October 3rd, 2007
12:22 PM ET
9 years ago

Limbaugh's boss weighs in on 'phony soldiers'

Limbaugh set off a firestorm last week with his "phony soldiers" comment.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The company that syndicates Rush Limbaugh's popular radio program defended the conservative talk-show host Wednesday over his controversial "phony soldiers" remark, telling the Senate's top Democrat it is "unfair" to assume his comments were directed at combat soldiers who disagree with the Iraq war.

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Mark Mays, the CEO of Clear Channel Communications, wrote, "Over the years Mr. Limbaugh has repeatedly praised the dedication and valor of our brave men and women in uniform.

"Given Mr. Limbaugh's history of support for our soldiers, it would be unfair for me to assume his statements were intended to personally indict combat soldiers simply because they didn't share his own beliefs regarding the war in Iraq," he added.

Mays' letter was a response to a letter sent by Reid Tuesday, and signed by 41 Senate Democrats, calling on Clear Channel to publicly repudiate the comments. Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, the leading candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination, were among the senators that signed the letter.

Limbaugh's comments in question came last Wednesday when Limbaugh 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."

"The phony soldiers," Limbaugh then said.

Full story 

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Harry Reid • Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (230 Responses)
  1. Jennifer, CA

    You people are all hilarious to me. You sit here and condemn Rush for being "saturated in and rotted by hate" and yet just look at the things you all are saying...calling him "vicoden boy" and a "fat bloviating pig". WAKE UP PEOPLE! Here you are, indulging in the same thing you're accusing this man of. Shame on YOU. And before you make public written statements for the world to read, perhaps you morons should check your spelling and grammar. And that's not coming from a place of hatred, but rather from a place of complete, total irritation from an American citizen that finds it hard to believe folks would actually call someone "uneducated", but can't figure out when to pluralize a word. Get real folks...you're as bad as the politicians that started this nonsense in the first place. Give me a break!

    October 16, 2007 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  2. Jack - CA

    Limbaugh is a polarizing figure, yet he doesn't scare me or trouble me. The fact that there are (large amounts) people who listen to him does.

    October 16, 2007 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. Jeannine, Texarkana, Texas

    Reid is now trying to take credit and acts like this was a good thing. I'd like to see Reid and the other 40 senators follow Rush's lead. He's matched the $2Million with his own funds. Belly up to the bar, Reid and friends. You can't look any more foolish. This was a quote by Rush from another news show. Get your facts straight.

    October 19, 2007 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  4. Ian, Chino, CA

    Regardless of whether or not you agree with Rush, and regardless of whether or not you agree with the context in which the statements were made, the fact that our Government leaders in the House took the time to actually make and then co-sign a letter, on the clock is in gross misconduct and misuse of power considering the target of the attack. A PRIVATE CITIZEN!! The fact that within the same 2 weeks prior to the comments, a big topic with Rush was the “Phony Soldier” (not having been coined yet) who did not even make it through basic training, saw no action whatsoever, was paraded in the mainstream media as a hero with authority condemning the war. Noted as a Veteran, this “phony soldier” was proven to have been just that, a phony and no soldier. Rush was talking about this person and people like him. Furthermore and finally, I would challenge anyone to take a look at all previous comments Rush has ever made about the Military and its members. Rush is one of the most outspoken and active supporters of our armed forces. While your at it, also take a look at all the contributions Rush makes to military foundations and charities. His record should speak for itself.

    October 20, 2007 02:37 am at 2:37 am |
  5. Bob G melbourne florida

    As a retired military officer, and combat veteran, life member of the vfw and dav, I am now a "phony soldier" according to Rush Limbaugh, simply because I'm against the Iraqi war..? I listen to Limbaugh on a regular basis, and take him with a grain of salt. Unlike most conservative talk show hosts, who solicit and listen to differing points of view, Limbaugh doesn't, and uses call screening and hang ups as his way of getting HIS message across. I was listening to his show the day that he said the "phony soldier" comment, and there is zero doubt in my mind what his meaning and intent were, and that was to call any soldier who is against the war, like myself, a phony soldier, plain and simple. Now, is his ridiculous comment worthy of 41 congressman signing a letter - I think not. Reid is just as big an idiot as Limbaugh, and stupid in giving Limbaugh such undo publicity. Do you know that it costs you $$$ to email Limbaugh..? WTF

    October 24, 2007 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
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