Rush Limbaugh reacts as first Lady Melania Trump, and his wife Kathryn, applaud, as President Donald Trump delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020. (Leah Millis/Pool via AP)
world

Limbaugh draws bipartisan criticism for Buttigieg remarks

23 Comments
By ALAN FRAM

Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh drew bipartisan criticism Thursday for saying the country won't elect Pete Buttigieg president because he's been “kissing his husband" on stage after debates.

Limbaugh's comments came eight days after President Donald Trump awarded him the nation's top civilian honor during the State of the Union address. The president said, among other things, that the tribute recognized the millions of people a day the host speaks to and inspires.

Limbaugh, a staunch Trump ally who recently announced he has advanced lung cancer, made the remarks on his nationally syndicated radio show. Buttigieg has finished in the top two in Democrats' first two presidential contests in Iowa and New Hampshire.

“They're saying, ‘OK, how's this going to look?'" Limbaugh said Wednesday, imagining Democrats' thinking. “Thirty-seven-year-old gay guy kissing his husband on stage, next to Mr Man, Donald Trump.'"

Buttigieg, 38, is the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and has been married to his husband, Chasten, since 2018. Buttigieg was a U.S. Navy intelligence officer in Afghanistan, is a Harvard graduate and was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford University in England.

Limbaugh said he envisioned Democrats concluding that “despite all the great wokeness and despite all the great ground that's been covered, that America's still not ready to elect a gay guy kissing his husband on the debate stage president."

Former Vice President Joe Biden, who is challenging Buttigieg for the Democratic presidential nomination, assailed Limbaugh on ABC's “The View."

“I mean, my God,” said Biden, who called it “part of the depravity of this administration.” He added, “Pete and I are competitors, but this guy has honor, he has courage, he is smart as hell."

Some Capitol Hill Republicans said they disagreed with Limbaugh's remark, while others demurred.

“I'm just going to leave all that alone,” said conservative Sen Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., who said she'd not heard the comment. Sen Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, facing reelection this fall, also declined to comment.

“It’s a miscalculation as to where the country is at," Sen Lindsey Graham, R-SC, a strong Trump supporter, told The Associated Press about Limbaugh's words. "I think the country is not going to disqualify somebody because of their sexual orientation.”

Asked if Limbaugh should retain the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which Trump bestowed last week during his State of the Union address, Graham said, “Well, my God. Free speech still exists.“

Sen Rob Portman, R-Ohio, said of Limbaugh, “He may disagree, as I do, with their policy positions, but the question is what their qualifications are, not other issues.” Portman announced his support for gay marriage in 2013 as he revealed that his son Will is gay.

Sen Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn, a moderate who is retiring in January, initially said he wasn't familiar with Limbaugh's remarks and declined to comment. His spokesman later emailed a statement to the AP that said, "There may be reasons not to vote for Mayor Buttigieg, but that’s not one of them. This is a tolerant country.”

The Buttigieg campaign didn't immediately respond to a call seeking comment Thursday.

But the candidate has addressed criticism over his sexuality before. During a Des Moines, Iowa, rally in 2019, an audience member asked what he should tell his friends who say America isn't ready for a gay president. Buttigieg replied, “Tell your friends I said 'hi.'”

The former mayor has also framed his sexuality in religious terms.

"If me being gay was a choice, it was a choice that was made far, far above my pay grade," Buttigieg said. “If you've got a problem with who I am, your problem is not with me. Your quarrel, sir, is with my creator.”

Limbaugh's remarks were the latest tendentious turn in a career in which he's won an adoring audience among millions of conservative listeners, but condemnation from others for comments considered racist, sexist and offensive.

According to government websites, the Presidential Medal of Freedom is for “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.”

Past winners have included Mother Teresa, the Rev Martin Luther King Jr and Frank Sinatra. Under Trump, the award's recipients have included golfer Tiger Woods, supply side economist Arthur Laffer and Edwin Meese III, who was a top aide to President Ronald Reagan.

The 69-year-old Limbaugh also said some Democrats may believe they should “get a gay guy kissing his husband on stage, ram it down Trump's throat and beat him in the general election. Really? Having fun envisioning that.”

© Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


23 Comments

Comments have been disabled You can no longer respond to this thread.

What did you expect from Limbaugh?

Trump fans peddle that media is the enemy of the public but praise Limbaugh.

Go figure...

What a legacy Trump will leave.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Limbaugh is a moron.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Limbaugh is a moron.

Limbaugh is possibly the single most destructive voice in the history of American political discourse. He has helped ruin rational public debate on politics and culture, and has made a huge profit off doing so.

A truly hateful and cynical man.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Limbaugh is possibly the single most destructive voice in the history of American political discourse. He has helped ruin rational public debate on politics and culture, and has made a huge profit off doing so.

A truly hateful and cynical man.

I couldn't agree more.

And he's also a moron.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Limbaugh's comments

Are similar to those made by Supreme Leader Putin, like Limbaugh a hero of the global alt right pushing to undermine democracies and replace them with nationalistic authoritarian systems. Their messages are intended primarily for males who for whatever reason fear 'others'.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Limbaugh is a deeply unpleasant character for those of us who identify as liberal, but what he said reminded me of something reported earlier this week on JT about Buttigieg's win in Iowa.

Internal focus group data obtained by the McClatchy news organization last year showed that many black voters, an important Democratic constituency, could view Buttigieg's sexuality as a barrier.

If I were a voter in the US, I'd be happy to vote for either Buttigieg or Sanders in 2020. But how accurate or significant is the assessment of black voting patterns quoted above? Could there be an element of truth in what Limbaugh said?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There is a huge element of truth in what Limbaugh said. you just are not “allowed” to talk about such things in our far left cancel culture.

basically no one wants to see politicians deep kissing on a debate stage. Even less so when it’s 2 dudes.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

 Even less so when it’s 2 dudes.

I have trouble believing alt rightist's moralistic claims when they've come up with ways to defend their Trump's dealings with prostitutes and porn stars, his 'affairs', his alleged sexual assaults, his lies, his corrupt business practices, etc. etc. etc.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

no one wants to see politicians deep kissing on a debate stage. Even less so when it’s 2 dudes.

What makes you think gay men are more inclined to deep kiss on a debate stage?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Another Trump supporting loser.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Because they already did it and the media obligingly posted the pictures everywhere.

What makes you think gay men are more inclined to deep kiss on a debate stage?

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

basically no one wants to see politicians deep kissing on a debate stage. Even less so when it’s 2 dudes.

I really couldn't care less if they do or don't, if they are qualified.

Unlike you extremists, qualifications are what are important to the rest of the world.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Buttigieg won't be elected in 2020 or in the future because he's too fake, and like all the other Dems running, wants U.S. taxpayers to pay for illegals' medical care.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

and Mayor Pete has no qualifications to speak of. So how is he in 2nd or 3rd place?

why is he still around and yet other golden boy Beto is long gone?

checking that diversity box for the Dems that Beto couldnt check.

Unlike you extremists, qualifications are what are important to the rest of the world.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Buttigieg won't be elected in 2020 or in the future because he's too fake, and like all the other Dems running, wants U.S. taxpayers to pay for illegals' medical care.

You also said Trump would not win.

I have no idea how Pete will do, but your history of accuracy on projections tells me that if he doesn't win, it will be coincidental to your "logic".

5 ( +6 / -1 )

and Mayor Pete has no qualifications to speak of.

Yeah, he should have gotten some reality tv experience so he'd actually be qualified!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Mayor Pete has no qualifications to speak of. 

He should first run a few companies into the dirt, stiff his contractors, steal from his own charity, establish a reputation as a molester of women, and set up a scam university. Then he can think about running for president.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

oh thats cute. And all that was taken into account when he was still elected President in 2016.

Now voters can judge Mayor Pete in the same fashion. he is in 5th place nationally last I checked.

I dont see him winning any states. He has less than 8% in both South Carolina and North Carolina. Its just not gonna happen.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

And all that was taken into account when he was still elected President in 2016.

Yep. Which is why I brand Trump fans as losers.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

And this from the most recent recipient of the Medal of Freedom?

The award has been cheapened to that of a tacky Crackerjacks prize.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Limbaugh isn't a moron, but his thoughts on this are way out of touch with most Americans. Most being over 51%, probably closer to 70%.

Only 30% of republicans are anti-gay rights according to a Gallup poll. https://news.gallup.com/poll/27613/public-favors-expansion-hate-crime-law-include-sexual-orientation.aspx Newer polls show only a 3% difference, so Republicans are still not against gay rights.

The reasons that Mayor Pete won't be elected aren't because he is gay, but we conservatives don't need to make up fish tales about Democrats either. Their own platform does enough damage for anyone who cares to read it.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I'm just going to leave all that alone,” said conservative Sen Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., who said she'd not heard the comment. Sen Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, facing reelection this fall, also declined to comment

Bowing to the bigot vote they need. Spineless. Pathetic.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

and Mayor Pete has no qualifications to speak of. So how is he in 2nd or 3rd place?

Look at his competition. LOL

and Mayor Pete has no qualifications to speak of.

Yeah, he should have gotten some reality tv experience so he'd actually be qualified!

Don't forget employing thousands of people in multiple billion dollar businesses, and yeah, he had some bankruptcies like thousands of other business owners, but recovered and went on to be overall successful.

 I brand Trump fans as losers.

I'm sure you'll have a smart-ass comment to make when we "losers" re-elect him in a LANDSLIDE.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites