March 2nd, 2012
02:06 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama calls Sandra Fluke, Limbaugh kisses it off

(CNN) – President Barack Obama called Sandra Fluke Friday to offer his support to the law student who has come under attack following her testimony to a House panel in support of access to contraceptives.

"The president was expressing his support for her and his disappointment in the kind of attacks that have been leveled at her and to her and his appreciation for her willingness to stand tall and express her opinion," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said at the White House press briefing.

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He said the president feels the personal attacks are "inappropriate."

"The fact that our political discourse has become debased in many ways is bad enough," Carney said. "It is worse when it is directed at a private citizen who was simply expressing her views on a matter of public policy."

Fluke was targeted by conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday, when he called her a "slut" and "prostitute" and again on Friday.

The conservative firebrand also responded to Obama's call with a kissing sound.

"Obama just called Sandra Fluke to make sure that she was alright, aw," Limbaugh said Friday. "That is so compassionate. What a great guy. The president called her to make sure she's OK."

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have weighed in on the issue. House Democrats rallied Thursday in response to Limbaugh's comments by sending a letter to House Speaker John Boehner urging him to condemn the statements, which to date has 80 signatures. Boehner on Friday called Limbaugh's remarks "inappropriate."

Several companies - including LegalZoom, Sleep Number, and Sleep Train Mattress - said in online postings that they were withdrawing advertisements from Limbaugh's program.

Filed under: President Obama • Rush Limbaugh
soundoff (161 Responses)
  1. Barbara Scully

    In the 60's our generation of women worked very hard to acquire a level of equal rights for ourselves and take control of our lives from old white men. After the recent shameful behavior by a man that is of little moral character against a young women I send out a call to all women to return to the streets and protect our civil rights. This is unacceptable behavior especially coming from a drug addicted ego driven white man. We will never again give up control of our bodies, we will make those decision for our selves and we will be treated as equals in this society. If need be we wil return to the streets, we have done it many times and will do it again. Women unit for self determination and respect.

    March 2, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  2. pb

    Rush Limbaugh has been steadily losing listeners and with the big salary he is being paid, he is becoming pressured and desperate. Why does the media even give him the time of the day? Without media attention, he will fade away and that is why he is desperate.

    March 2, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  3. FLIndependent

    It's way past time for this blowhard to be fired! Way to go President Obama – a president that really cares about the people! Limbaugh, Faux News and their ilk are the ones that have poisoned this country. There won't be any civil discourse until this garbage is thrown off of the airwaves. Limbaugh's wife must be so proud!! Apparently, she's like many other Republican woman that can't stand up for herself. It was a disgrace that three female Republican Senators voted for the Blount amendment – guess they're afraid of being thrown out of the old white men's club!

    March 2, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  4. shapiro

    Rush. is an idiot. His mother used birth control so therefore that make her a slot.

    March 2, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  5. American

    President Obama is a class act. Proud to call him our president.

    Obama 2012

    March 2, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  6. mike

    Limbaugh is a bullie . If he does not agree with you he resorts to name calling. Is this what the Republican Party wants
    it's message to be ?

    March 2, 2012 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  7. dcase20

    When are the people gonna realize this kind of hollow rhetoric is whats wrong with America. Whether you are right or left, no conversation can take place while either side is engaging in this kind of vitriolic garbage. Rush doesn't add anything, he just keeps the division going, while laughing all the way to the bank.

    March 2, 2012 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  8. BReal

    There is free speech and there is slander/libel and incidenary speech (racist) Ivan - you can't slander someone or call racist names - that is NOT covered!

    Ms. Fluke MUST sue Limbaugh for defamation of character and libel - there is NO other way!!

    March 2, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |

    TomInRochNY said it all. He's right.

    March 2, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  10. Cotton Eye

    Thousands of College students should boycot and demonstrate at every radio stations that syndicate Limbaugh!!

    College and university students boycot all those stations!! Perhaps advertisers will stop sponoring him and the radio managers!!

    March 2, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  11. LawrenceAZ

    Rush just couldn't stand Rick Santorum hogging all the "wacko" headlines. Limbaugh certainly raised the bar several notches for "most repugnant wacko". Disgusting!

    March 2, 2012 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  12. lucy2

    Ivan, do you see anyone throwing Limbaugh in jail for what he said? Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from consequences or public reaction. Why is that so hard to understand? Anytime someone says something offensive and gets some heat for it, there's always people crying "freedom of speech!" when it really doesn't apply to the situation.

    Contacting the advertisers seems to be the best course of action. All Limbaugh cares about is keeping his fear mongering game going, so hitting him in the wallet would have the most impact.
    And unless he bought them all on a street corner or back alley, we all helped pay for Limbaugh's Oxy binging, so maybe he should step back from this discussion and not throw stones.

    March 2, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  13. NotALemming

    Gotta love selective outrage. Where was the left when the media and pundits eviscerated "Joe the Plumber" for commenting on then-candidate Obama's wealth redistribution schemes? So much for "negative public discourse aimed at a private citizen expressing (his) views."

    March 2, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  14. pprty

    Can anyone tell me who the sponsor (s) of Limbaugh's program?

    March 2, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  15. c.jordan

    can someone post his shows sponsors and the products that they rep.Come on people now,l Lets show some people power and shut this man up now!!!!

    March 2, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  16. MalcmXcrement

    I see how this story fits into the liberal slant that CNN covers so well.
    My question is, where are the stories about the vulgar things that were said (yesterday) about Andrew Breibart by the ultra-liberal Matt Taibbi from Rolling Stone?? Crickets...
    Call me crazy, but if a well-known liberal blogger were to suddenly die at a young age, and if Rush were to say "Good, I couldn't be happier that he's dead", (among other less printable things), it would be headline news (in the case of CNN, it would be a centerfold). People see through your bias, CNN. That's why we don't trust you.

    March 2, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  17. SNoob

    One more example of just how out of touch Limbaugh is... He is an entertainer and should be treated as such. The fact anyone takes him seriously is beyond me.

    March 2, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  18. maf

    Boycott Rush and boycott Clear Channel Broadcasting. Clear Channel has a "ZERO TOLERANCE" policy which is clearly stated in their company Diversity Statement. Challenge Clear Channel to stop allowing Rush a platform.
    Misogyny has no place in today's society. Rush and those who support him, shame on you!

    March 2, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  19. dcase20

    @ Mark from Louisiana This little girl is not spending millions to swing an election in a state she doesn't live in. Why can't you guys tell the whole truth? My guess is you'd have nothing to win an argument with? Please try again.

    March 2, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  20. JustAO

    Is it me or does the entire Republican party have FOOT IN MOUTH disease? They seem to want Obama to win re-election in 2012 with all the crazies representing them and nonsense they focus on.

    March 2, 2012 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  21. ArpadtheMagyar

    Rush is first and foremost an entertainer whose landscape happens to be politics, just like Maher and Stewart. This is very entertaining. Rush as 20mm + listeners from 12-3 everyday. No one else comes even close to that kind of loyal following.

    March 2, 2012 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  22. alleygator

    Explain to me again how it's possible that Rush has such a string of unsuccessful marriages and relationships?

    March 2, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  23. Lisa P

    Limbaugh really needs to pull a Breitbart. I mean, come on! He's way overdue.

    March 2, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  24. andy

    understand, boehner didn't say it was inappropriate, his spokesperson did. boehner doesn't want to directly offend his boss.

    March 2, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  25. Jim in San Mateo

    Women need to decide who they want in the White House. A rich white man who thinks that men should be making health care decisions for them, or a President who things that women are smart enough to decide those things for themselves.

    March 2, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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