dad was meeting with China's then-president Hu Jintao in Washington DC at a nuclear security summit?

2011

In May 2011, Joe Biden met with Chinese officials for the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue conference in Washington. Just two weeks later, Hunter Biden went to Taiwan for meetings with the same Chinese financial giants he'd met in China in 2010, plus some new ones.

2013

By December 2013, Joe Biden was enjoying his second term as VP, and John Kerry was now Secretary of State. That's when Joe traveled to Beijing on an extended official trip and Hunter traveled with him on Air Force Two.

During their stay, Vice President Biden met with President Xi and Hunter was mostly out of sight. We don't know exactly what he was up to, but the deal finalized between Rosemont Seneca and the Bank of China just ten days after the Bidens' trip pretty much gives it away. The most powerful financial institution in China formed a joint venture with tiny Rosemont Seneca to create a giant new investment firm called Bohai Harvest RST – the "RS" stands for Rosemont Seneca.

The firm is often called "BHR" for short.

Hunter Biden was a member of the Board. Remember, the Bank of China is government-owned, which means its business is completely intertwined with the goals of the Chinese Communist Party. BHR also got the freedom to operate in the newly created Shanghai Free-Trade Zone where, over the next six years, it would use $2.5 billion of Chinese government money to invest in China, as well as in other countries, including the U.S.

During their Beijing trip, Hunter also introduced Jonathan Li to his dad. Li is Hunter's business partner – he's CEO and Director of BHR.

Hunter arranged for Joe to meet Li in the lobby of the hotel where they stayed during their Beijing trip.

2014

In 2014, one of BHR's first major investments was in the China General Nuclear Power Corporation.

CGN is a Chinese government-owned nuclear power company that sold off a stake of the company to outside investors. Problem is, CGN was under FBI investigation for paying informants in the U.S. to steal nuclear secrets.

In 2016, the FBI arrested the ringleader of this nuclear espionage, a man named Allen Ho.

When they arrested Ho, he was using a random code generator to access funds being provided to him from – where else? – the Bank of China.

Yet while this FBI probe was going on, the son of the Vice President owned a stake in the company being investigated. And even after arrests were made, Rosemont Seneca did not alter its relationship with BHR, nor did it divest from CGN, even though it was stealing U.S. nuclear secrets.

2015

In 2015, BHR partnered with the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) to buy an American company called Henniges for $600 million.

AVIC is a gigantic military contractor in China – think Lockheed Martin – that makes fighter jets, bombers and drones. BHR bought 49% of Henniges and AVIC bought 51%.

Henniges is a precision parts manufacturer specializing in anti-vibration technology. The stuff they make is known as "dual use" by the U.S. State Department, which means the technology can also have a military application.

Because of that, the deal had to be approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS) since it could have national security implications. The thing is, the American side of BHR – meaning Hunter Biden and his pals – had to know there were serious national security implications with AVIC.

The year before they formed a partnership with AVIC, the Wall Street Journal reported how AVIC stole technology related to the U.S. Air Force's F-35 stealth fighter and used it in its own stealth fighter for the Chinese.

How the Committee on Foreign Investment approved that deal remains a mystery. CFIUS does not publicly disclose any information regarding its decisions. Their findings are not publicly announced.

Interesting that China accounted for the largest share – with 74 transactions – approved by CFIUS during Obama's second term (2013-2015).

Under the umbrella of Rosemont Capital was a real estate company called Rosemont Realty. In 2015, a Chinese company called Gemini Investments bought a 75% stake in Rosemont Realty. The company was renamed Gemini Rosemont

Gemini brought $3 billion to the partnership with Rosemont, with the aim of buying "Class A institutional-quality commercial office properties in U.S. markets."

Red flag (literally) – Gemini Investments is a subsidiary of the China Ocean Shipping Company, a.k.a., "COSCO."

COSCO is a Chinese government-owned company. Its headquarters in Beijing is actually next to the headquarters of the Bank of China. COSCO is well-known for its close military ties. It's essentially a branch of the Chinese Navy.

2017

In 2017, BHR invested in Face++. That's the facial recognition phone app built by a Chinese company that is incorporated in a separate app built by the Chinese government. Police in the Xinjiang [Sin-jong] region of China use that app to keep tabs on citizens, and track and detain Uiguhr [Wee-ger] Muslims.

The app allows police easy access to data about Chinese Muslims including things like religious activity, blood type, and even the amount of electricity they use.

2018

In March 2018, a spokesman (Chris Bastardi) for Christopher Heinz (John Kerry's stepson) emailed The Hill to say that Heinz had "no operating role" in Rosemont Seneca, and that he was not involved in any of Rosemont's deals in China (which contradicts Schweizer's report in his book Secret Empires).

Chris Heinz was involved in Rosemont Capital. Rosemont Seneca was established under the same GP as Rosemont Capital, but Chris Heinz had no operating role in it. Chris and his family have no financial interest or investment in Bohai Harvest RST, he has never traveled to China, and he has never met with the firm's Chinese management team or investors.

2019

In October 2019, Hunter Biden's lawyer, George Mesires, said Hunter did not conduct any business on that 2013 trip to Beijing with his Dad.

Mesires said the timing of BHR's business license getting approved was purely coincidental because the paperwork had been submitted months before the Bidens' China trip.

According to Hunter's lawyer, the approval " was not related in any way, shape or form to Hunter's visit."

Hunter Biden finally stepped down from the BHR board last October (2019), but he DID NOT give up his 10% stake in the company.

When Bevan Cooney — the former "junior" business partner to Hunter Biden and Devon Archer — went to jail in 2019, investigative reporter and New York Times bestselling author Peter Schweizer thought he'd never gain access to the damning emails Cooney had promised. That all changed three weeks ago when Schweizer was given complete access to Cooney's gmail account.

Schweizer joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to describe just some of the business deals revealed within these emails — like Hunter working with an alleged Russian criminal and with Chinese communists to secure their assets, or to secure one-on-one time with his dad, then-Vice President Joe Biden. And all of this new information is completely separate from the emails allegedly discovered on Hunter Biden's laptop recently reported by the New York Post.

"So, I want to make this clear. This [Cooney's emails] has nothing to do with what's on the laptop … It didn't come from [Rudy] Giuliani. It didn't come from anybody else, right?" Glenn asked Schweizer.

"That's absolutely correct," Schweizer confirmed.

He briefly explained how Cooney, a former Los Angeles nightclub owner, is currently serving a prison sentence for his involvement in a fraudulent business bond scheme with Biden and Archer. From prison, Cooney gave Schweizer written permission to access his Gmail account.

"This is really important," he noted. "We're not looking at printouts. Not looking at PDFs. We're actually in his Gmail accounts themselves, sifting through these emails. And there's a shocking amount of information about deals involving China, involving Russia, involving all sorts of things they were trying to pull off."

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The king of "No Spin" and bestselling author of "Killing Crazy Horse," Bill O'Reilly joined Glenn Beck on this week's podcast to talk about the latest developments in Joe Biden's Ukraine and China corruption scandal. Now that some of the details are finally coming out in the open, does the average Democrat care? Maybe, but the Left doesn't seem to.

O'Reilly argued there's more hatred for President Donald Trump now than in 2016, and that some people hate President Trump so much that they'd rather vote for the "senile, corrupt" Joe Biden.

"Hunter got tens of millions of dollars from Ukraine, from Russia, from China because his father was vice president. I have no doubt in my mind," O'Reilly said. "But the hatred for Donald Trump overrides that in the minds of millions of viewers. They're saying, 'You know, we'd rather have the senile corrupt guy than Trump.'"

Asked by Glenn if any other Republican running for president would be met with the same level of vitriol, O'Reilly answered, "The Left is the Left. They don't like America. The want to redo the Constitution. They want to take some of our freedoms, like the Second Amendment and the First Amendment, and change them. And they want to destroy capitalism and replace it with a big centralized government in Washington that controls the economy … but I'm talking about the folks. I have liberal friends and I say to them, 'Do you not understand that when you vote for Biden, you're voting against your own self interest?'"

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