October 16th, 2007
01:29 PM ET
2 months ago

Reid's letter condemning Limbaugh fetches $50K on eBay

Reid's letter is a hot item on eBay.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - It may turn out to be the most valuable letter Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ever sent.

The Nevada Democrat's correspondence-in-question was sent earlier this month to Clear Channel CEO Mark Mays, officially calling on him to condemn popular conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh's controversial 'phony soldiers' remark. Clear Channel syndicates Limbaugh's show.

Mays refused to condemn the remarks and Limbaugh recently placed Reid's letter on eBay, pledging to match whatever it fetched and donate it all to The Marine Corps – Law Enforcement Foundation.

As of Tuesday morning, the top bid for the letter was over $50,000. The bidding ends Friday.

"I'm going to match the dollar figure, and I have suggested that Sen. Reid and the 40 other Democrats who signed the smear letter … also match the donation," Limbaugh said on his show Monday.

Limbaugh's original remark came on a September 26 program as he and a caller were discussing critics of the Iraq war.

"What's really funny is, they [Iraq war critics] never talk to real soldiers," the caller said. "They like to pull these soldiers that come up out of the blue and talk to the media."

Limbaugh responded, "The phony soldiers."

After the liberal media watchdog group MediaMatters.org and several Democrats quickly condemned the remark, Limbaugh said he was "taken out of context," and added he was referring to one soldier specifically - Jesse MacBeth, a war critic who falsely claimed to be an Iraq veteran.

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Filed under: Harry Reid • Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (164 Responses)
  1. Mrs. Hall

    Aren't there some legal issues here? Being that Limbaugh's radio show is a public media? I certainly hope no one would ever sell one of my comments on ebay.

    October 16, 2007 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  2. Richard S Bulverde Tx

    "It appears we have appointed our worst generals to command forces, and our most gifted and brilliant to edit newspapers. In fact, I discovered by reading newspapers that these editor/geniuses plainly saw all my strategic defects from the start, yet failed to inform me until it was too late.

    Accordingly, I am readily willing to yield my command to these obviously superior intellects, and I will, in turn, do my best for the Cause by writing editorials – after the fact."

    October 16, 2007 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  3. john williams san diego, ca.

    RUSH...wrong charity...please donate the money to the Harry Reid Bozo the Clown org.

    October 16, 2007 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  4. pam Eugene, OR

    I would be willing to bet 50K there is an off button on your radio. If you don't like him turn the off button. No one forces you to listen to him. I can't stand the man so I don't listen to him. But, I do defend his right to say the stupid stuff he says.
    Obama 08

    October 16, 2007 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  5. Mark. Portland, OR

    Touched a nerve here, liberals? This is the best. Way to go Rush! This is so much fun.

    October 17, 2007 01:21 am at 1:21 am |
  6. JoEllen Hamilton Barnhart, MO

    Well Doug – I don't think that you are right in your comments. I overheard Giuliani talking about sending a plane with Edwards, Clinton and Obama towards the mid-east last night – that sounds pretty hateful.

    I guess the Repubs don't make with the nasty talk – they prefer to just quietly invade a small country that was minding it's own business and level it. 54% of Iraqis who have died because of Bush's disaster have been women and children. He is a war criminal personally responsible for the deaths of thousands of our OWN young men and woman.

    Rush Limbaugh is of zero importance compared to this – ZERO. Have you even listened to his program? He says some enormously rotten things about lefties every day – oh, and how about Ann Coulter? Did you hear what she said about Jews recently? Are you even LISTENING before you open your mouth?

    October 17, 2007 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  7. D. White, Greensburg, PA

    Limbaugh was speaking about a man that was never in combat and didn't even make it though boot camp who spoke about events that he could not possibly have been a part of.

    In addition to this person he in general considers people who have lied about being in the service to either get benfits that rightfully belong to our brave soldiers or to make false claims about military occurances "phony soldiers". What is wrong with that?

    October 17, 2007 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  8. Carol Mandelstam Miami, FL

    $105,000.00 (so far) to honor and further the education of the children of those great Americans who have given their lives for our freedom–Thank you Rush.

    October 17, 2007 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  9. William Patton, Cave Creek, AZ

    When will CNN get it right? I heard the original comments made by El Rushbo on this Phony Soldiers issue; He clearly was addressing the fact that a soldier who could not even complete basic training made false statements. These statements made included atrocities he stated were committed by our soldiers in theater.

    As a former soldier (who not only completed basic training but my three year tour of duty) I found the coverage of this story By CNN and other media outlets to require “a willing suspension of disbelief”.

    Rush Limbaugh was clearly then targeted by members of the Senate for comments that were clearly taken out of contexts and the enflamed by Media Matters and others.

    Here is CNN’s chance to “Get it Right” and show they support our troops. Call on every member of the Senate who signed the letter to the president of Clear Channel to match Rush Limbaugh’s pledge to donate a matching amount from the auction of this historic letter.

    October 17, 2007 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  10. Ben Goldendale ,WA

    i love Rush. He beats the Libs every time. It's kind of funny that Harry Reid and the huge failure Pelosi have approval ratings 3 times lower than BUSH.

    October 18, 2007 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  11. Doug, Raleigh NC

    You libs who have never listen to a firsthand word Rush has said, ever, have very passionate views about the man none the less. Let me guess, "I don't have to hear that blowhard to know he's an idiot". Always fun to see you intellectual elites being led by the nose, running on pure emotion.

    October 18, 2007 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  12. John A Fischer Dayton Ohio

    This article seems like it is missing a lot of content. I Would Like To Hear the Full Story. Please do a follow up story or email me at jcbasic@sbcglobal.net

    October 18, 2007 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  13. Janel, Hinckley, OH

    The news here is that the Senators took time away from the nation's business to attempt to interfere with the First Amendment. Our tax dollars being wasted as usual. Good for Rush for raising money and matching. BTW the high bid is over $850,000!!!

    October 18, 2007 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  14. shane Los Angeles

    Wow..The letter is now up to $851,000. If the Senators would agree to match that donation it would really help Military families. Who cares what people think of Limbaugh it is a good cause and will help those the Democrats claim to now love. I can't imagine anyone hating Limbaugh so much they would not support our Military??

    October 18, 2007 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  15. Dave, Chicago, IL

    $50,000?

    $100,000?

    Heh..The bidding on Harry Reid's Smear Letter has now topped $1,200,100.00....

    All proceeds to The Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundation

    And its still got a like 13 hours to go.

    Limbaugh is going to match the winning bidder's funds. That means the Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundation will be collecting on a donation of at least $2,400,200.00!!!

    Go Rush Go!!

    October 19, 2007 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  16. Woody Austin, Watford City ND

    The bid is now over $2,000,000. A caller asked Rush what he would do if someone bought this document for $20,000,000. Rush said thats just a book and a couple of speeches. The money for this organization is great, but statement behind this auction has political power.

    October 19, 2007 02:51 am at 2:51 am |
  17. Paul, Tempe, AZ

    Bidding up to $2,000,200. TWO MILLION DOLLARS Winning bid to be matched by Rush personally. A money going to a worthy charity. Yet the MSM by an large is ignoring it. Why is that?

    October 19, 2007 02:55 am at 2:55 am |
  18. Wayne, Greenville TX

    There was no smear. Limbaugh did not mention that one soldier – Jesse MacBeth – until a minute and a half after he called those who disagree with him "phony soldiers". Later on, Limbaugh expanded his "phony soldiers" to included decorated Marine veteran and Democratic Congressman John Murtha. Limbaugh has edited the transcript of his show as it appears on his web site to remove that minute-and-a-half span between his mentioning "phony soldiers" and Jesse MacBeth. He then claims that the transcript on his web site is an exact record of what transpired.

    As usual, Limbaugh has lied, and people in the media too lazy to do any digging have taken his word for what he said.

    If you want to read the REAL transcript of what Limbaugh ACTUALLY said, fo to the Media Matters for America web site (www.mediamatters.org).

    October 19, 2007 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  19. Bill, Newport Beach CA

    Everything Rush says about the drive by media is true. The auciton is now over $2,000,000 and NO MENTION on CNN !

    Come on Senators, Rush is going to match this, you should also ! Where is Hillary ? She signed this letter, but she sure is afraid !

    October 19, 2007 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  20. Bob Cincinnati, Ohio

    Good job Rush! It's about time some one cares about the troops, lord knows the demorats would rather give help to the terrorist. That includes CNN, MSMBC, cBS, and the rest of the liberal hate the military media.
    Oh yeah some one brought up checking the source with media matters. Now there is a good source of lies and deception that control the demorat party. Hey go ahead and let george "the communist" soros to run your life.

    October 19, 2007 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  21. Herb, Morris, IL

    1. Rush putting up the letter for auction, made Reid and his cronies look like fools.
    2. Reid claiming credit for the $2,000,000 donation today confirmed that the Nev. senator is a fool.

    Sen Reid – a little advice – An old Navy chief told me in the early 60's that it was better to keep your mouth shut and have some people think that you're a fool, than opening your mouth and removing all doubt.

    October 19, 2007 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  22. Linda, Warren, MI

    You demonstrate your ignorance and blind predjudice when you do not search out the facts. I was listening to the original "phony soldier" comment re: a man who POSED as a soldier with FALSE documentation to LIE about our troops. Take 30 seconds and "Google" the name Jesse Macbeth for the facts. Grow up and be the open-minded people you claim to be.

    Reid distorted the truth for his own adgenda. LYING on the Senate floor: what do you think he's up to??? Do you question his motives? Why is he sanctified?

    October 19, 2007 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  23. Wayne, Greenville TX

    Everything Rush says about the drive by media is true. The auciton is now over $2,000,000 and NO MENTION on CNN !

    Come on Senators, Rush is going to match this, you should also ! Where is Hillary ? She signed this letter, but she sure is afraid !

    Posted By Bill, Newport Beach CA : October 19, 2007 9:26 am

    They're probably not mentioning it, Bill, because Rush is basing all of this on a lie. He edited out over a minute of the audio of his show (and edited the transcript on his web site to match), and then claimed that it was a factual record of what he said.

    The only smearing going on is being done by Rush Limbaugh. First he smeared eveery soldier who disagrees with him, then he changed it to say that he only smeared Jesse MacBeth, then he revised it to include decorated Marine veteran John Murtha. The Media matters web site has the original text of Rush's smear, if you care to go there (www.mediamatters.org) and learn the truth about one of the biggest liars in America – Rush Limbaugh.

    October 19, 2007 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  24. Wayne, Greenville TX

    You demonstrate your ignorance and blind predjudice when you do not search out the facts. I was listening to the original "phony soldier" comment re: a man who POSED as a soldier with FALSE documentation to LIE about our troops. Take 30 seconds and "Google" the name Jesse Macbeth for the facts. Grow up and be the open-minded people you claim to be.

    Reid distorted the truth for his own adgenda. LYING on the Senate floor: what do you think he's up to??? Do you question his motives? Why is he sanctified?

    Posted By Linda, Warren, MI : October 19, 2007 2:12 pm
    Actually, Linda, you've demonstrated YOUR ignorance by siding with Rush Limbaugh on this one. If you go to his web site to read what he said (or view the You Tube video he posted), you only see an EDITED version. Rush doctored the tape to change what he said – if he was only talking about one soldier, then why did he use the phrase "phony SOLDIERS" (plural).

    If you want to learn the truth, Linda, go to the Media matters web site (www.mediamatters.org) and read the complete unedited transcript.

    October 19, 2007 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  25. Way, Greenville, TX

    Good job Rush! It's about time some one cares about the troops, lord knows the demorats would rather give help to the terrorist. That includes CNN, MSMBC, cBS, and the rest of the liberal hate the military media.
    Oh yeah some one brought up checking the source with media matters. Now there is a good source of lies and deception that control the demorat party. Hey go ahead and let george "the communist" soros to run your life.

    Posted By Bob Cincinnati, Ohio : October 19, 2007 1:36 pm

    I'm the one who mentioned Media Matters, Bob. They have the actual transcript of what Rush said – not the edited one Rush claims is what he said.

    And I bel;ieve that george Soros is a better human being than Limbaugh, Hannity, Savage, O'Reilly, Levin, and all the other right-wing wackos put together could ever HOPE to be. It's too bad that so many pinheads like you have OD'd on their Kool-Aid.

    October 19, 2007 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
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