(CNN) - Sen. Carl Levin, the powerful chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said Wednesday he would like the Armed Forces Network to drop the controversial Rush Limbaugh program from its service that provides radio and television shows to U.S. service members around the world.
"I would hope the people that run it see just how offensive this is and drop it on their own volition," Levin told CNN in an exclusive interview in the Capitol.
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Levin's comments come in the wake of a widening uproar over Limbaugh's characterization of a young female law student as a "slut" and a "prostitute" for advocating insurance coverage of contraceptives.
The Pentagon said Monday the Defense Department currently has no plans to stop broadcasting the show. DOD's policy is to broadcast shows that "reflect a wide range" of opinion, said Pentagon press secretary George Little.
Levin, a generally liberal Democrat from Michigan whose top spot on Armed Services makes him very influential inside the Pentagon, said he would "love" to see the program dropped, but he doesn't think it should be up to Congress to pass a law to make it happen.
"I think that is probably an issue that should be left to the folks that run that network," he said. "In other words, I'd love to see them drop it but I don't think I'd legislate it."
The liberal leaning advocacy group Vote Vets and other progressive voices in the blogosphere have called for the AFN to drop Limbaugh's program.
Levin said he was "delighted" so many advertisers had pulled their commercials from the program.
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Typical approach for the liberals/democrats, if you don't like what someone says, cut them off from the public. Although I don't agree with a lot of what Rush says and his style, he hits the point in other areas, and we do have something called Freedom of Speech. What the liberals want is only liberal thinking put out to the people so they can try to brain wash more sheepie to follow them as they take the country down the drain of socialism.
Hopefully we are seeing the end of both Limbaugh and Murdoch. Both should go the way of Glen Beck.
Rush made a mistake on this one, but Levin is just another hypocritical liberal. I didn't hear him condemning anybody for their low-class comments on Sarah Palin. And now he's worried about what Rush says or doesn't say?? He should be doing his job and not poking his nose in the business of private U.S. citizens.
LOL! What a complete buffoon. The Pentagon has already told the moon bat liberals that Rush's show is not going to be cancelled. And all this hoopla generated by the quacks at Media Matters about sponsors leaving Rush's show? Hah! Rush has over 1800 sponsors on 600 radio stations and affiliates that reach a market of 20 million people daily. What the liberal hacks aren't telling you is Limbaugh actually turns down 100's of sponsors every year because there is such a backlog trying to get on his show to reach his massive audience. He has already replaced most of the cowardly sponsors who caved in to the liberals. Take Carbonite for instance. Have you seen what has happened to the value of their stock since they left Limbaugh? LOL! Their investors are fleeing and their stock value has plummeted 22% in just 4 days to a 376 day low. Wanna bet they come crawling back?
Who decides what "diverse opinions" the military hears, anyhow? What sort of sponsorship deals determine this garbage?
Hey, anybody of the right mindset could take over for Lush. All you need is the ability to lie, the ability to pound your fist on the table near the microphone, the ability to show up at work drunk or high on illegal drugs, and be able to scream when angered. Oh yeah, you need to have no conscious when you do any of the above neanderthal actions or when you incorrectly bash human beings, even though your not one of that species.
You left out one pertinent fact. How many liberal shows does Armed Forces Radio carry compared to the number of conservative ones? Does the liberal congressman beileve in equal representation for all sides of issues or just his own on government funded radio?
Levin should be dropped period! This loser has done nothing for the State of Michigan. I live here.
levin is approaching this from the wrong angle. What he should say so that this does actually happen is that he wants all offensive and divisive shows off of our military networks because those fighting for our freedom should not be subjected to divisive rhetoric. Because he is a democrat hating on limbaugh, it just appears to be a partisan attack.
I am very stunned since Rush has no problem bashing President Obama when he sees fit. I would think that would be undermining the military personnel, when they are taught to put the leader in chief in first position and to honor his requests on behalf of the American People. To hear Rush and his rants I would think that could cause strife.
Rush should have prefaced his remarks by saying he's Muslim. Then no one would have said anything.
Of course a lefty wants to silence any other points of view. They invented Political Correctness whch is just another name for censorship. Nothing new here
It's difficult to see how broadcasting gender hate is of any value to a mixed gender combat military. Opinions can be expressed without hate. So have varied opinion programs instead.
DOD's policy is to broadcast shows that "reflect a wide range" of opinion,'. Really? The only thing 'wide' about Limbaugh is his girth. His narrow-minded right-wing ideology is actually hatred disguised as anti-Democrat rhetoric.
rush has been vile talk from his start, what what kind of corporations would sponsor him period, Americans buy into manure hands down, rush is down there with whale manure, the so-called evangelicals, are intolerant evils, once called the moral majority, GOD, and history be the judge
"Wide range of opinion?" C'mon, the range most generally is from the right of center to the far right. No balanced reporting from AFN....I think Faux News is their premier news source.
I looked up the word that Bill Maher called Sara Palin and it was not a slut. A twat is an idiot or dumb person according to the dictionary I looked up the word. SNL used the same word and they also meant it as a dumb person.
If Rush leaves us how will the rest of us gauge the stupidity of the republicans?
Rush Limbaugh losing thirty sponsors is a drop in the bucket. A number of those sponsors are in local markets and not nationwide. Limbaugh has 600 radio stations and 15 million listeners. He is not going anywhere anytime soon.
It's not one thing, RL spreads hate and fear. He's done so for what, 15 years? So now he's crossed the line, for most people. His base in not conservative, it's reactionary and jingoistic It inspires violence, hate, racisism, sexism and just about any other type of discrimination he can think of. I hope we as a people now see the emptiness of his "values" which clearly are only hot air. If this Christian Compassionate Conservative is the spokesperson, what real values can he give us? End hate. All hate. Take it off our airwaves. Listen to his show, then call all the sponsors that day, and tell them you are boycotting their products as long as they continue to air the program. Now all you haters out there, respond and prove my point.
As much as I despise what Limbaugh said, this is really piling on. Why deprive our forces overseas from listening to a commentator they may enjoy?
Leven is one of Washington's biggest crooks, ignore him.
Good for you Sen. Carl Levin,
Rush limbaugh has no business being broadcast on AFN. Rush is a racist,bigoted hatemonger who thinly disguises his rantings as political commentary.
"DOD's policy is to broadcast shows that "reflect a wide range" of opinion, said Pentagon press secretary George Little."
Then where are the KKK programs, or the neonazi programs or the antigay programs? Those groups preach hate just like Rush does so shouldn`t they be allowed to voice their wide range of opinions on AFN too? of course they shouldn`t and neither should Rush.
The important point to remember here is that Rush isn`t a political commentator he`s a racist, bigoted hater that gets away with polluting the public airwaves under the guise of political commentary.
Of course it should be dropped. Email the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and tell him so.