Skip to comments.Why I Apologized to Sandra Fluke
Posted on 03/05/2012 10:29:09 AM PST by Kaslin
RUSH: Yeah, I knew it was getting bad. I was watching the media on Saturday, and I said, "You know what? I gotta call myself and cancel and suspend the Two If By Tea advertising." So I called myself to cancel the advertising. I got a busy signal so I couldn't cancel my own company's advertising. So Two If By Tea remains a sponsor of the Rush Limbaugh program and the Excellence in Broadcasting Network.
Great to have you here, folks, looking forward to talking with you today as the program unfolds before your very eyes and ears. Our telephone number, 800-282-2882, the e-mail address ElRushbo@eibnet.com.
While I have your attention, give me 30 minutes here. It's all I ask and then you can do what you want. I want to explain why I apologized to Sandra Fluke in the statement that was released on Saturday. I've read all the theories from all sides, and, frankly, they are all wrong. I don't expect -- and I know you don't, either -- morality or intellectual honesty from the left. They've demonstrated over and over a willingness to say or do anything to advance their agenda. It's what they do. It's what we fight against here every day. But this is the mistake I made. In fighting them on this issue last week, I became like them.
Against my own instincts, against my own knowledge, against everything I know to be right and wrong I descended to their level when I used those two words to describe Sandra Fluke. That was my error. I became like them, and I feel very badly about that. I've always tried to maintain a very high degree of integrity and independence on this program. Nevertheless, those two words were inappropriate. They were uncalled for. They distracted from the point that I was actually trying to make, and I again sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for using those two words to describe her. I do not think she is either of those two words. I did not think last week that she is either of those two words.
The apology to her over the weekend was sincere. It was simply for using inappropriate words in a way I never do, and in so doing, I became like the people we oppose. I ended up descending to their level. It's important not to be like them, ever, particularly in fighting them. The old saw, you never descend to the level of your opponent or they win. That was my error last week. But the apology was heartfelt. The apology was sincere. And as you will hear as I go on here, it was not about anything else. No ulterior motive. No speaking in code. No double entendre or intention. Pure, simple heartfelt. That's why I apologized to Sandra Fluke on Saturday, 'cause all the theories, all the experts are wrong.
What's gone on since and what really is going on here is what we all know to be true. Our president, Barack Obama, has a socialist agenda when it comes to health care, when it comes to birth control, when it comes to virtually every aspect of his agenda. In this case, Barack Obama wants the government, his government making moral decisions about what treatments, prescriptions, pills you pay for through your insurance premiums. He isn't willing to let you or the market make that decision for yourself.
Now, the hearing that started all of this, I want to go back and put the timeline here in context, start at the very beginning. The hearing that started all of this was called by Darrell Issa, a California Republican, he's the head of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Issa is on our side. His point in calling this hearing was to get facts into the record that otherwise would not be aired. But his committee is made up of both Republicans and Democrats, and there are rules and procedures that are followed in calling witnesses. What this was all about was the president of the United States acting extra-constitutionally, mandating that Catholic churches and their schools provide contraceptives, abortifacients. He doesn't have that power constitutionally. He cannot mandate these things.
That was the original purpose of the hearing. He was to get facts into the record that otherwise would not be aired, but his committee is made up of Republicans and Democrats and there are rules and procedures that are followed in calling witnesses. So the Democrats tried to play a game with Darrell Issa and his committee, and he rejected it. What they did was, they requested a witness for his hearing, a man named Barry Lynn to make their points for them. Barry Lynn is a guy that remits the Democrat point of view. They asked for him in advance. Issa's committee checked him out, invited him, and prepared for his testimony. Issa agreed he has a degree of expertise about the subject matter of the hearing, which was not contraception. That's what Obama wants to turn this to.
Obama is sorely hurting with women in preelect polls. He wanted to turn this into an issue much as they used to use abortion. So the Democrats played the game. What happened next is instructive, and it's very important. At literally the last minute the Democrats decided they want Sandra Fluke. What happened next, at the last minute the Democrats decided that Sandra Fluke would be a better witness for them, not because she had any special knowledge or credentials like Barry Lynn has, but because her optics as a woman and a college student, a 30-year-old college student and an activist on Democrat issues, by the way.
They thought all of that would show better than Barry Lynn. Now, this is at 4:30 p.m., 4:30 in the afternoon, the day before the hearing that the Democrats asked Issa to un-invite Barry Lynn, the guy they had asked for originally, and replace him with Sandra Fluke. Darrell Issa said (paraphrased), "Sorry, it's too late. She hasn't been vetted. We don't know who she is. She doesn't have any real qualifications to appear before this committee. We don't have the time to prepare for her and ask her questions. So the answer is: 'No. You cannot have her testify.'" All of this, by the way, is in a very interesting Washington Examiner article from last week, and I've linked to it at RushLimbaugh.com so you can read it yourself.
Now, the Democrats and the leftists sensed opportunity over this controversy that they created themselves. They publicly turned the situation they created to their own advantage. They invite Barry Lynn. They disinvite him at the last moment and they want him replaced with Sandra Fluke. "Who is this? We don't know who she is." The second panel of witnesses. It was Carolyn Maloney. If you don't recall last week, Carolyn Maloney, Democrat from New York, started shouting, "Where are the women? Where are the women?" They start saying Republicans hate women; they started attacking Issa and Republicans on the committee, saying, "They don't want hear from women! They're misogynist, sexist," or what have you.
Issa's committee invited the Democrat choice again, Barry Lynn, and the Democrats on the committee tried to replace him at the very last minute with this sympathetic woman when it was too late for the committee. So again they said no. So the Democrats played their game of lies, and Issa complained. On February 16th, he said, "The Democrats on his committee have appeared," this is a quote, "outright giddy in attempting to distort the testimony offered and purpose of the hearing." You bet they did. They wanted to turn this from a committee hearing on Obama and his unconstitutional mandate to the issue of contraception so as to bring back to life page 1-A of the Democrat playbook: Republicans Hate Women.
They wanted to change the whole subject. So how did they do it? Well, the Democrats have their own little subcommittee called the steering committee. This subsets inside the larger oversight and reform committee that Issa chairs. And they wanted their sympathetic witness on the record, Sandra Fluke. So they called her to testify before them, not Issa's committee. The subcommittee. They staged what was essentially a conference to look like a committee hearing. She gave the testimony that she was going to give to the full committee. It was taped and released and made to look like a committee hearing. And Darrell Issa had been right all along. Her testimony was not that of an expert.
It was just another non-expert person in this case, in Sandra's case: A 30-year-old, longtime birth control activist who went back to law school after a career of years of championing birth-control issues. In fact, she told stories less about birth control as a social tool (which was, of course, the left's true agenda) and more about birth control as a medication for treating other conditions, such as pregnancy. To the left, pregnancy is a disease. If you're listening to me for the first time, you may say, "Well, that's crazy." It's not. They treat pregnancy as a disease for political purposes. All of this, folks, is political.
Sandra Fluke gave vague examples based on unnamed friends who she says couldn't afford birth control to treat medical conditions they had, since Georgetown University wouldn't pay for them. Georgetown paid for all of their other medical treatment, but it wouldn't pay for the birth control pills that these doctors prescribed should they be necessary -- or so she says. We still don't know who any of these friends of hers are, these other women, and we don't know what happened to them. Her testimony was hearsay, and it was unprovable. And Issa was right not to let her give the testimony, particularly when the Democrats foisted her on the committee at the very last minute for the express purpose of pulling this fast one, this trick.
Now, let's get a few facts on the record here. Georgetown is a Jesuit University. It's Jesuits, run by the Jesuits, which are a Catholic order of priests. Their policy on birth control is not exactly a secret. It's not given to you in a sealed envelope after you sign up. It's out there for everybody to see. It's a Catholic university! Everybody that goes to there knows. Miss Fluke stated on occasion she went there specifically to change the policy. If birth control insurance is important to you as an enrolling student, and you find out that Georgetown doesn't offer it, you might want to attend (or work at) a school that isn't run by Catholics. I mean, just a thought.
But if you know the place doesn't offer contraceptives when you sign up, and that is your big political issue, then why are you really there? Actually, they know what they're doing. They intentionally target schools like Georgetown to advance an agenda of ultimately forcing them to abandon their religious beliefs. All of this is to serve Obama's agenda. The agenda he worked all summer on. He abandoned it only when America stood up, united, and this said they would not tolerate tearing down religion to increase government's control over our lives. You did that. You stood up to him. You made him stop. That was a proud moment for all of us.
This is his second attempt at mandating Catholic churches and other organizations (under the cloak of a so-called committee hearing) be forced to provide contraceptives against their moral conscience, dictates, what have you. So Sandra Fluke, a 30-year-old birth control activist gives unverified and inexpert testimony about how Georgetown's long-standing and public policy has hurt her unnamed friends. And let's be clear on something else. I haven't called Georgetown to see if they pay for birth control pills when being used to treat her medical conditions. I have no idea if they do or don't. If somebody at Georgetown wants to weigh in on that, I'd be interested.
But the point here is that this was an issue that represents a tiny, tiny slice of what the Democrats really want here. They use Sandra Fluke to create a controversy. Sandra Fluke used them to advance her agenda, which is to force a religious institution to abandon their principles in order to meet hers. Now, all of this is what I should have told you last week, 'cause this is what happened. I use satire. I use absurdity to illustrate the absurd. The story at the Cybercast News Service characterized a portion of her testimony as sounding like (based on her own financial figures) she was engaging in sexual activity so often she couldn't afford it. I focused on that because it was simple trying to persuade people, change people's minds.
I am huge on personal responsibility and accountability, people providing for themselves when they're totally able to. The government has no business doing any of this, getting in people's bedrooms and mandating that other citizens pay for other citizens' social activities and so forth. That was the wrong one to focus on. I acted too much like the leftists who despise me. I descended to their level, using names and exaggerations to describe Sandra Fluke. It's what we have come to know and expect of them, but it's way beneath me. And it's way beneath you. It was wrong, and that's why I've apologized, 'cause I succumbed. I descended to their level. Don't be mad at them or mad at her. Everybody here was being true to their nature except me. I'm the one who had the falling on this, and for that I genuinely apologized for using those words to describe Ms. Fluke.
Now, I've gotta take a break but I'm not through.
Do these pants make me look fat?
Old RUSH: "No; it's your FAT that makes you look fat!"
New RUSH: "Well; the preconceived idea embedded in the American male brain as to what constitutes FATNESS is certainly getting a workout in this instance."
Or SETTING them up!
On the other hand...........
Sarah!! It's safe to come out and play now!
Did you listen?
I agreed with what he said.....In fact I could see myself saying that exact same thing, after saying what he did...in the context that he said it.
Millions of Rush listener's have said over the years...."You are just saying, what I've been thinking". Period.
I don't always agree with anyone....let alone Rush. But, I've learned more info from Rush than you. Or anyone else...for that matter.
Is he the end all, be all?...Nope. Is he perfect? Nope. Are you? Nope. Am I? Nope.
Now, that’s funny!
I've eaten crow; you probably have as well.
It is NOT tasty at all; but HAS to be consumed to get over the ailment.
It depends upon what one washes it down with, as to whether the overall effect is refreshing.
In the last 15 yrs...have you been anything?
I'm sure that today's audience not only included all his regular fans but liberals nation wide and the entire MSM who were probably expecting Rush to be groveling and begging for forgiveness. They got quite the opposite......
They got the truth and the MSM is going to be hard pressed to spin his comments.......BRILLIANT!
Everything is about Money AND the hypocrisy of Personal Destruction AND Political Correctness defined by the LEFT.
They can use the N word, and the C word and the H-Hitler- word. They can demonize and destroy and move next door to you. They can draw you in their crosshairs while taking away your guns. They can deny you the words they use every day. It is only hate speech when it comes from our mouths. And we are the only racists.
We have come to the point where the First Amendment is secure only in Their hands. It only protects Them.
This is why Breitbart is our true hero. He would not be stripped of his right to speak and shout it from the rafters. He was not cowed by money. He got in their face and never backed down. He died at the ripe old age of 86 because he poured the life and energy of two days into the time we call one day of ours.
Political Correctness does not legislate tolerance; it only organizes hatred. jacques barzun
Im N C H MAD right now!
I hate ‘hate speech’ lawa.
And I want a First Amendment for Conservatives.
I see no IF.
A Statement from RushMarch 03, 2012
For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week. In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.
I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit?In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone's bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.
My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.
I know that I sure need it; a LOT!
Rush’s contribution to conservative ideas occured when he was starting out nationally. At that point he served as a “party line” for conservatives all over the country who never realized how prevalent their ideas were in America. Rush, by allowing these voices,not his, but their voices, to be heard resurrected a conservative movement that was dying of being totally ignored by the media. In the last ten or so years Rush has far fewer calls, many more bombastic “look at me”” soliloquies, and in general made it all about him. I understand where you’re coming from, but I don’t agree with you. if that makes me a troll than Free Republic is not the site it was when i joined in Aug 2000.
See my post 111, especially the last line.
I did listen and he is right in that, it is a tactic of the left to name call the way he did and that he should not sink to the left’s level of personal attack.
He and you and others can spin it however you like, it was an apology brought on by outside forces and that is my uneasiness in regards to it.
No one is perfect and we are fortunate to have one such as Rush on our side, but we are in the fight of our lives and we need our warriors to be warriors and not apologists.
His mistake was in making it personal and I didn’t hear him say that was his mistake, but rather that he used words that were inappropriate. They were not inappropriate to the argument, they were inappropriate in that they were directed at her and not at the nameless faceless “friends” she claimed on whose behalf she claimed to be testifying.
I would like to have him explore the subject of why those words are offensive to the left who believe that sex with an unlimited number of partners of all ages and genders is good and to be encouraged.
I am disappointed, but still a supporter and listener and eager student of the Limbaugh institute of conservative study.
Neither do I and that is the only thing about the apology which I would say was refreshing.
LOL, I have indeed had to apologize for saying the wrong thing to someone. It does leave a bad taste in the mouth, not because I had to admit my mistake, but because I just hate to be wrong, and admitting that I am just kills me.
But, I have done it, more than once because much as I hate to admit it, I am not always right. LOL.
Good thing we have “Two if by Tea” to wash it down.
Nah, you win........now please honor my request to you in the post you responded to......
She has been a long-time left-wing activist on these issues and was probably a public figure for these purposes even apart from her "testimony" the other day.
If she sues Rush for calling her a slut, then she opens herself up to the factual question of whether she is in fact promiscuous.
If she tries to sue him for claiming that she herself was taking birth control and spending $3000 on it, as opposed to only saying that about other people, then it is not clear what the reputational damage is. It does not appear tenable for her to claim that the public falsing believing that she herself took birth control pills and paid for them is somehow damaging to her reputation, given her long-held public stance on these issues. There must be damage to reputation for a defamation suit to be viable (apart from the per se category).
Therefore, it is difficult to see how a defamation claim by her would be tenable as a practical matter. If she sues for being called a slut, then she is open to the question of whether she is in fact promiscuous as a defense by Rush. If she sues for having statements falsely attributed to her, then there does not appear to be any reputational damage associated with falsely attributing such statements to here, especially given her own public stance on the issue.
And I thought it was FREE Republic. Is criticism of Rush now seen in the same vein as support for Romney? Why not petition the Robinsons to have me banned? That seems to be the way to go these days.
Because you're not worth it dude. When I'm faced with overwhelming stink, I just hold my nose and move on.......
Congratulations, you just hijacked this thread and made it about "YOU".
No. No. Just no. Hell no. I'm not certain you understand how extreme the 'public figure' test is under Times v. Sullivan. The answer is no. She was not a public figure for the purposes of Times v. Sullivan. Stretch it. Pull it. Try all you want. The answer is no.
Show me the wiki pages on her before her presentation. Show me all of the newspaper articles on her. Show me all of the youtube videos of her speeches and presentations and the times she's led movements. Show me all of her publications. Show me all of the web references to her name that are dated before her appearance. Give me the names of 100 people who knew who she was before she appeared before the Democrats. If she were a public figure on this topic then she would have been recognized by Congress and would have been permitted to testify on this topic instead of making some lame presentation in front of the Democrats
She. Was. Not. A. Public. Figure.
It’s totally fake. These same women paraded around in slut walks wearing tshirts with ‘slut’ and holding banners with ‘slut’ on them. They happily label themselves sluts.
You did not answer my question. What term(s) could he have used that would be acceptable to you? If he couldn’t call her a slut, what other word could he use you’d be okay with? Degenerate? Promiscuous? Whorish? Loose? Easy?
I was a student government representative in college ( many many years ago ) - and YOU, Mike have a good point. It's funny - but still a good point. Student Government has lots of money to allocate - I'm sure the folks at Georgetown would be thrilled to be first with this... the Democrat-media complex will give them all the 'coverage' they want... (no pun intended)
[ It was simply for using inappropriate words in a way I never do, and in so doing, I became like the people we oppose. I ended up descending to their level. It’s important not to be like them, ever, particularly in fighting them. ]
I liked his apology it more or less exposed their own tactics back to them.
Thank you, thank you.
“She. Was. Not. A. Public. Figure.”
Putting a period after every word is about as mature and effective as stamping your feet when arguing.
“If she were a public figure on this topic then she would have been recognized by Congress and would have been permitted to testify on this topic instead of making some lame presentation in front of the Democrats”
You are confusing the question as to whether she is an “expert” with the question as to whether she is a public figure on these issues. From her documented background, she has attempted to thrust herself into the public debate on these issues for years.
I am sorry to disappoint you, but a defamation suit by her appears highly problematic.
I did answer you.
Name calling is unnecessary and inappropriate. Period.
Ha! It sure isn’t the second worst word with the women I know.
I agree the c-word’s the worst. I think there are a few before slut however. Female dog (-itch) usually is number two with the women I know. Then I would say “whore” would be number 3. I’d even say pu**y would be before the word slut.
If someone acts like a slut, what is wrong identifying the person as a slut? If she’s not getting paid, it’s not right to call her a whore as they trade sex for money.
Since when can we not identify people by their behavior? We call liars, liars. We call prostitutes, prostitutes. We call murderers, murderers. We call thieves, thieves. We call cheaters, cheaters. We call degenerates, degenerates. But now, in 2012, according to you, we cannot call a slut, a slut.
That is why I am asking what term would you use for her that is acceptable that accurately describes her based on her behavior. You just want to punt the question. I want to know what term I can describe a person like her that WON’T offend you but accurately describes her based on her sexual activity.
Read her testimony. At no point was her personal sexual behavior mentioned. She testified on behalf of other women in real and/or hypothetical situations, not on behalf of herself.
I'm not going to hang a derogatory label on her when there's no evidence it's deserved.
Wow, I had not thought of that. But what you write is always subject to unintended consequences. I can definitely see the University of Oregon in Eugene where I live taking up this cause as a new right.
Really? Maybe it's a generational thing.
Some of you people over the years have made me sick. You wonder why we are losing? Because you superior intellects cause 10 times more damage than good to our cause. Bunch of crybabies who start tantrums when things don't go their way. Where the hell is this bitterness against the left? Against those who truly need correcting? Damned bunch of arm chair generals anonymously being big shots behind a computer screen. You all outta be ashamed of yourselves for being morons. Rush is the only person we got who tells it AT LEAST 90%. And AT LEAST 90% of the issues. WTF do you do??
Ahhh im wastin my friggin time....
there are 117 thousand companies lining up to get advertising with Rush. a lot of them being conservative owned companies. Rush commented on the companies who chose politics over profit. and he held back as laugh as he said by....
IOWs... you’re wrong. He had NO reason to apologize. If it was for Fluke and a possible lawsuit, it was already said and it would have been useless. His advertisers was have been the same thing. not one decided to stay because he said he was sorry.... not one. he apologized for the reason he said he did.
Or are you just reading the words I quoted from other cases and winging it?
For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week
Rush, quoted above.
Problem is, the Left is beyond “absurdity”, it’s into more or less bloodless (so far) coup territory. Into marxist revolution territory. It’s not fodder for humor and light banter. The left is actively and very aggressively destorying our country and taking away all of our freedoms. It’s not “absurd”, it’s tragic, it’s momentous, it’s dangerous and our lives are at stake.
You are wasting your breath hyperventilating over the “public figure” question.
As I pointed out, the viability of her claim is problematic because
1. It is quite unlikely that she would sue for being called a “slut” because that would open up the factual question as to whether and to what extent she is what might be considered promiscuous.
2. As to having falsely attributed to her the claim that she herself took birth control pills and paid for them, she doesn’t have a sound basis on which to argue reputational harm, which is a necessary element of a defamation claim in these circumstances.
Did you even read my post to you? I made these points to you before.
You are as far as I'm concerned.
This "don't descend to their level" is bullcrap. When you have people shooting at you, you damn sure better be shooting back with weapons just as effective as theirs.
You caved, Rush!
Before the apology, I supported you and the FReerpers that still support you, supported you. The left hated you before the apology, and it still hates you after the apology. So what has changed, and who changed it...YOU!
Yes. I read them. I apologize if I didn't adequately point out why I didn't agree with them the first time around.
It is quite unlikely that she would sue for being called a slut because that would open up the factual question as to whether and to what extent she is what might be considered promiscuous.
"Slut" isn't the only issue, although 'slut' is defamation per se in many jusidctions. Fluke wouldn't have to prove damages. They are presume in a per se defamation. In fact, 'slut' isn't remotely the primary issue. Limbaugh attributed dozens of specific statements about Fluke's sex life to Fluke. None of them were true. Limbaugh said Fluke was "immoral, baseless". He said she was a prostitute. Prostitution's a crime. That's defamation per se. Again, you don't have to prove damages. Rush made statements over and over, such as Fluke claiming she was "having so much sex, it's amazing she can still walk." Have you reviewed the per se rules for defamation regarding sexual debasement? Everything Limbaugh attributed to Fluke's mouth that she didn't say, and that was derogatory, is subject to a defamation claim. Not just the fact that Limbaugh said she was a 'slut'.
As to having falsely attributed to her the claim that she herself took birth control pills and paid for them, she doesnt have a sound basis on which to argue reputational [sic] harm, which is a necessary element of a defamation claim in these circumstances.
I don't think you're familiar with all of the things Limbaugh said about this woman. Was the "I'm supposed to have sex with three guys tonight" comment about her? Talking about her buying condoms in the sixth grade? I believe you're being delusional if you think all that's involved is whether he said she took birth control pills.
I think it is very odd that you accuse Rush of caving, yet you choose papertyger as your Freeper name
I think it is very odd that you accuse Rush of caving in, yet you choose papertyger as your Freeper name
I think we have a few anti-rush media matter propaganda trolls out in force.
This is no longer about a promiscuous useful idiot bluring abortion into contraception. This is now about stirring the mob into a two minute hate against Rush.
remember when Rush turned the smear letter from reid into gold.
I bet this will happen here too.
“A Boy Named Sue” was too cliché.
Got anything else?
should we start a thread where we all take turns appologizing to Mz. Fluke for her lack of proper social restraint?
that would be a funny vanity thread.
“To Mz. Fluke, with appologies...”
If you can find a FReeper with more solid history than me, I’ll eat your hat.
By the way, does anyone know when her Penthouse spread is due out?
Here's where this would get interesting. Let's assume Fluke is a limited public figure. You're a limited public figure only for the limited scope of the limited topic on which you came forward.
How would Fluke's statements before the Democrats put the frequency of her own sex life into issue and make it relevant for public discussion? Consider the scope of Fluke's actual statement. Not what Limbaugh said Fluke said and not what people are claiming she said. Assume that her own statement sets the scope of the topic for which she's a limited public figure. What's the relevancy of the frequency of her sex life?