March 2nd, 2012
06:07 PM ET
3 years ago

Initially silent, Romney addresses Limbaugh ‘slut’ remarks

Cleveland, Ohio (CNN) - Mitt Romney steered clear of the Rush Limbaugh controversy until Friday evening, even avoiding a CNN reporter earlier in the day, when he addressed the issue after an event in Cleveland.

“I'll just say this which is it’s not the language I would have used," Romney said. "I’m focusing on the issues I think are significant in the country today and that’s why I’m here talking about jobs and Ohio.”

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

After an event in Bellevue, Washington, CNN asked Romney for a comment on Limbaugh who called Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke a "slut" after she testified before Congress on the importance of insurance coverage of contraception.

The former Massachusetts governor was within a few feet of CNN's camera when he was asked the question. But Romney walked by without comment.

Limbaugh ignited a political firestorm Wednesday when he suggested Fluke's support of contraception coverage was an attempt to force Americans to pay for her sexual activities.

"It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex," Limbaugh said.

Romney's main rival for the GOP nomination, Rick Santorum called Limbaugh's comments "absurd" in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

- CNN Political Producer Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report.

Also see:

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Gingrich robo call labels Santorum 'union bosses' pal'

Michigan results provoke accusations, ire


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (248 Responses)
  1. shel3364

    So Romney wouldn't have used these words?

    Kinda implies he has the same sentiment but would have found a more high-falutin' way to say it.

    March 2, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  2. maf

    "I'll just say this which is it’s not the language I would have used," ?????
    It's truly how he thinks!!! What a COWARD!!
    Stand up Mitt, speak out against misogyny!! Your silence would have been better than uttering this sheepish comment!

    Now you need to go and chase down Newt and Ron, who's silence is now deafening. If you haven't polarized yourself by now, you sure have iced the cake on this one.
    Go ahead GOP, allow any one of these cowards, Mitt, Rick, Newt or Ron to represent you and your party. Pathetic.
    If you are a woman and still deem yourself a Republican, then shame on you. You will take your own cause backwards.

    March 2, 2012 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  3. Dr. K.

    It looks to me like Mr. Romney has all the backbone of a piece of tissue paper. He can't even stand up against Rush Limbaugh for such hateful rhetoric and still expects to be the leader of the free world? Afraid of a radio host, lest he turn away even more haters, I suppose.

    March 2, 2012 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  4. travis

    Romney is smart enough to know that nothing good can come from commenting on the Limbuagh situation.

    Limbaugh will be radioactive for a while due to his outragous comments. I think he is a jerk regardless.

    It is really a shame that Romney and all the candidates have to be careful not to offend "Joba the Hut" Limbough. It is about thime that someone in the party stood up to him. He has no credibility with people that have the ability to think on their own.

    GO ROMNEY 2012

    March 2, 2012 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  5. paulbark

    Romney didn't know how to address the issue until he consulted with advisers. Given his past communication errors and flip flops, that's understandable. Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool, than to open it and leave no doubt.

    March 2, 2012 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  6. Mark W

    Romney and the rest of the Gutless Ole Party won't say crap about Pope Rushbo I.

    March 2, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  7. fullclarity

    That's right, Mitt, don't comment about the human respect for this young woman. After all, it's only about jobs and Ohio, nothing else. Sheesh!

    March 2, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  8. Debbie

    Good hand off Romney! No stand!

    March 2, 2012 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  9. SuZieCoyote

    Well, of course he's not going to say anything. Why would he do anything other than throw her under the bus? He can't afford to lose one single vote. She's only a woman, after all. No big loss.

    March 2, 2012 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  10. joemeservy

    How is this story getting more coverage then the details of Romney's Jobs Plan?? CNN needs to start focusing on stories that matter to me and to all of America rather than one man's uncouth and irresponsible behavior on another radio station. I don't support Limbaugh and I don't support Government getting involved so much in contraceptives. I also don't like having a President who calls people he feels were hurt by someone else because of him–his heart may be in a right place but his head isn't...please do something for ALL of America and repeal Obamacare and BALANCE THE BUDGET.

    March 2, 2012 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  11. asm_ith

    That's the best Romney can say? What a coward!!! Anyone with any moral values would condemn Limbaugh.

    March 2, 2012 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  12. AngryBob

    Once again, Romney demonstrates that he's a completely out of touch ignorant fool. He's also a coward. He's afraid of Rush Limbaugh and his lunatic following. Limbaugh lets loose with the most vile attacks on a woman for having the gall to express her opinion on a serious subject. Clearly it was an effort to silence her and anyone else who would have the nerve to express a similar opinion. This is the Republican way nowadays. Vilify and demean anyone with whom you disagree. By his cowardly silence, Romney is an enabler of this disease called Limbaugh. But then, what else could one expect from a chicken-hawk like Romney? As a young man he showed his cowardice by evading the draft while cheer leading for the Vietnam war. He hasn't change a bit. He's learned nothing.

    March 2, 2012 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  13. hwy1624

    I do not support covering contraception for Ms Fluke or others like her, male or female. People who want to be promiscuous or need birth control should not except others, like me, to give their hard earned money to cover their behavior.

    March 2, 2012 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  14. gwats

    Romney, are your lips moving? Again?

    March 2, 2012 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  15. westward

    I take Romney's silence as another major slight against women.

    GOP = the anti-women party.

    March 2, 2012 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  16. GI Joe.

    Romney's campaign speaker: Andrea Saul
    Her bio on Facebook -- notice the narcissism (i.e., "I'm awesome").

    Basic Information.

    About Andrea

    i'm awesome!

    Relationship Status

    In a relationship with Sarah Ruth Davis

    -------------
    Guess Ann's not worried about hubby with his campaign spokesperson.

    March 2, 2012 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  17. hmmm...

    Oh Please. Anyone with half a brain understands this is the best thing that could happen for the Democrats. How about a story about how stupid things whacky people say are used to control the rest of us into living under a government such as the one we now have. It is exactly this sort of thing that is used to support Washington as it is and has been. How about the REAL news worth some brain matter.

    March 2, 2012 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  18. Simeon Namore

    I find this remarkable. What this penetrating report fails to mention is that Mittnes pays Limbaugh's salary and has since 2008 when Bain Capital (Mittens's thugs) bought Clear Channel Communications–Clear Channel broadcasts Limbaugh. So, iif Mittens doesn't like what Limbaugh says, he can fire him. Think he'll do that? Hahahahaha.

    March 2, 2012 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  19. Howard

    Rush's comments pale in comparison to those vile public insults, which ran non-stop, towards Palin's daughter ... maybe it's time to return the favor to Obama's daughters !!!

    March 2, 2012 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  20. American

    Is that all? Romney unfortunately appears too scared to take a stand.
    Very weak & sad.

    March 2, 2012 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  21. kravitz

    Bain Capital owns Premiere Radio Networks, which owns Rush Limbaugh's show. So Mitt can't really diss one of his own properties, can he?

    March 2, 2012 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  22. babooph

    I can't figure Rush to be a good judge -he would end up celibate at the chicken ranch with his fat fist full of c notes...

    March 2, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  23. Kevin

    Not the language he would have used? Good to know that you agree with the sentiment, pig.

    March 2, 2012 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  24. Sherry

    First, I am utterly astonished to see that no one has yet to enter a post regarding this subject. I guess all things can't be as entertaining as the Kardashians' endless saga. My comment is to simply say I am still in shock that after all this time and all the horrendous comments that Mr. Limbaugh has made, someone hasn't put a muzzle on him. And...by the way...Mr. Limbaugh isn't really about any political party (just in case you're wondering). Rush Limbaugh is quite simply, about Rush Limbaugh. Always has been and always will be. His comments have just gotten more vulgar over the years. This young woman clearly has an open and shut case for slander. But she already knows that since she's in law school. I applaude her concern over women's rights regarding health care. There are many reasons why women use birth control. But he is so narrow-minded, that he would never consider such a thought. His head seems to be filled with filth instead. I would say "Shame on you Mr. Limbaugh!" But that's giving him a compliment and I am not going there!

    March 2, 2012 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  25. That's cool.

    I would hate a candidate the responded quickly to political correctness.

    March 2, 2012 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
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