Here’s something you never thought you’d hear Rush Limbaugh say: I’m sorry. Well, sort of. After being caught in a firestorm of backlash and scrutiny (more so than usual, anyway), the conservative radio host quasi-apologized to Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke, the woman he called a “slut” and “prostitute” on his show last week in reaction to her testifying before Congress about government-funded contraception.
In a statement on his website, the controversial talking head said, “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.” Limbaugh then insisted his verbal attack on Fluke, which caused sponsors to pull out and President Barack Obama to speak up and show his support for Fluke, was a failed “attempt to be humorous.” (Ha ha?)
While Limbaugh stated he wanted to “sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices” he stuck to his guns about why he was using said insulting word choices in the first place. “I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress,” Limbaugh said in the non-apology portion of his apology, adding, “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?”
Ah, the all-too-easy irony of Limbaugh asking where to draw the line on “personal responsibility and accountability.” After all, this is a man who has said the following controversial statements over the course of his career:
- “[Japanese] refugees are still recycling their garbage, and yet Gaia levels them [laughs], just wipes them out. Wipes out their nuclear plants, all kinds of radiation. What kind of payback is this? That is an excellent question. They invented the Prius. In fact, where Gaia blew up is right where they make all these electric cars. That’s where the tsunami hit. All those brand-new electric cars sitting there on the lot….What is the mother of environmentalism trying to say with this hit?” –In response to Diane Sawyer’s report that Japanese were still recycling even after the devastating tsunami of 2011 hit.
- “I’ll guarantee you [President] Obama was hoping this was going to be a disaster as another excuse for his failing economy. If he’s out there blaming tsunamis, if he’s blaming earthquakes, and whatever natural disasters there are, this one was made to order, but it just didn’t measure up.” –Claiming President Obama was disappointed that last summer’s Hurricane Irene didn’t hit the East Coast worse. (Not fun fact: Nearly 40 people were killed because of the storm and more than 8 million Americans lost power.)
- “It doesn’t look like Michelle Obama follows her own nutritionary, dietary advice … I’m trying to say that our First Lady does not project the image of women that you might see on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, or of a woman Alex Rodriguez might date every six months or what have you” –Regarding First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative. He also suggested she should “look like an Ethiopian” for people to take her seriously.
- “NFL all too often looks like a game between the Bloods and the Crips without any weapons.” –The former football commentator (who eventually resigned for his statements about Donovan McNabb) on the NFL.
- “He is exaggerating the effects of the disease … It’s purely an act.” –Mocking Michael J. Fox and his struggle with Parkinson’s.
Which Rush Limbaugh statement over the past few years has been the most controversial, in your opinion? Or is it just too darn tough to pick just one? Did his apology to Sandra Fluke seem sincere to you? Share in the comments section below, PopWatchers.