June 3rd, 2009
09:54 PM ET
11 years ago

Limbaugh ready to support Sotomayor?

Limbaugh could support Sotomayor, but said he still thinks she is a racist.

Limbaugh could support Sotomayor, but said he still thinks she is a racist.

(CNN) - A week after calling Sonia Sotomayor a "racist" in reference to her 2001 "wise Latina" remarks, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh said Wednesday he's now open to supporting President Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

"I can see a possibility of supporting this nomination if I can be convinced that she does have a sensibility toward life in a legal sense," Limbaugh said on his radio program.

Limbaugh's statement comes the same day former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who himself derided Sotomayor as a "racist" last week, wrote in an op-ed that he regretted his choice of words.

On his show Wednesday, Limbaugh said his potential support of Sotomayor stems from the nominee's unclear stance on abortion coupled with the fact that she is a Catholic.

"I don't know that it will ever happen, but if you know, the opportunity to get somebody like her, she's a Catholic, she's a devout Catholic, she's a Hispanic Catholic, Puerto Rican, they tend to be devout, she hasn't got a record on this. Normally liberals do have a record," Limbaugh said.

But, unlike Gingrich, the conservative talker did not back away from his contention Sotomayor is a racist.

I didn't know why he retracted it," Limabaugh said of Gingrich. "What is it? It's racism, reverse racism, whatever, but it's still racism, and she would bring a form of racism and bigotry to the court. But as I said yesterday, folks, I'm - I'm - I may look past that.

Meanwhile, Obama officials have said the president has not directly asked Sotomayor how she might rule in abortion rights cases, but California Democrat Dianne Feinstein - who met with Sotomayor Tuesday - said that the judge believes strongly in legal precedent.

"I believe she has a real respect for precedent and … if that is really true then I will agree with her, and I believe it is," said Feinstein, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Filed under: Extra • Rush Limbaugh • Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
soundoff (302 Responses)
  1. DougDC

    Too funny. First Rush suggests that she is a racist, then he announces that he might support the Judge because of her religion. Oh the irony

    June 3, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  2. Ernie in LA

    To Kay, You need to check yourself also. What does usuage mean??

    June 3, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  3. Kevin B

    Rush, Gingrich and the GOP leadership have seen polling data indicating the huge amount of damage they have done to the GOP's future chances in national elections. This is only reason there is any appearance of moderation.

    Mr Obama and the democrats are running circles around these clowns and they do not know how to deal with it.

    In this case the fear and hateful rhetoric lost.

    June 3, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  4. Terry, Cape Coral, Florida

    First he was against the Judge before he was for her... This sounds all to familiar....

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. Tim

    LaCrosse mom,

    Sotomayhor is a racist based on words that came out of her mouth. How is that a lie?

    Or you are now redifining racism the same way you attempt to redefine marriage?

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  6. Ryan (Charlotte)

    While i am a fan of Rush and agree with most of what he says, i consistently ask myself why is he constantly quoted all over CNN. He is simply a radio talk show host plain and simple. He is not a elected official and should not be treated as such. I love seeing the liberals so steamed over all of this.

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  7. That one

    what a clown....This has nothing to do with change of heart. Change of ratings I might say including comments from "elected" rethugs.

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  8. J.Crobuzon

    Too little, too late, and everyone knows you really meant it. Bill Clinton would take back Monica if he could; McCain would take back Palin. So, what did they threaten you with, Rush? More criminal prosecution? Search your car every day until you stop killing your own party with obsessive bigotry? Maybe even get your radio station's insurance company to demand pee tests of all employees? Because you sure didn't just happen to suddenly find you agree with Obama, Pelosi, and Reid about the wisdom of appointing a wise Latina woman to the bench, did you?

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  9. Leonard

    Sorry, Rush did NOT flip-flop or whatever the term is. The state run MSNBC reporter only heard what she wanted to hear in his comments. He said again after hearing this that she is still a racist! Oh and by the way, it was OK to call Republican nominiees racist? We can talk about pubic hair on a Coke can but we cant use the term racist?

    June 3, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  10. Dan

    Rush is too fat to flip. He just flops

    June 3, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  11. strong

    Limbaugh aside for a moment ..... people make out as if racism were the worst thing in the world. Racism is everywhere in the world, in varying degrees. Nobody is racism-free 100%, nobody. Why must everything, or so it seems, be racism-based or blamed on racism? How tiring to listen to all this.

    June 3, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  12. Whoever is winning, I'm for them...

    He only did this cause he knows he can't win...Just like when he was telling everyone to vote for Hillary...If she'd been elected he would have taken all the credit. Since she didn't he backed off and said maybe Obama having the nomination is good. "He is the weaker candidate."

    June 3, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  13. Lisa B

    Someone put a bug in their ears. They have really tainted the Republican Party. I don't think their comments will go away that easy. The damage is done.

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  14. Kevin B

    The democrats and Mr Obama are handing the GOP thier heads over and over again. Maybe now they will begin to reach across party lines and work on behalf of all americans, not just thier own narrow interest.

    We can only hope............

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  15. AJB

    I wonder if his ratings have dropped – that's the only way you could get the blowhard to admit anything of this nature.

    Why would anyone listen to this bitter, bigoted loser? C'mon folks – he did so much hillbilly heroin that he made himself deaf! Is that intelligent? Is that someone to listen to and respect? Not in my household.

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  16. Todd

    Rush is quickly turning into a light weight like Sean Hannity. No one is taking them seriously anymore. They are just entertainers that say what their core audience wants to hear and therefore lack any real credibility. They would have said the exact same type of statement towards anyone who Obama picked as justice. They are so predictable and just simpleton lightweights. Newt at least says what he really feels and does not just toe the far right line. Rush and Hannity have turned themselves into cartoons.

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  17. JT

    Oh, The GOP memo must have gone out last night. These ridiculous people! Even more ridiculous are the followers of them.

    Fact is – Newt, Rush, Pat Buchanan, Sessions, Tancredo, and Lindsey Graham made hard, r@cists comments. You can't just say that in unison coming from the GOP, then turn around a couple of days later and say Sotomayor's a great person, and not have a major, major credibility problem.

    Their apology is NOT BELIEVED. They need to apologize directly to Sonia Sotomayor – all of them. I believe Pat Buchanan was just out today saying the same thing. Also Lindsey Graham has not apologized. I can't even believe anybody was quoting Tancredo to begin with.

    The GOP has Zero credibility. What a way to send the rest of their <12% support base running away in disgust.

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  18. Missy in KY

    Why do these people use the Bible and religion when it is convenient for them? Why wasn't abortion a major concern when we had a pro-life president? Wouldn't that had been a prime opportunity to have made effort against abortion? No, Limbaugh and Gingrich use this issue, like so may people who call themselves Christians, when they can't stand a Democrat in office. Hypocrites!

    June 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  19. Whatz up

    Rush is so SCREWED up he doesn't know if he's coming or going. This guy is FULL of BS. He's got NO credibility and is a nobody when it comes to Washington Politics.

    All Rush is .. is a man with a BIG MOUTH and TALKS TRASH!!! That's it.

    Do you know how many Rushy's are out there doing the same dam thing? PUH-LEEZE, Rush Limbaugh is a FRAUD and FAKE-MAKE WANNA-BE.

    My uncle Bubba would put Rush to SHAME!!! Rush may think he's bad, but he hasn't met Uncle BUBBA. Whew... Uncle Bubba don't play and he'll set Rush Limbaugh straight.

    June 3, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  20. AD

    OK.. Let me get this straight. She is a still a racist but he will go along with it because she is Catholic. You have got to be kidding me!!!

    OK.. Out with it!! Who pulled Newt and Rush aside and told them to shut up. Come on!! We are waiting!!!!!

    June 3, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  21. Erin

    Sounds like the GOP had a secret meeting earlier this week and realized a few things:

    A) Sotomayor is going to get confirmed no matter what
    B) Complaining about it and being the "opposition" party only makes them look rediculous considering this was originally a Bush appointee.
    C) Most importantly – they know that Hispanics are soon going to be larger in population then any other minority group – and even whites soon. Starting the year off by making them angry was a very dumb move... and even Rush & Newt are now realizing that it's political suicide to take this fight any further
    D) This has NOTHING to do with Sotomayors potential views on Abortion.

    June 3, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  22. Libbie

    Limbaugh has a careful strategy here. His mission is to raise doubt in the minds of the liberals on Sotomayor's position on abortion. If he comes out with statements that she may have the "right" position, he may scare some of the Dems away from voting for her confirmation, letting Obama's pick fail through the actions of his own people. Brilliant, as always.

    June 3, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  23. Repub in VA

    read the transcript, rush said he was not retracting his claim that she was a racist. he only made his point about her being pro-life to point out why she scares the far left wingers.

    its unbelievable how CNN is distorting his words. sadly, most people will just be spoon fed their opinions of rush even though they don't listen firsthand. liberals dont know how to think for themselves.

    June 3, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  24. Austin

    I'm just calling a big ol' BS on that one. What Rush is saying is that if Sotomayor's views were COMPLETELY different, he might change his mind. He still needs to apologize for those attacks, and places like CNN need to stop pretending his voice is relevant.

    June 3, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  25. fishy fish

    When Rush, who only cares about his ratings, not the Republican party starts retracting what he says, then you really know that their (Republican) party is in trouble.

    June 3, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
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