March 27th, 2009
05:41 PM ET
13 years ago

Limbaugh's ratings spike amid Dem attacks

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Limbaugh's ratings are on the rise."](CNN) - A conservative media watchdog group says recent Democratic attacks on Rush Limbaugh may have given a big boost to the talk radio host's ratings.

According to the Media Research Center, stations that carry Limbaugh's day time talk show experienced a "dramatic surge" of listeners in February - the month when congressional Democrats and even President Obama publicly took swipes at the conservative talker.

"President Obama declared war on Rush Limbaugh and his ratings went through the roof," said Media Research Center's Brent Bozell. "If that's not a magnificent backfire, I'm not sure what is."

Democrats have been eager to paint the divisive Limbaugh as the de facto Republican leader, especially after the radio host's controversial statement that he hoped the president's economic policies would fail.

Obama himself warned congressional Democrats in late January that they need to "can't just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done."

Filed under: Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (305 Responses)
  1. Shawn

    Of course his ratings will spike. Does it matter? Anybody who listens to this fatfaced drug addict and felonious anti-American traitor would never vote for Obama anyway, and now the whole country know he is the Republican Master.

    Check Mate. Well played Obama!

    March 27, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  2. Joe in Austin

    Sounds like a win-win. Obama got political capital and Limbaugh gets more money.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  3. Kathy_in _Indiana

    I'm so glad that Rush Limbaugh is the leader of the Republican Party. I would really encourage him to run with Sarah Palin. Can you imagine what a team they would make... a yeller and a whinner for the Party of No.

    What a team!

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  4. Hmmmm....

    OK...does this surprise anyone?

    Does this mean the President may have cracked open Pandora's closet full of would be Limbaugh listeners? Uh Ohhhhhhh....there goes the neighborhood.
    Then again, curiosity killed the cat- but, as I was told, satisfaction brought it back.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  5. Mark

    A dramatic surge would be the desired effect for one who would be portrayed as the leader of the Republican party.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  6. Christian Pauly

    This is ridiculous. Do you really think Obama and the Dems CARE about Limbaugh's ratings? Sure, his ratings might be up... but the battle that matters is whether Limbaugh has helped the Republican party with his bolstering, and the answer is clearly a resounding NO.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  7. Rob

    Uh-oh, looks like the DNC's gonna be looking for some more ideas for billboards.

    Dems just can't face the fact that no, he's not the "de facto" leader of the Republican party, he's a person that loves what AMERICA stands for, and not the Democrat view and plan to destroy this country.

    Oh, and Barry, people are getting a lot more done listening to Rush than they are listening to you.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  8. Anne

    Sure, the Democrats had a part in Rush Limbaugh's rating's spike; but I think it may have more to do with Bill O'Rielly concluding his radio program last month.

    March 27, 2009 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  9. Kevin

    Dear Brent Bozo,

    I've paid more attention Rush lately, but it's not because I think he's interesting. If anything, he makes me watch to vomit. I just want to see what the leader of the party is planning, so there are no surprises from the GOP.


    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  10. RON

    Let's get our Country in order and not waste time with Limbaugh....people like him and our "Actors" are not really qualified to do much except "Act"....this is not reality and we need "reality" for God's sake.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. Gary in Portsmouth, VA

    I really wish Americans could stop being so divided. This us against them has got to stop. Division = collapse.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  12. Bob

    And when people see an accident on the highway, they slow down and look.

    This is the same thing. People were saying "Who is Rush Limbaugh?", so they tuned in and heard a partisan kook ranting about "the left" all day. Nothing more then a brief curiosity spike for this partisan nut.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. Film Professor

    You don't have to be a dittohead to understand this. Controversy drives ratings, ratings drive the money, and Limburger Mouth is all about the money. He's just like an old-time carnival barker , throwing red meat to the yahoo crowd,. who just eat it up and come back for more.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  14. Keep Texas Red!

    Good! That's what the Democrats get for trying to distract the American people away from the real issues facing the country and the truth. The American people are smarter than the Democrats give them credit for. What's your next brilliant strategy, Rham???

    March 27, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  15. Rob

    An increase in his ratings does not mean that he is popular; it just means that people want to hear what stupid things he says next. He will see a spike in ratings for a while, but once intelligent listeners realize that he is just recycling the same garbage over and over the ratings will go back down.

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  16. Bob Painter

    This always happens. For example, Fred Phelps' vehement hatred for homosexuals has done much more good for gays and lesbians than silence ever would have done!

    When people ridicule their opponents, others view this hostile environment as turf worth keeping their distance from. The average American wants its heroes to be above slander of their rivals. When backstabbing and slander become part of the fabric, Americans take those who are bitter to the cleaners!

    I am pro-gay and pro-Obama. Being thus, I thank Fred Phelps for his bigotry and the great strides he has helped the USA make towards equality for all; however, I ask my President and his sidekicks to take the high road, ignoring idiots like Rush Limbaugh or Sarah Palin.

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  17. David Kessler

    That's 'cause he's the only one worth listening to. And, as far as listening to Rush to get things done, well, isn't that what libs are doing by worshiping Obama?

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  18. Allan

    Numbers? Statistics? Evidence?

    If Brent Bozell tells you the sun is shining, grab your umbrella.

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  19. Suzi

    I wouldn't call one comment by Obama to Republicans a war on Rush Limbaugh, but that is typical of how Rush views himself. He likes attention.

    I personally felt the Democrats should have just ignored him. The president's comment was thoughtful and accurate. Republicans are in trouble and Rush hasn't been helping them. He's just been creating a lot of anger and distrust among conservatives instead of engaging them in offering new solutions from their point of view.

    I haven't seen anything creative or encouraging or enlightening about what Rush has said. He whole approach seems to be to tear down the efforts of others and the reason seems to be to give him more power. He's not doing anything constructive.

    He seems like a very sad human being who could use some prayers.

    March 27, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  20. vette78man

    If the observations and commentary of the MRC can be the subject of a "news" story, then I await similar coverage of columns in The Nation.

    March 27, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  21. Marjorie Friday

    The president did not declare war on anybody. Be careful of your words. I really think Rush has that much intelligence. He can strung a lot of words together but they make no sense whatsoever.

    March 27, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  22. james peckham

    why anybody would listen to that half bake hate monger is a mistery to me, but again these are the same a holes that love bush, and look were that got us.

    March 27, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  23. Thomas

    Thats Entertainment !

    March 27, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  24. Linda

    Yah, like I believe anything conservatives say. Probably the real truth is his ratings sunk like a rock and they're desperately worried.

    March 27, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  25. sandy

    Oh God, that's all we need is to give him a boost.

    March 27, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
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