March 5th, 2009
03:16 PM ET
13 years ago

Limbaugh: A deliberate distraction or de facto leader?

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Radio host Rush Limbaugh has been vocal about his displeasure with President Obama's policies."]
(CNN) - As Democrats cast conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh as the de facto leader of the GOP, Republicans are decrying what they see as an orchestrated scheme designed to divert attention from the Democrats' spending proposals.

Democrats fired out two political e-mails about Limbaugh on Thursday morning, calling him the face of the GOP, and Republicans sent out one of their own, demanding that the White House "come clean" about and apologize for a "political attack game."

An e-mail sent on behalf of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee states: "Rush Limbaugh is the leading voice of the Republican Party. Make no mistake. When Rush says jump, congressional Republicans say how high?"

The committee says that while President Obama has reached out a hand to Republicans, the GOP has "preferred to kowtow to extremists like Limbaugh rather than accept the good faith outreach of our president."

The letter asks readers to sign the committee's petition - which will be sent to Senate Republicans - "demanding that they reject the disgraceful words of Rush Limbaugh and start working with President Obama on real solutions for the American people."

Also on Thursday, the Democratic National Committee announced in an e-mail its plans to buy billboard space in West Palm Beach, Florida, criticizing Limbaugh for opposing Obama's policies.

The DNC sent an e-mail to supporters Thursday soliciting a "slogan in ten words or less" that will appear on the billboard in Limbaugh's hometown. "If Republican leaders aren't willing to tell Rush, then we will," DNC Executive Director Jen O'Malley Dillon wrote in the e-mail.

On the Republican side, Sen. John Cornyn of Texas sent an e-mail to supporters of the National Republican Senatorial Committee asking them to sign a petition demanding that the White House apologize for not focusing on "the hard work that needs to be done to get America's economy back on track."

Full story

Filed under: Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (130 Responses)
  1. ray ray

    I am ASHAMED of this administration!!

    Once we stood for free-speech, regardless if the message was supportive or critical of our Government. NOW – private citizens are being targeted and attacked by this administration.

    WHO thinks it's OK for the President's team BUYING a billboard to attack a private citizen???

    March 5, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  2. Public is on Obama Kool Aid

    He makes much more sense than Obama. Lowest Stock market in 12 years from Obama and he doesn't care. Putting Limbaugh's ego aside, he is much more educated on how to get the US back on track than the Obama spend/give awayplan. Most people critcal of him have not even heard him, they get their opinions from liberal media whom can't debate him. I challenge any non liberal to listen for themselves several shows. If you are liberal, he will hurt your feelings. If Obama was brave enough to debate Rush ad hoc, no speechwriters, as Rush has challenged, Rush would tear him up!

    March 5, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  3. Matt in Iowa

    Stopping the Republicans mind games is very important, and the best way to do that is to shine light on who plays them *cough* cough* RUSH! If we put attention on him at first intellectual people will start to look at the, oh wait, its the Republicans, their aren't any intellectuals in that party. They leave the thinking to the "liberal elite," while they sit and come up with half cocked plans to invade foreign countries 🙂

    March 5, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  4. Jack Jodell

    Rush Limbaugh is the modern-day Fr. Coughlin, and is equally as wrong and irrelevant today as Coughlin was in the 1930s. The ONLY difference between the two is that Limbaugh has a far, FAR bigger and more overblown ego than did Coughlin.

    March 5, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  5. Will-South Dakota

    Sen. John Cornyn of Texas >>>>not focusing on "the hard work that needs to be done to get America's economy back on track."


    March 5, 2009 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  6. Will-South Dakota

    GOP mantra>>>>>>DENY, DELAY DO NOTHING.

    March 5, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  7. John in FL

    What I find most surprising is there are 7 comments for this article and 240 comments about the Obamas' new swing set.

    March 5, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  8. Dan

    Should be more present ... Looks like a preacher, not a political adviser ... This is great ... The convinced one will remains convinced. The other will remember what the Bush era did with that kind of preach ... Don't believe ... Think .

    March 5, 2009 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  9. RLB

    So they attacked him by saying he was the leader of the Republican party and by answering questions that they were asked? They forced Limbaugh to say he hopes Obama fails? They invited him to speak at CPAC? They forced Limbaugh to attack Steele? And then they forced Steele to join Gingrey and Sanford as apologists?


    Republicans are acting like children.

    March 5, 2009 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  10. the idiot

    Cynthia@I am sure that if he wasn't paying taxes and was sitting at home collecting his SSI and food stamps, riding around on one of those free wheel chairs the Clinton adminstration provided all the fat people, he would be called a big, fat slob by the non-working scum liberals like you.

    March 5, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  11. mimi

    Neither ....he is an overweight redneck !!!!!!

    March 5, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  12. Joe Terrogano

    Stop blaming the Democrats!!!! The Republican neocons started this by giving Limbaugh a national lectern. Steele brought it to a head. If tubby wants to attack, he is going to get slapped down. Democrats don't need to bow to the "Godfather". You can't have it both ways, chuckling when Limbaugh takes a nasty swipe, and whining when he is called the "Wizard of Oz" of the Republicans. The fact is that your party is disintegrating into a bad comedy.

    March 5, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  13. Eop

    Is it me or Limbaugh looks like a hamster?

    March 5, 2009 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  14. Tom , Flagstaff, AZ

    Just look at Limbaugh. He's a monument to the absence of self-restraint. David Letterman once told him that he was "a big bag of gas." He's a big bag of something, that's for sure.

    March 5, 2009 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  15. Tim

    GOP 2012: Limbaugh/Coulter

    March 5, 2009 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  16. greed is not good

    Rush is clueless and ignorant...all he does is spread hate and lies

    March 5, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  17. anything to do with Rush is a waste of time

    so because he is a waste of time it is a distraction

    pretty funny, but a distraction

    he needs to lay off the chips and dip, put on some pounds

    probably the munchies from his drug habbit

    March 5, 2009 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  18. Darko

    They can't debate him, so they attack him. Over and over.

    I still haven't seen one rebuttal of his statements. Espcially the cpac speech.

    Rush says (loudly) what millions in the America are thinking.

    March 5, 2009 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  19. marastan

    The GOP honestly doesnt know how this guy is hurting them with the American People. What idiots. Keep talking Rush, please. It will be no time when we see you fail.

    March 5, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  20. Dave, DE

    Why do people in the GOP bow down to Rush? The man has never had the guts to run for a office! Rush is ok when he is behind the microphone in the cheap seats of the political game. I have more respect for all the GOP people who actually held an office. Rush has not the guts to run, because then people will find out about the real Rush Limbaugh.

    Rush if you think that you are so smart, then put up or shut up,run for a office. If not just keep your redneck ideas to yourself. Everytime you open your mouth Rush, the Democratic party gets stronger

    CNN please post

    March 5, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  21. Mat

    The more the GOP tries to point the finger at the DNC for "causing this issue" the more they stand behind what Rush said. For once the DNC is playing by the GOP playbook, you take something your opponent said that is negative and you blow it up and talk about it until they're fighting amongst themselves over it.

    Rush doesn't represent republicans, he just shouts the loudest, right next to Bill O'Realy and his fake TV News show. they're ego maniacs who love power money and do everything they tell their listeners and fans is wrong –

    This country needs Democrats and Republicans – we need competition in our politics and we need ALL of our Politian’s to be questioned and challenged. The Democrats need the Republicans like Luke Skywalker needed Darth Vader – otherwise you run out of story line and where is the fun in that?

    March 5, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  22. Tax Cuts can increase that certain part of tha male body!

    On the Republican side, Sen. John Cornyn of Texas sent an e-mail to supporters of the National Republican Senatorial Committee asking them to sign a petition demanding that the White House apologize for not focusing on "the hard work that needs to be done to get America's economy back on track."

    So Republicans have been focusing on getting the economy back on the right track? Really!?!?!

    So where are all their ideas?!?!

    Oh yea, I forgot, they have none, because their focus is on attacking other people's ideas.


    March 5, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  23. Frank, Las Vegas

    Rush playing the poor victim again. Remember he was a victim when he got his hand caught in the oxy jar too. When I saw him on TV over the weekend bouncing up and down, I think he now one hand in the cookie jar and the other hand in the oxy jar, again. When you see him, he looks exactly like what you picture a republican looks like, an old fat high high on oxy.

    Rush is joke and all the gutless republicans will follow him right down the river, never to be seen or heard from again.

    March 5, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  24. An American


    March 5, 2009 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  25. Gene

    This is going to make it easy for we independents to figure out who to vote for. It could never be Rush or any his children.

    March 5, 2009 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
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