Yet the Democrats have used this exchange in an attempt to manufacture a scandal. Senator Reid is collecting signatures to urge Rush to apologize to the soldiers (for something he did not say). Senator Harkin in a speech on the Senator floor, not only accuse Rush of tarring soldiers in uniform, but assigns Rush the motive of greed: “Now what’s most despicable is that Mr. Limbaugh says these provocative things to make more money. So he castigates our soldiers, this makes more news, more people tune in, he makes more money.” For good measure Senator Harkin speculates that Rush might be “high on his drugs again.”
It is breathtakingly irresponsible behavior for a Senator to attack a private citizen like this on the Senate floor.
If we are in the business of assigning motives, let’s speculate about the Democrats’ motives for smearing to tar Rush. A few weeks ago Moveon.org ran a tasteless ad smearing a military general for “betraying” the country. The leaders of Democrats were uncomfortably silent about this attack on a public servant and soldier. Democrats have also just had the disappointing task of acknowledging that the American war effort is going better than they expected. Their push for an immediate pullout of Iraq has been stalled. Tarring Rush Limbaugh as anti-American soldier helps with both problems: it satisfies their base, who has been disappointed with Congress’s inability to exit Iraq, and gives them an opportunity to say that they support the military in spite of the attacks on General Patraeus.
It’s politics at its worst. The media has taken the Democrats’ bait and are covering this as a controversy, as if there is a question about the validity of the Democrats’ charges. There is no question. The facts are clear.
Certainly someone needs to apologize—but it isn’t Rush Limbaugh.
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