May 6th, 2009
08:22 PM ET
12 years ago

Limbaugh to Powell: 'Become a Democrat'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Limbaugh took aim at Powell's comments about the GOP."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) – Rush Limbaugh fired back at Colin Powell for his critical comments earlier this week, saying Wednesday that the former secretary of state should join the Democratic Party.

"What Colin Powell needs to do is close the loop and become a Democrat instead of claiming to be a Republican interested in reforming the Republican Party," Limbaugh said on his radio show Wednesday.

Limbaugh also took aim at Powell's decision to endorse President Obama over John McCain during the presidential election, repeating his earlier sentiment that Powell's move was "solely based on race."

"He's just mad at me because I'm the one person in the country who had the guts to explain his endorsement of Obama," Limbaugh said. "It was purely and solely based on race."

During a speech on Monday, Powell said the "the Republican Party is in deep trouble" and said the GOP would be better off without Limbaugh, according to a report by the National Journal.

"I think what Rush does as an entertainer diminishes the party and intrudes or inserts into our public life a kind of nastiness that we would be better to do without," Powell said.

Earlier: Powell: GOP 'polarization' backfired in election

Filed under: Colin Powell • Extra • Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (298 Responses)
  1. Boston

    Rush is absolutely correct about Colin Powell, as he is about most things.

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  2. Dan, TX

    I know Colin Powell loves America. Limbaugh loves Limbaugh. Sickening that Limbaugh has control of the Republican party. I am coming to loathe anything to do with Republicans. As a fiscal conservative, my best bet is to join the democrats and support the blue dogs and take power away from the liberals from within.

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  3. ben jackson

    rush says powells endosement of obama was based solely on race, and rush's endorsement of mccain was based on?????....c'mon rush, other than running ur mouth, what have you done for this country?

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  4. Robert Vaughn

    Why anyone pays attention to, or give credence to anything Limbaugh says is totally beyond comprehension. He is an obese,cigar puffing, drug addict whose only claim to fame is to be able to talk via the media and influence educationally and intellectually challenged people into following his hate filled rantings and dogma. What is even more ludicrous, is the fact that people actually love the moron and believe what he says to be the gospel of the GOP.

    How he can be critical of anyone who has served his country as illustriously as Colin Powell, is totally absurd. Colin Powell is much to dignified and honorable to lower himself to the level of sewer crawling that Limbaugh performs daily.

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  5. James M. Holmes

    Call me crazy... but I LOVE Rush Limbaugh!

    He is doing all of America a service... by driving the GOP completely off the political cliff and making sure it will be seen by any rational American as nothing but a party of close-minded rednecks, radical racists & mentially insane white collar criminals!

    Between Obama's brillance and leadership and Rush Limbaugh showing the true face of the GOP... It is safe to say the party of of "NO" is doomed to stay irrelevant for the forseeable future...

    ...oh and Republicans... please, please run Sarah Palin as Obama's opposition in 2012... PLEEZE!!!

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  6. Expat in Canada

    Yup, another moderate that Rush wants out of the GOP. Not much longer until the Republicans become another fringe party. Either we'll be a one party system in 4 years, or a three party system (Dems, Reps and a third moderate party), but regardless, the GOP will be finished as a major party if they keep moving to the right and kick out the middle.

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  7. minnie

    I know several people who have left the democratic party as I have., becoming republicans. That was back in our ignorant days. Glad I know where I need to be.

    May 6, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  8. slipthalo

    When has Rush Limbaugh done anything worthwhile in his lifetime?
    He is not worthy to wipe the rear of Colin Powell but criticizes him? You are a waste – why anyone listens to your hate filled and unintelligent rants is beyond me.

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  9. Peter

    its amazing that someone who has not contributed or aided anyone but himself could be taken serious enough to have a voice. Its really sad. Rush is the eastbound end of a westbound horse....

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  10. Jackie in Dallas

    Of course, Limbaugh would call for Powell to become a Democrat...Powell threatens his position of power in the GOP.

    Powell is a sensible and intelligent man who was victimized by the Bush Administration. Imagine lying to your Secretary of State to get him to go along with a war that didn't meet the Powell Doctrine?

    For those of you who don't know what that is, Colin Powell developed a series of questions ALL of which had to be answered affirmatively before military action was called for. He based it on the criteria developed by Casper Weingarten, Sec of Defense under President Reagan. Those questions are:
    1) Is a vital national security interest threatened?
    2) Do we have a clear attainable objective?
    3) Have the risks and costs been fully and frankly analyzed?
    4) Have all other non-violent policy means been fully exhausted?
    5) Is there a plausible exit strategy to avoid endless entanglement?
    6) Have the consequences of our action been fully considered?
    7) Is the action supported by the American people?
    8) Do we have genuine broad international support?

    If Colin Powell had known the truth of the intelligence the President and Vice President had, he would never have agreed to argue for the invasion of Iraq. He was fired/resigned when he found out the truth - and when it became obvious that questions 3,5,6, and 8 could never be answered affirmatively.

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  11. Rush is a slob

    I agree with Powell, I hate Limberger and he is ruining MY PARTY.

    We need to include people that we agree with MOST of the time and not just stick to some STUPID setforth doctrine, we need to enlarge our base and that should include people that don't alawys agree with you 100 percent of the time.

    The only person I agree with 100 percent of the time is ME, so should I only include single like minded people in my world, HELL NO.

    Shut up Limaugh, your way "aint" working, time to move on with Michael Steele and his moderate vision of what a Conservative can be.

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  12. Charlotte

    Limbaugh's dirty fear is showing. He's terrified about his pending irrelevancy. He has wallowed in his pigsty of being the "banner carrier" for the Republicans and thus now that the GOP is starting to rethink itself, he's desperately clutching to his 'leadership' role. In other words, he knows they are about to give him the old heave-ho and he thinks that by getting uglier and even more shrill, he somehow can forestall this. I kind of hope he succeeds, because I'd like to see the Repubs continue to be unwanted, unneeded and irrelevant for years to come, but most of them have just GOT to find him sickening and they know that if they keep yielding to him and the nutcases who slavishly dote on his every word, they will remain the Big Losers that they are at the present. Not ALL of them are that stupid...

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  13. Heidi

    Wow. How did politicians allow for this radio blowhard to be the Republican kingmaker. Republicans are so afraid of Rush and his millions of listeners. They're afraid of losing their "base" if Rush decides to turn against them.

    It's rather scary in this country when an uneducated, drugg-addict bigot wields more political power than elected officials. The Republican leadership allowed this to happen.

    May 6, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  14. peter smith

    Rush is so good at speaking to people that live foe race issues. It give him a very good pay check. Ignorant ones that can't see that America has changed as the world has, are the people we must live with. these people can't see that Rush really don't care for them,just his next check,while they only wait to die.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  15. Kenyan Wonder Kid

    Nice CNN headline: "Takes Aim", and "fires back"! How about "Challenges", since Powell has a lot to explain himself, although no one asks him the questions? Oh, that wouldn't fit with James Carville's "hate" story line that he and the complicit press are fomenting about Repubs, and especially Rush and Sarah. Rush's comments were spot on, not the least bit hateful, and beg that Powell repond to some of these legitimate issues.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  16. Daniel Burse

    It is amazing to me how many conservative talk show host and their followers think black people voted for Obama cause he's black. There have been many black men that have run for President. Al Sharpton was on the Ballot in 2004. Did black people vote for him? And he has a lot of Black support but NOT for President. So let me explain it to you. Black people ARE EDUCATED voters. We vote for intelligent people who we think will represent our Political Ideology. Every time the BIG MOUTH self important Rush opens his mouth he helps keep the Republican Party even further away from Most minorities.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  17. Chris

    Can we shut this guy up? I am a Republican and I am sick of here Limbaugh talk. He sits there and talks trash about all the other Republicans and HE is the one that is dividing the party. However, CNN seems to think that he is the leader of the Republican party and he definitely isn't. They are clearly bias because whenever he speaks, they seem to write a lengthy article about it. Who cares? Nobody pays attention to him anymore but CNN sees the opportunity to beat a dead horse and exploit the Republican Party.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  18. Proud American

    What is it, unless you preach hate and seperation you can't be a republican? This Idiot will say anything to get in the news.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  19. riteaidbob

    Mike from Vancouver BC May 6th, 2009 4:04 pm ET

    That's right Limbaugh, kick out all the moderates and you'll have exactly the party you want.

    Moderates get you LIBERALISM since they spend their entire time pandering to the left. Godd ridence. Powell is no Republican.

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  20. Ekbaaaaaaal from AZ


    You are such a smart and decent guy but you don't seem to understand one BASIC LITTLE thing

    – Limbaugh IS the financial backbone of our party!!!! The entertainer, you say, is the bread winner and so ALL the mudhapakkahs have to listen to him- get it????

    Reforming GOP – I have lost it already – forget it. As long as Boehner and Mcconell are there, we can't do it!!

    May 6, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  21. Ben


    So if Collin Powell's only reason for voting for Barrack Obama for President was that he was Black. What was your (Rush) reason for voting for John McCain? If was for his stance and policies then maybe, just maybe he felt the same about president Obama like many other people.

    May 6, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  22. Donald Hochanadel, Sr.

    Rush Limbaugh is as great an American as I know of. You liberal democrats will only realize that after Obama the thug drives this country in the ground and you will be looking for food at the junk yard. Just wait and see. Your problem is that you listen to and believe all the media pro Obama BS.

    May 6, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  23. Kajaan

    thatk god for people like Rush .....the democrats will rule the white house as long as he is around !!!

    May 6, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  24. John

    Limbaugh to Powell: 'Become a Democrat'

    If anyone needs to know who's really running the GOP, you have your answer above.

    So much for the "big tent" myth.

    May 6, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  25. Kevin Cantu

    I begging The GOP to continue listening to the likes of Rush. Oh my dreams are coming true....I'm so happy the GOP is busting at the seems and glad to hear people like Rush Limbaugh demean Colin Powell...It gives me great satisfaction know that someone who never put on the uniform can try and put himself in the same league as Colin...It's just awesome...I'm about to cry because I love to see the GOP fracture after all this time.

    May 6, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
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