March 3rd, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Is Rush Limbaugh running the GOP?

From CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Rush Limbaugh is the face of the Republican Party - at least that's how some Democrats want it.

Is Rush Limbaugh running the GOP?

Does Rush Limbaugh run the GOP?

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel calls Limbaugh the "voice and intellectual force and energy" behind the GOP and Press Secretary Robert Gibbs says he's "a national spokesperson for conservative views." This after the radio host recently repeated his claim that he wants President Obama to fail.

It also comes at the same time as a dust-up within conservative ranks between Limbaugh and Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee. Over the weekend, Steele called Limbaugh an "entertainer" whose comments are "ugly."

Needless to say, Limbaugh has had a field day with all the finger-pointing, going after both the Democrats and Steele on his radio show. Limbaugh insists he's not in charge of the GOP and doesn't want to be. He says considering the sad state of the Republican Party, he would quit if he were chairman.

As for Steele, the radio host also suggests he appears to be supporting President Obama and Nancy Pelosi and that he is being used by the "liberal media."

Well, after Rush's millions of listeners heard that one, it took Steele about 3 minutes to backpedal, reaching out to the right-wing radio host to say he was sorry... that his words came out wrong, that he has enormous respect for Limbaugh... and that what he actually meant was that a lot of people want to make Limbaugh the "bogeyman" when he's not. Steele said today he has spoken with Limbaugh and quote "we are all good."

Here’s my question to you: Who's running the Republican Party, the RNC or Rush Limbaugh?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Rae from Indiana writes:
I don't know if Limbaugh is running it or not, but apparently anyone Republican who says anything remotely critical feels compelled to apologize to him. The fact that they feel to need to apologize to someone who spews hatred and division for a living tells me all I need to know about the party of values.

W. from Salt Lake City, Utah writes:
Being a trucker’s wife, I can tell you Rush’s audience is 99% truck drivers. It's their only entertainment. The best part is they don't vote. My husband believes every word Rush speaks. After 30 years of marriage, I can tell you he has never voted nor have any of his trucking buddies!

Matthew from Cedar Rapids, Iowa writes:
Running? No. Dividing? Yes. Michael Steele was chosen to lead the GOP because it is in shambles. They've lost control of the White House as well as Congress, and their voter base is waning as people, like Rush, drive away women, blacks, Hispanics, and almost everyone who isn't a wealthy white man.

B. writes:
It may not be pretty, but it is pretty obvious. Rush Limbaugh speaks for the GOP, a party without conscience or direction. A collective voice which has expressed a desire to see the government fail in its obligation to act upon the will of the people. This is the message the GOP has chosen to represent the party going into the next decade.

Ja from Tallahassee, Florida writes:
Rush Limbaugh is the only person to come along in many, many years who tells the truth and doesn't care if anybody is offended. It would be a boon to the RNC if they would push for Rush to be their candidate for president in 2012. He sure has my vote!

Andrew from Tucson, Arizona writes:
Rush is at his best when he's portraying himself as the victim. Mainstream media has taken the bait. He's become the story, so he's happy.

Ann from Charleston, South Carolina writes:
So far I think the RNC is running the Republican Party. The only thing Rush Limbaugh is running is his mouth.

Filed under: Republican Party
soundoff (203 Responses)
  1. M. Leah Davidson Vancouver B.C. Canada

    Of course he is. What other reason is there, for all the apologies and words of praise from Steele, Jindal etc.

    He has the entire GOP shaking in their boots! I still can't figure out why that is. Maybe they have a collective "little black book" Rush stumbled on to. It is a mystery to me. Please find out for us Jack, I'm dying to know.

    March 3, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  2. Katiec Pekin, IL

    Well, Jack, it appears that way. Anytime a republican disagrees with him they quickly apologize, worried about his response and lack of support. Rush, at least says what he thinks(?). The republicans also want our President and our country to fail, but they hide behind their lies, distortions, party first mentallity, attacks and hypocrasy. Yet, they agree with Limbaughs outlandish, ridiculous, unAmerican rantings.
    Pretty sad, isn't it?

    March 3, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  3. Ryan

    I hope so. He is one of the most shameful vile humans around this country. If he is running it, they will never regain promimence as a party and that is a good thing.

    March 3, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  4. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    Anyone who seriously thinks Rush Limbaugh is in charge of the Republican Party has a bigger drug addiction than he does.

    March 3, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  5. will charleston,sc

    When you see senators, congessmen and the RNC Chairman on their knees begging for Lord Rush's forgiviness, one can only think that he is the Republican In Chief.

    March 3, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  6. JD in NH

    Definitely Rush. First it was Rep. Gingrey begging for his sins to be forgiven (one of the most embarrassing moments in modern day politics), then the likes of Tom Delay and Rick Santorum parroting the "we want Obama to fail" talking point issued by Limbaugh and now Michael Steele is scraping and bowing, trying his hardest to get back in the good graces of the bloated, hateful entertainer. If you plotted to make a party implode it wouldn't be nearly as effective as this.

    March 3, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  7. Jackie in Dallas

    The RNC? They can't run a web site, much less the whole party. As for Rush, well, he’s at least trying to, and it is not to the benefit of the party.

    Trying to run the GOP is like herding cats; it’s possible to do if you are willing to drag the right bait in front of them, and are willing to be scratched and bitten!

    March 3, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  8. Karl from SF, CA

    Jack, the answer is; no one is running the Republican Party. If anyone was running the Republican Party we would know who it is and not asking this questions.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:08 pm |
  9. Becki Tyree

    Rush Limbaugh represents everything that divides this country. Fortunately, the majority of Americans don't believe the hype this deseperate, insignificant 'has-been) .

    I say, let the Republicans continue to let him be their voice, it appears to be the only voice they have. The country will be better off when more republicans are out of the way completely, It appears eveident out of touch old men who want see the dimise of the middle and lower class.

    Is it just me, or has everyone forgotten he is well known here in Florida for buying illegal drugs to support his DRUG habit. Go figure!

    March 3, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  10. Charlie in Belen, New Mexico

    After watching part of the televised CPAC speechs, I would hazzard a guess that at this point there neither direction, or leadership in the Republican Party. The elected members of the party appear terrifed of Rush Limbaugh and the "right wing" of thir party. They rail against the policies of President Obama using the treadbare reteric of the past that has brought us into this mess. They do not present alternative policies, just a negative attitude..... Oh Yes, and would someone PLEASE point out to Mr. Limbaugh that the promise of "Life, Liberty and the Persuit of Happiness" is from the Declaration of Independance. NOT the Constitution as he stated......(It is difficult ot take anyone serious when they don't know the differance between the Two single most importain documents in this nation's history.)

    March 3, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  11. Bill in South Jersey

    As a liberal, my vote is for Rush. And if he's ever dumped, I hope he's immediately replaced by Sarah Palin.

    To the DNC, please talk about other things and give Rush all the air time he can possibly get. Democracy is all about choice, and he's drawing the lines more clearly than you possibly could.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  12. Spencer from Virginia

    No one's running the GOP. Those guys are like a dog chasing their own tail.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:16 pm |
  13. Dm

    Yes Jack, The formely addicted to black market drugs radio host is speking for the GOP.Wow this is sinking to an all time low.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:17 pm |
  14. Diana in NJ

    He is doing something to it.... when he has then all running scared.. and I heard his back up is Joe the Plumber..They are to keep things steady till the 13 year old who made more sence than either of them.. is old enough..

    March 3, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  15. T. G. from the virgin islands

    The impression I am getting is that Rush Limbaugh is running the GOP. When Limbaugh started ranting about how he hopes President Obama would fail, the majority of the Republican leaders were silent. The only person who was the closest to stand up to Limbaugh, except for Mike Huckabee, was Michael Steele. But after a few days, even the RNC chairman recanted.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  16. Joe in DE

    Nobody is running the GOP. They picked Steele as Chairman but will pay no attention to him. Limbaugh runs the right wing fringe people who don't think.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  17. John in Atlanta, GA

    Apparently it is the Rush. Michael Steele may try to speak like he's hip and has control, but his recent smacking up side the head has proven he's a punk. Living in Georgia, Phil "I'm a stright Punk" Gingrey has shown his lack of go-nads.

    The Republican Party is slowly twirling around the toilet bowl and the "Captain" of the ship, by default, is Rush. The sad part is, they are singing great Pirate songs as the ship goes down. They believe they will be back...maybe as Zombie Conservatives.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  18. Ray Lawson from Danville, VA

    Rush Limbaugh leads the Conservative Party. I don't know who leads the Republican Party in Washington. I see very little difference in most of the Republicans in Washington and the democrats in Washington. They aren't conservatives, they're mostly socialists. Hopefully Rush will help them see the error of their ways and return to the Conservative Party.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  19. Tom, Bradenton

    Rush Limbaugh is a clown.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:38 pm |
  20. el

    Hi Jack

    Unfortunately for Steele, it would seem that Limbaugh has more of a public persona. But to say he is actually running the GOP is wrong. Limbaugh as Steele stated, is an entertainer. And we all know it takes more than that to run a party that is slowly dying a painful death. The Grand OLD Party needs to revamp, reorganize and rebuild if they stand any chance in 2012. Better yet, go with Limbaugh, then we are guaranteed President Obama another 4 years.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:38 pm |
  21. Rob, San Diego

    Same folks that run the Democratic Party – special interest group lobbyists.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  22. Mageen in Old Virginny

    Rush certainly thinks he's got the buggy whip in his hand. But then his perception of reality has long since been altered and by his own hand. His continued career is a total mystery to folks like myself. He has never had anything that he is really "for", everything is "against". That says it all right there. Tsk, tsk.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  23. M. Gibson

    He may not be running it, but he is the defacto spokesmen for the republican party, anytime you as a leader of a polictical party has to backtrack and then recant the words said about a "radio personality" then it is clear to me that he has at least some maybe even a great deal of power within that party.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  24. Melissa

    No one is running the party. Thats the problem. They're behaving like children. Someone needs to tell Limbaugh to shut his mouth and that he's damaging the party. He's pretty much making sure they have no hope in winning in the next election. And Steele has shown that he doesn't have a backbone.

    Rush isn't running it but he is very successfully destroying it.

    March 3, 2009 at 1:43 pm |
  25. Sue -Idaho

    Jack, looks like Rush is running the show, I laugh everytime one of the GOPERS say something against Rush they run out the next day and apologize. Amazing, a high school grad with a big mouth and bigger ego, get four hundred million to shout hate out and he has a following. Kind of reminds me of Al Queda!

    March 3, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  26. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    That's like asking how many angels can sit on the head of a pin. It's irrelevant. They were pariahs after Bush finished dragging them through the mud. They made themselves even more unpopular hoping the recovery fails and trying to derail it at every opportunity. The GOP is making itself more and more irrelevant everyday.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:07 pm |
  27. Les, College Station Texas

    Does it really make any difference which idiot or group of fools has control over these morons?

    March 3, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  28. Dennis in Grand Rapids, MI

    Simple, apparently it's Rush and all of the other whackjob Neocons...

    March 3, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  29. steve in scappoose or

    Answer: Who knows?

    Question: Who cares?

    March 3, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  30. Mickie

    Absolutely! He gave Steele a dressing down I'm sure. Anybody who is a democrat who was addicted to oxycotin and who knows what else, would be pummeled by the republicans, but they worship at the feet of this imbecile.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:14 pm |
  31. Ron K

    Hi Jack:

    That is too funny. Rush Limbaugh the newest POSTER CHILD for the RNC. Please, tell me there isn't something wrong with this picture.

    Ron San Diego

    March 3, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  32. Roland (St George, UT)

    The problem is that nobody is running the Republican party. The Republicans haven't had any real leadership within their party for years. That is the reason why in 2000 and unscrupulous, dishonest, campaign manager such as Karl Rove was allowed to derail the candidacy of John McCain, and get a complete moron like George W. Bush on the ticket instead. It was nothing short of mass hysteria. And as the great, late, Paul Harvey would say, We all know "the rest of the story..."

    March 3, 2009 at 2:20 pm |
  33. Ed Reed

    Rush is. No coubt about it. If any Republican dares to say differently, he later has to apologize to Der Fuhrer.

    Ed Reed
    Port Aransas, TX

    March 3, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  34. Kirven

    The hate-fill Rush is leading the full of hate GOP because he can speak the language of hate better than anyone. So many of my friends who are moderate Republicans have left the party since Bush and said Rush is keeping them away.

    Kirven Dunham
    Rancho Cordova, CA

    March 3, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  35. Richard in Kansas

    Rush may not be running the party but he is certainly the mouth piece for the party's core- namely the far right. I'll grant you that he is a great speaker, but the lies and vile that comes out of his mouth is disgusting. Is this what the republican party has come too? They reach ever further to the right in spite of the fact that Amercans overwhelmingly want a more centerist government.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  36. Tom Huntington, NY

    Nobody is running the GOP. They are afraid of incurring the wrath of Rush so they kiss up to him. Rush is filling the vacuum for the time being. He won’t run for office because it is easier to sit back and throw stones and he doesn’t want the pay cut. Rush and Steele are acting like the three stooges, with Joe the Plumber as Curley.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:30 pm |
  37. Saad from NJ

    If he is, GOP needs to run..... somewhere far far away.....

    March 3, 2009 at 2:31 pm |
  38. olga

    The democrats are using Rush Limbaugh to force republicans to come out. I think the Republicans have chosen which way they're headed and it's not the moderate avenue. They're taking a hard right. That's good news for democrats because the nation is in the center leaning left.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:32 pm |
  39. Mari Fernandez, Salt Lake City, Utah

    Yes, Jack, Limbaugh is running the Grand Obstructionist Party. The proof is that whenever a Republican politician disagrees with him, Limbaugh-the-comedian drags them through the mud....... until they kiss-up and apologize! The GOP is giving this man an awful lot of power, to their detriment!

    March 3, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  40. Tiffany, Philadelphia, PA

    There is no leader. The Republican Party is obviously imploding on itself.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  41. Tom Walsh

    Rush Limbaugh is laughing all the way to the bank, wallowing in all this bipartisan attention as he watches his army of dittoheads grow day by day. As an Obama supporter, I say "Bring it on, El Rushbo." A 2012 Republican ticket of Limbaugh-Palin will ensure a two-term presidency for the Obama-Biden reform team.

    Tom Walsh
    Gouldsboro, Maine

    March 3, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  42. Edwinjoe from Mary

    Since their primary objective is to win elections, I see Rush Limbaugh as the leader. I am a liberal democrat and have to admit that after watching Rush on CNN last Saturday, I have been listening to his radio show and think he is right about the welfare state arguement, it really kills innovation and hard work.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  43. Naomi

    Running it for sure...right into the ground.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  44. Pugas-AZ

    The only thing Rush runs is his mouth. I think the Republican party should distance themselves from him. He panders to the extreme right wing of the party and that is not going to work towards the party getting back in power. The Republican party needs an enema and Rush should be the first flush.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  45. john ........ marlton, nj

    Rush Limbaugh is to the republican party in the same way Rahm Emanuel is to the democratic party. They both are intellectually challeneged, morally bankrupt and think they are more important than they really are.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:47 pm |

    The only thing Rush Limbaugh is running is his mouth. Not that I blame him. If someone is willing to pay him forty million dollars a year to prattle on, then he would be a fool (an even bigger fool) to do otherwise. The fact that so-called Repubican leaders are afraid to offend him shows how deep in the quicksand the party is.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  47. Terence

    He thinks he is!!!!
    Terence, Piscataway, NJ

    March 3, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  48. Ken in New Philadelphia

    Rush will continue to have a powerful hold on the GOP until our public officials realize they can stand up to him without the need to apologize hours later. Rush is a oppositional talk show host and nothing more. Ignore him, he will go away.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  49. David St. Louis, MO

    Rush is in charge, and has been since 1989. He differentiates himself from RINOs in that he, and the millions of other conservatives, TRUST the American people, while liberals DO NOT put their trust in the people or capitalism, only BIG government.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  50. M Taylor

    Rush Limbaugh is a very scary person and unfortunately, he uses his platform to proliferate his hate mongering.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  51. Mysterious

    This is all so comical. Do you remember "Operation Chaos?" Sounds like Rush's words are coming back to bite himback.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  52. Tina, Tulsa Ok

    Obviously Rush is running the Republican party. Michael Steele is an embarrassing joke.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:57 pm |
  53. Janice, Folsom

    Rush. Absolutely. His leadership is reinforced every time a Republican begs him for forgiveness, kisses the back of his hand and slinks out of the room.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:58 pm |
  54. Vicki

    If anyone is running the RNC, they are probably too embarrassed to admit it.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  55. Ethan of Trenton, NJ

    Rush may not be an administrator, but he does rule the hearts and minds of the far right.

    March 3, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  56. dee from Dallas, Tx

    Do you even have to ask???

    As fast as Michael Steele backed off his comments, I think it's pretty obvious who has more influence and power within the GOP...

    March 3, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  57. Russell (Little Rock, AR)

    Rush Limbaugh reminds me of Lucifer in Milton's 'Paradise Lost' when he said "It is better to rule in Hell than serve in Heaven". The Republicans don't seem eager or able to accept the fact that they have followed a disastrous path for nearly 4 decades. For 8 long years they insisted that we follow GWB because he was the President, and any other path was anti-American, if not downright treasonous. It is a shame that now that change has come, it has also spawned denial, arrogance, self-righteousness, and hypocrisy as the 4 muses that inspire the Republican cause.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:01 pm |
  58. Dan, Chantilly VA

    Neither. The religious right is running the GOP. It's kind of sad because we could use some fiscal conservatism right now, but it seems the Republicans have become the party of paranoia rather than ideas. The amount of hypocrisy coming out of Washington from both sides right now is astonishing. What's scary is that no one seems to care.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:02 pm |
  59. Judy, Exeter, Calif,

    Of course he doesn't want to be in charge of the republican party. He would rather sit on the sidelines and spew ugly rhetoric, and suggest that they are the only ones who know how to run the country. He doesn't hold public office, and therefore will not be held responsible for his remarks. CPAC reminded me of a Klan meeting while he was speaking. Here's a suggestion for you Rush, let the man elected by the people run the country for now, and when and if another republican is elected president it will then be your turn.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  60. ellen rowe

    Rush is running the GOP and the Obama Administration is pulling the strings of this little marionette show.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  61. Dave, Cedar Rapids, IA

    There isn't anyone running the Grand Old Party! The kegs run out and all that's left are the bragadocious drunks promoting their own greatness!

    March 3, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  62. Kim (Canada)

    Limbaugh might not be "officially" in charge Jack, but everyone seems to expend a lot of energy making sure they stay on his good side...

    March 3, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  63. Ricky C Williams

    It scares me as a American that people are feeding into this type of negativity. I think The Rep are in such bad shape that they resort to Fear when their backs are against the wall. They really think America has forgot the last 8 years under Bush...wanting a American President to fail since their plans didn't work is the most Un American thing I can think of and sad that its come to this...

    March 3, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  64. Jean

    I guess it is Rush. But surely the RNC has not dropped their Standards to this man. Rush is their Final Nail in the Coffin. He is coming off as an out of control Loud mouth, that is seeking Attention. If this man continue to speak for the GOP. It will be a Wonderful Thing for the Dems. As for Steele, he has shown the Country that he does not have any Backbone. And he was chosen but does not have any Power. In other words, a Fall Guy.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  65. Philip

    It is clear that Rush Limbaugh is running the show. Which in my opinion is a good thing. He reflects more than anyone else the values and aspirations of the Republican Party.

    It is to his benefit to keep cyniscism alive and well for as long as his readership is high–I think that ies time for the American People to pay attention to his sponsors?

    His goal is to keepthe status of the nation the same–the Rep. have a real problem and they are just beginning to see it. Remeber that Sarah Palin was Rush's idea. But for his brillance, Obama migh not be President.

    Let me "Entertain" you!

    March 3, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  66. Rick from Murfreesboro, TN

    Yes he is running them into the ground. They show how spineless they are by allowing him to dictate their policies. They will never be a national force again unless they dump him, Coulter, O'Reilly, Hannity and the other lunatics and move back into the mainstream of American life.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  67. Obamaniac, West Palm Beach, FL


    Whether the DNC consider Rush Limbaugh is the Boogey Man, the Wizard of Oz; I see him as the enforcer. I know is the guy who knocks on your door at 2 am when you tick off the RNC.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  68. Tina from NC

    Of course it's Rush. When you have Republicans having to apologize for speaking out against him, then it's pretty obvious who's calling the shots. Either way, it's pretty said that all the Republicans have is a radio talk show host who makes millions spewing hate everyday to represent them and their "values".

    March 3, 2009 at 3:19 pm |
  69. Vic

    Limbaugh's views certainly represent a more radical portion of Republicans, but nobody is "running" the Republican Party. There is a complete vacuum of leadership, ideas and direction now. Limbaugh and others are trying to step into this vacuum, but no one is succeeding yet.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  70. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Fear is running the Republican Party, fear of Rush Limbaugh.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  71. Ryan

    Short answer... yes.

    It is quite clear that Rush is holding the leashes of the attack dogs/base of the party.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  72. odessa

    rush limbaugh of course!.what gets me tick is he made michael steele look like a punk and he took the bait..michael steele should have been put him in rush's place and told him off..rush is nothing but a troublemaker who starts nothing but drama and creating chaos for his viewers as well the republicans..michael steele better start using his mouth, stop apologizing and stop being a sissy..michael steele let rush belittle his intelligence and made him weak as a man..rahm was right; rush is running things and the future of the gop(grand obstructionists party) are in serious trouble for getting their crew elected..somebody needs to give rush his medicine now so he can shut up for good.colin powell can shut him up really fast.steele needs to talk right and stop being scared of rush as well the gop.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  73. richard miller

    Of course he runs the party of hate. Just listen to him. He would be the headline speaker at a Klan meeting with no problem!

    March 3, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  74. Bill in Michigan

    Tha fact that Steele, the Chairman of the Republican Party, cannot speak his mind and has to backpedal in fear of Limbaugh's retribution pretty much sums it up. May God have mercy on the souls of the Rebublicans.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  75. Derek


    Rush is about the only conservative that is willing to talk about everything at any time. He is speaking out more than any republican currently and has the guts to say anything. So yes, he is running the GOP and is running it down the drain for every time he opens his mouth.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  76. Wendy Theriault, Nashua, New Hampshire

    What Limbaugh is running is his mouth and I, for one, am sick of it and have been for over a decade. If I wanted to listen to him, I'd tune into his radio show...but I am force fed his hate filled and narrow minded speech no matter _what_ news outlet I watch, listen to or read. will you people (the media) PLEASE stop giving this guy free air time?

    March 3, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  77. dan in Tucson

    Either way Rush is the poster boy for the Republican Party and with that comes the arrogant short-sided opinionated big mouths we have all come to love and admire. As long as he's connected to the Republicans no one will ever take them seriously. Hang in there Rush. Youv've become the Democrats best allie without even realizing it. What a boob.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  78. Peter Wolfe

    For the sake of the nation, lets hope it is Limbaugh. True, he knows about the conservative agenda and the country needs "balance", but Rush is no less a radical than the good reverend from Illinois. The Democratic party needs more of Rush and his wild and crazy rants. I feel for RNC, good luck!

    March 3, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  79. just me!

    Of course this egomaniac is running the RNC or else why is Steele calling him to apologize?? His hate filled anitAmerican speech is disgraceful, unpatriotic. Why does anyone waste time listening to such a hate mongerer??

    March 3, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  80. Scott, Wichita

    Well, for most of us Republicans, Rush Limbaugh is just a funny guy we listen to when we're in a good mood and need a laugh.

    If he wants to be in charge of the GOP, let him run for office. The Democrats have already let a comedian run: Al Franken.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  81. Randall In Richmond, TX

    I'm not a republican, but if I was, its a sad indication where the party is currently. No republican leader can every say anything against Rush or there will be a backlash and then a backpedal. This mirrors the operations of the Bush administration when in high profile positions were asked to step down or lost their job because of their comments against the President.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  82. Tino

    Of course. This is a case of the Brainless running the brainless and he being also clueless gets the vote to run everything.
    Tino, NYC

    March 3, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  83. Casey | Sebastopol, CA

    Rush Limbaugh and Michael Steele are just the forks of the Republican snake's tongue. No one is "running" that party, can't you tell?

    March 3, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  84. Roy

    He is most definitely is the RNC’s leader. Just like George Wallace was Alabama's leader during the Civil Rights struggle

    March 3, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  85. Matt Toohey


    Does it make a difference? Since both parties seem to have forgotten who the "public" really is I think it is time for voters to find someone who truly represents our interests – jobs, health care, affordable housing to name a few.


    March 3, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  86. Jim (San Jose, CA)

    Rush Limbaugh is running the "Wing Nuts" section of the party. There's no leadership for any other section.

    The republicans are in such disarray it's actually amusing to watch. The moderates are labeled traitors by the conservatives and are sanctioned for compromise.

    The social conservatives are all for individual liberty, as long as you do it their way.

    In order for the republican party to regain any sort of relevance, they must come up with a leader who is seen as such by the rest of the fracas. It isn't Boener, it isn't Jindal, it isn't Limbaugh, it isn't McConnell. There isn't a republican out there who gets it. When your views do not coincide with more than 50% of the population, you are irrelevant. The republicans had better get used to it.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  87. Danielle, Dallas, TX

    Rush Limbaugh be the man!!

    March 3, 2009 at 3:46 pm |
  88. tigerakabj

    Come on Jack. This is not a trick question. Michael Steele, the head of the RNC, just backed down to Rush.

    I remember when Obama told the top GOP leadership that, "You can't listen to Rush Limbaugh and get anything done." I knew then that Obama had baited Limbaugh and set the GOP up. It was either follow Limbaugh, or follow Obama and America. With their vote on the stimulus bill, they chose the former.

    Policies aside, I think it looks absolutely terrible, craven, and cowardly to see grown men and women bowing at the alter of Limbaugh, thus abdicating all of their power and decision-making abilities to him.

    With that said, I've got my popcorn and coke, and I am enjoying the show. The party that brought us Bush, and the national and worlwide havoc along with him, deserves nothing less. Goodbye GOP and good riddance. Give the Whigs my regards.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  89. OJ-TX

    Clearly Rush is running the Party based on Steele's apology– And It seems fitting that the DO nothing, No nothing, Offer Nothing, War Mongering, pollution loving, Pro wallstreet party would be ran by ran by this clown. But who is their alternative? Bobby Jindal who clearly can't even read from a teleprompter or Palin who couldn't spell one. Can they please go away so we can fix the country that they did a better job destroying than Bin Laden

    March 3, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  90. J.L.

    The facade of the Republican Party is the RNC. The one pulling the strings of the Republican Party is Rush Limbaugh. When Rush tells conservatives to jump, they ask, "How high?" All you have to do is look at the reactions of Phil Gingrey and Michael Steele. They both said something negative about Rush Limbaugh and soon thereafter had to grovel... I mean... apologize to Limbaugh. What does that say...? A member of Congress and the head of the RNC apologizing to an "entertainer."

    March 3, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  91. A Iqbal

    Considering how quickly Steele turned to Limbaugh with an apology, it seems to me that while Steele may be the head of the GOP, Limbaugh is most certainly the neck that twists that head.

    March 3, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  92. Arvind Jadhav

    Jack, I don't know who is running Republican party. But I sure know that a majority of them want Obama or his policies to fail. That means they want the U.S. to fail economically over the next four years. Is this patriotic? Arvind

    March 3, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  93. ST

    Limbaugh is running that party. If Steele doesn't stand up, the Republicans can forget about 2012. Limbaugh and Coulter are two of the nastiest people I have ever seen. Gee, I wonder why Rush has been divorced 3 times and Coulter has never been married? I know there is a difference between a Reublican and a conservative, but all the public sees is these two as reps for both. The Republicans better get new faces quick if they want more support.

    That being said, it's okay to have certain views, I respect all views. What I don't respect is views fueled by hatred.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:05 pm |
  94. Alex from Long Beach, California


    I do not beleive Rush is running the RNC but he is not helping. All he is doing is damaging their image the same way some of McCain's supporters did during the McCain/ Palin campain. Rush is nothing but a Republican voter who is only hurting himself and his party.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  95. Shawn from Phoenix,Az

    The Republicans will deny Rush is leading them, but they sure are following him around like a puppy follows its' master with a dog treat.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  96. Tim Harris

    Neither is running that sinking ship. They are both on their own lifeboat claiming leadership while the balance of their followers drown in their narrow and often demented views of this country.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  97. david

    In a word YES!! Even the newly elected leader Steele back down to him. So if he's not he act like it.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  98. Sherry

    Rename Michael Steele - Michael Jellyfish. I'm a Republican, Jack. Rush Limbaugh doesn't speak for me or for any other thinking person. What a poor excuse for a human being he is. I can't even tune into his program anymore because he doesn't make sense.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  99. JOHN N.H.

    In a nutshell? YES!

    March 3, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  100. John in San Diego

    Rush is no a leader – he's nothing more than a paid entertainer. Bozo the Clown has a huge audience, too, but that doesn't make him a leader.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  101. Austin

    Rush of course. Republicans are a bunch of morons. It's sad that they will resolve to a drug addict who can not defferentiate between the bill of rights and the constitution for leadership.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  102. Bob in Lincoln NE

    The only thing Limbaugh is running is his mouth. I thought he was off the "happy pills" but based on his diatribe, I must be wrong.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  103. Jeff - Payson Az

    The blind leading the blind.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  104. JohnS

    Both Rush and Steele think the are running it.

    . . .and Cantor thinks he's running it.

    . . .and Gingrich thinks he's running it.

    . . .and McConnell thinks he's running.

    The fact seems to be that NO ONE is running the Republican Party.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  105. Arun

    Rush may have millions of listeners that faithfully follow his words, and most of them are probably republicans. But after all, he is nothing more than a talk show host, albeit a successful and influential one. I believe the leadership of the republican party is very murky. they do not seem to have a firm leader who can represent all sections of the party. this has given the democrats ( and the media) fodder to chew over political gossip when there are more important and serious issues that we are facing as a nation – the economy, jobs, national debt, our troops in limbo about their future, iran etc… and the debate we are having here is about who is the de facto leader of the minority party which almost has no power (in senate, house or WH)…. its totally inconsequential and a non-issue considering the bigger picture. We have more important issues to be focusing upon and debating on and this distraction is shameful!!

    -Arun, San Francisco CA

    March 3, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  106. Alan-Buxton, Maine

    Rush Limbaugh is a bigoted, drug addicted swine. It is quite fitting if he represents the Republicans. They have sunk so low and have drifted so far from reality they quibble among themselves about who is or is not the leader and no one knows. It is difficult to lead when they all are going different directions. They have become totally irrelevant.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  107. Dr. Royal

    Rush Limbaugh is the leader of the GOP! Steele totally wimped out by apologizing to Rush. I was really disappointed!

    March 3, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  108. Deb

    RUSH does NOT want Obama to fail, he wants his AGENDA to fail. Why won't you guys listen to what he's really saying? Drive-by media at its worst. And, it looks like he'll be right because, I believe, the investors on Wall Street don't believe Obama will succeed at this rate.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  109. Harry


    Rush needs to get back to what he does best. Popping pills and putting his foot in his mouth.


    Harry in Concord, CA

    March 3, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  110. Rose Shaker Hts., Ohio

    I prefer to think of him as "Maestro".

    March 3, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  111. DEB

    I hope Rush is. He can run it into the ground further. How they can have any respect for a hate mongerer, drug addict, and criminal is beyond me.

    Steele talks too intelligently to be part of a group that has Rush and Ann as their poster people.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  112. Subbu

    I think Mr. Limbaugh is a great actor. He is not a conservative – he just pretends to be one. You would too, Mr. Cafferty, if the stakes were $200 million!

    March 3, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  113. Chris from Florida

    What a shame...Republicans appear to be excited and willing to follow an obese, hate mongering prescription drug addict named Limbaugh, when they actually had the chance to start looking intelligent by supporting Mr. Steele. how absolutely pathetic...

    March 3, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  114. Lance Thomson, Chapel Hill, NC

    It is obvious that the Republican Party is in disarray. Their previous leader failed them in every way, disgraced the country and his party and they don't know what to do after a complete defeat at the polls. Now their only tactic is to stall and critisize rather than offer alternatives and solutions. Let them fight amoung themselves and continue to become a fringe party with little to offer a county that needs leaders and ideas.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  115. Grant

    I hope it's Limbaugh he knows nothing and with him in charge the republicans will never, ever become a national party again.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  116. Harry Bloomington, IN

    Rush Limbaugh is simply the only media force the Republicans have. He is in no way the leader of the party. Have you seen Mitt Romney or Bobby Jindal? These men are the leaders and they are prime to give Obama a run for his money in 2012. You were right when you said that Democrats want Limbaugh to be the voice of the GOP, but to the rest of us that have half a brain we know Limbaugh does not lead the Republicans.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  117. Curtis Johnson

    It's clear the meat head is running the G Old P.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  118. Casey Clark

    The perception of the Republican Party as a hate-mongering, misanthropic organization is enthusiastically proven by Rush Limbaugh. The reluctance of conservatives to decry such poisonous speeches confirms Rush's place in demagoguery. Just as Islam is colored by the actions of the Taliban and other extremists so to is the Republican Party colored by the words and undeniable leadership of Rush Limbaugh.

    March 3, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  119. kim

    neither. it is a dragon with its head cut off. the only person who knows what is going on in that party in the guy in the basement with the tin foil cap. Listening to Limbaugh is like getting a lot of vomit in your ear and nothing is worse than nasty stinking vomit in your ear.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  120. Chris (Seattle WA)

    He's the perfect Republican leader: he is a bigot that complains about changes and reform, and never has to do anything but complain. He doesn't have to run for re-election, so he can get away with drug addictions and other scandals. He's the perfect Republican leader.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  121. Donald in CA

    Everyone knows that Rush runs the republican party. No one in that party will say anything negative about Rush with out crawling back on their knees asking for forgiveness. Also, Michael Steele is finding out
    fast why there are no black congressmen or senators in the republican party. And only a couple of black voters. He will have no power in that party. He should have talked to J.C. Watts before accepting that position..

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  122. gabriele

    Let me get this straight, the head of the RNC apologized to Limbaugh, a man that spews venom. Hmm, you tell me who's in charge

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  123. TJ

    No one is running the republican party. It is in a shambles. They did not act like conservatives when they had the power, and they are paying for it. The party has no strong or reasonable voice. The lack of a true leader has allowed a bloviating radio talk show host to assume the mantle of conservativism. The rest of the party has few if any new ideas. The party has always played to conservatives, but it has never formulated or instituted a plan to drive the country in a conservative direction. Rush's view of a conservative platform is the only one being talked about. The American people for the most part want nothing to do with the Limbaugh brand of conservativism. The party is between a rock and hard place because they want to placate conservatives like Limbaugh but do not want to irritate the majority of voters.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  124. Kathy

    God, I hope not.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  125. Linda

    I clicked on this link after misreading the title as "Is Rush Limbaugh Ruining the GOP?" The answer to that is 'Yes'. Way to go, Rush!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  126. Kap, Chicago, IL CD-05

    Rahm is right. McCain's VP choice had to be Palin to "energize the base" because Limbaugh had relentlessly discredited him. Staging is everything; he was prima donna at CPAC and is now priceless to the democrats.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  127. Doug Roberts, Thunder Bay, Ontario

    It certainly seems like Rush Limbaugh is, if not in charge, at least influencing the direction of the Republican Party; quite a leap for a talk radio host. Of course this further reduces the party to a southern, ultra-conservative, fundamentalist group of rednecks. The Democrats must be feeling pretty good about this.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  128. B. Thomas Cooper

    It may not be pretty, but it is pretty obvious.

    Rush Limbaugh speaks for the GOP, a party without conscience or direction. A collective voice which has expressed a desire to see the government fail in it's obligation to act upon the will of the people. This is the message the GOP has chosen to represent the party going into the next decade.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  129. Kirby Cannon

    Who cares.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  130. James Lawson

    I dont know, but Ron Paul should be...

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  131. Nancy

    The media is running the Republican Party; hopefully, into the ground

    Nancy, Ellicott City, Maryland

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  132. Chris

    Jack: I don't accept your question. Isn't it pretty clear that the Republican party is completely devoid of leadership?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  133. Ron A.

    The party of No, the party of more money for the rich; The party of anti-middle class lobbyists; is so fractured today that the only entity that they all listen to is Mr. hate himself (Rush Limbaugh). He certainly has the ability to withdraw apologies on a daily basis from those who fail to give us ideas on how to help the economic situation. If it were even xmass in april, then this is the present i would want........>utter chaos in the ranks and files of this party of hatred. And Rush is surely their soul leader.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  134. Art in Virginia

    Nobody is running the Republican Party. With control of most of the wealth in the country, they can't figure out why they lost the election, and are at a loss as to what to do about it. It appears as though they believe that if they keep beating the Democrats with a big stick, they'll go away. Five percent of the people should have most of the money. Duh.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  135. B. Thomas Cooper

    It may not be pretty, but it is pretty obvious.

    Rush Limbaugh speaks for the GOP, a party without conscience or direction. A collective voice which has expressed a desire to see the government fail in it’s obligation to act upon the will of the people. Such is the message the GOP has chosen to represent the party going into the next decade.

    B. Thomas Cooper
    Phoenix, Arizona

    March 3, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  136. Clay St. John

    As a Democrat, with all my heart, I hope and pray that he is!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  137. Maryann Rose


    He's not really running the party, but the party knows he has a lot of listeners and influence over them.

    Those listeners translate into votes, and that's why the GOP is 'scared' of Limbaugh. They're really not scared of him personally, just the power he wields over the airwaves.

    For the life of me though, I cannot understand how so many people find this man 'entertaining'.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  138. Joe

    Rush has been running the republican party since at least 1990. News? Not if you know any republicans. They all tune in like little kids. "What did Rush say?" That's how they vote and think. It's sad but true.

    Kansas City, Mo.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  139. Gregory T.

    Steele looks real bad after this: stupid for picking a fight against someone who should be his ally, and weak for loosing that fight. Still, his comments were accurate. Limbaugh proved how ugly he can be by attacking Steele.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  140. Mark L

    There should be no doubt, its Rushbo the clown!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  141. Morley Young


    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  142. David in St Louis

    Of course Limbaugh runs the Republican party. Did you really think they'd have a Black Man run it?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  143. Jana

    Rush Limbaugh is an insult to America.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  144. Vern

    I hope he is. the kooky right like Rushbo, Bobby J, Boehner, Cantor, and Palin are doing a better job of purging moderate Republicans in the name of purifying the party than the Democrats could ever hope for.


    March 3, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  145. Bob in Florida

    I certainly HOPE it is Rush Limbaugh. Nothing could do MORE to marginalize the REPIG party than having Rush Limbaugh as it's so-called leader,

    I love the CPAC meeting that featured Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and a thirteen year old kid. As Jon Stewart put it, "Two and a half men!" Personally, I do not think Rush counts as a whole man, more like the Pilsbury dough boy left out of the refrigerator YEARS too long!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  146. pat angelo

    I have voted Republican since I was 21. I am now 65. If Rush is the face of the Republican party. I will never vote Republican again!!!
    I want nothing to do with Rush, THAT OLD BLOWHARD!!!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  147. N. W. Smith

    The RNC is an utter shambles and completely out of touch with reality. Rush MUST be in charge.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  148. Norman Hoffman


    We shouldn't be too hard on Rush. He just needs to relax. Maybe he should take a few days off and go quail hunting with Dick Cheney.

    Marietta, Ga

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  149. Rudy Reeves

    Rush Limbaugh's virtually unbuffered influence over the Republican Party is both dangerous and frightening. His listeners have given him the power of unofficially running the GOP. I hope that the legitimate Republican legislators that have actually been elected into office can make sure that Mr. Limbaugh remains nothing more than an entertainer.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  150. GM in California

    RNC = Rush's National Committee. Does that answer the question?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  151. ali

    In two words Jack!
    Yes, Rush Limbaugh is running GOP.
    What do we respect from Gop?
    Rush Limbaugh!
    2012 Rush Limbaugh is going to be running for President race.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  152. James G. Fabiano

    He is a clown. As soon as the Republican Party finds someone to trust good ole Rush will once again fall behind his microphone with everyone cheering, "here comes the clown".

    March 3, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  153. dave

    That's the problem Jack. No one is running it! Everyone who is qualified is running from the last 8 years. Rush is the only voice of reason for conservatives who think obamas socialist ideas and spending billions of other peoples money is not the answer.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  154. America?

    Limbough is the micro Wizard of Oz, except drugged out and playing the greatest puppeteer of all time. It's really a shame that he, like Octomom, require the same amount of negative attn and don't give a flying damn about the casualties. Maybe he and OctoMom will start a new cult!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  155. Djones from Maryland

    Good Day Jack

    There is no doubt about it Rush is the King of the Republican party; Steele has now appointed himself as the village idiot with his apology and the rest of the party are Mr Limbaugh's peasants. LONG LIVE THE KING!!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  156. Lane

    Of course not. If Limbaugh were in charge of the GOP McCain would have never been nominated.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  157. David Oswald

    Of course Rush Limbaugh is running the GOP. He has been for years. The evidence is with all of the apologies to an entertainment commentator who has nothing but bombastic statements which cost him nothing politically. Rush dances his way to the bank everyday while his flock waits patiently for their cue to poke their heads out of the sand.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  158. mike in Ny

    Only in this country can you go from a drug abuser to the head of a party that supports family values. Did rush think his drug money was supporting American families.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  159. Ed, Palm Harbor FL

    Republicans really don't know who is running the party. They are still trying to figure out who has been running the country for the last 8 years.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  160. Jakob

    The Republican party is over! From the Bush dynasty to Rush Limbaugh!? And who are the alternatives? Ann Coulter, James Dobson, Palin or Huckabee?

    Finally, the conservative loony base has finally derailed the party and put us back on track as a democratic nation with liberty and justice FOR ALL!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  161. Garland in Atlanta

    Of course he is in charge of GOP. Why else would the head of the RNC apologize. Michael Steele tries to to talk so tough but in reality, he fears Rush and fully understands how important that drug addict is to the Republican party.


    March 3, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  162. G

    Does Rush run the GOP? No...but because no ELECTED Republican has the guts to say what Rush says, Rush is getting all of the publicity. If Rush is such a vile human being and all of his rants are unfounded lies...why is the most powerful man in the country, the President, addressing Rush publicly?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  163. Walter

    It amazes me this man has raised to this much prominence by simply running his mouth. What qualifies him to be a Conservative Guru? The man failed in college, literally. He has no proof of true intellect. He talks in gliterring generalities and never provides solutions. He only perpetuates the polarization that has killed our country in the past 8 years. Rush Limbaugh is nothing more than the last hope for a dying breed of 20th century Republicanism.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  164. Virginia Hawes

    He sure is.....right into the ground. Every time he does another scrwy rant, it's more people voting Democrat. He's the best vote getter the Democrats ever had.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  165. Rudolph Koser

    He may not be running the party, but he tends, because of his show, to speak de facto for the party. I believe he only represents a crazy fringe, but middle of the road Republicans better speak up and challenge him or the party will be in the desert for the forseeable future. Steele made a big mistake in backing down.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  166. Brian McCarthy

    No, he is not running the GOP. He is a strategic hired gun and talking head to launch empty words to the millions of lost souls who listen to him. Better yet, the lost souls you believe him.

    No, Rush is not running the GOP. He is as valid as Ann Coulter to the GOP.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  167. Punky Lumpkin

    Regarding who runs the Republican Party? Who gives a damn?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  168. gene duncan

    I believe Mr. Olberman is correct Rush Limbaugh is a comedian, and no I will not apoligize.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  169. D J Schaeffer

    Don't know if Limbaugh is running the Republican party...he is at least speaking for a number of people who are tired of seeing Pelosi, Dodd, Reid, Frank,and other assorted rumdums that are running the Democratic party into the ground and destroying this nation in the process.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  170. Yasmin Laupus

    What is happening to the GOP ? How can it be possible that a mad dog like Rush be the leader and spokesperson of an opposition party? It is incredulous and beyond stupidity. Joe the Plumber, Sarah Palin and now Rush.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  171. W.Doute

    Steele was right, he is just an entertainer.Moreover,Emanuel is right as well,he is the head of the Republican Party,and personally I'm glad. Everytime Limbaugh opens his mouth,this idiot damages the Party .I don't listen to his radio show,because it's bad enough to have to see him on the news every evening.Did he ever do time for all those drugs he did'nt have a prescription for?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:25 pm |

    The republican party is a big mess and they need a big mess to run it. So, Rush if the shoe fits, wear it.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  173. Frayie, Oklahoma City

    Sir, Nobody is running the GOP. Can you say runaway train?

    March 3, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  174. Osh from CA

    We all can have a good laugh imagining how embarrasing Rush can be for the GOP. However that laughter will be quickly replaced with the shock as we learn that his antics are the exact thoughts that most GOP's have. He'll probably be telling us that the growing number of unemployed, uneducated and no-health care Americans to "let them eat cake".

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  175. Zac

    God I hope not. Conservofacists like Rush are why America is in the hole it is.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  176. Samuel

    Yes, because the elected officials in the Republican party are cowards. They cannot make a decision unless Rush says so like 'Simon Says'.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  177. MPS

    No doubt about it – Limbaugh is the leader of right-wing, empty-headed sheep who are under the impression that a hive mind is requisite to run any form of successful government.

    The intersection that we're seeing is that the right-wing constituency is HEARING Limbaugh and is, unfortunately BELIEVING the adjenda that he pushes. They then push on their elected GOP leadership who, being politicians, want to keep their jobs. So they bow to the cries of the masses.

    Is Limbaugh in control? Ultimately yes. And it's a filthy business.

    Whoever said that religion is the opiate of the masses never heard conservative group-think radio.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  178. Charles F.

    No big deal. George Soros is running the Democratic party.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  179. Alex Olama

    Jack, why would so many people backtrack and apologize to that man if he did not have too much clout. I think Mr. Steele has made a mockery of himself by apologizing to Limbaugh. That is not the way to attract more people to that party. Rush is ugly as Mr. Steele said.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  180. M. E. Berry

    Rush is definitely the leader, I watched him whoop and hollow yesterday like an old pentecostal preacher. The first thing I thought is that he must be back on his drug of choice. The wort thing about the whole issue is that the republicans thing that they are being smart by allowing him to speak for them, but they dont realize that this is going to cause future problems with the party. Michael Steele may as well go home and stay he has lost his credibility. After what he said on DL's show and then come back and apologize to Rush. He is finished.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  181. Mike

    I can't support the far right, but in the interest of having a variety of views on the table at each election, it seems they are shooting themselves in the foot.

    It seems they would rather have 20% of the voters that are "pure" conservation views than 50.1% of the voters that encompass more moderation/progressive views.


    March 3, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  182. Alberto (Houston)

    Republican leaders???? What leaders???
    He is running the party because no other Republican has the spine and/or guts to confront him.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  183. J. R. Decatur, AL

    Oh, Jack - Let it be Rush - Please, please, let it be Rush

    March 3, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  184. Magoo

    The wealthiest one or two percent of the US population is running the party.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  185. Tony in LA

    While millions of Americans are suffering, narcissistic Republicans are busy staring in the mirror trying to figure out who they are. Rush Limbaugh seems to be the only person willing to truly say what he sees in the reflection. So the crown goes to Rush, but don't expect him to lead the party anywhere but straight into the ground, maybe then the GOP can pick up the pieces and start living in reality.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  186. Erik from Golden, Colorado

    Rush is running the GOP. He's running it straight into the ground. Instead of trying to embrace the moderate conservatives, Limbaugh is alienating them and rabble rousing... and the RNC is letting him. If he continues, he'll single-handedly create a third party by splintering the GOP.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  187. Katherine

    Speaking as a former Eisenhower Republican, I haven't the foggiest idea. I don't recognize anything 'Republican' anymore and, after decades of Republican dominance in Congress, today's Republican temper tantrums strike me as disingenuous at best.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  188. AggyPryd

    Show some backbone, Michael Steele!!! Don't be the foot-shufflin' negro that we already believe you to be!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  189. Orlando

    If talking have anything to do with leadership then Rush Limbaugh is the leader, however he is just like the rest of the Republicans, all talk and no action. Again if it walk like a Duck and quack like a Duck, well you know the rest.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  190. Philip Precht

    Nothing pleases me more than to see Rush Limbaugh ranting and seething. It just proves that the extreme right is frustrated at being responsible for this country's worst financial nightmare in the last 70+ years. They had control for over 8 years, and look where we are. Rush is only seeing a mirror held up for him to see the failures of the Republican party, and cannot come up with anything positive. Rush only has destructive and negative comments at his disposal, but they should be directed at the Republican party, as they are the group who let this country down. I just love seeing Rush implode – it's so gratifying. It's been a long time coming......

    Phil in Dallas

    March 3, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  191. EJ

    I think RNC now means Rush's Nutty Company or Republican Nasty Core. He combines the propaganda skills of Goebbels with the egotism and appearance of Goering.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  192. mike - NJ

    Well lets think here Jack. Its either Rush or the 10 y/o boy. Personally, I would prefer the boy over this drug addict!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:46 pm |
  193. Patricio

    Lets only hope he is!!! Rahm Emanuel has it right!!! Rush's tremendous intellect and his driving force is what we need!!!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:46 pm |
  194. mary,florida

    Rush,Coulter,Palin without them the democrats would still be a minority.God bless all three.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:47 pm |
  195. rick

    Who cares, we should be more concerned with who is running this
    country than who is running a party. From were I stand nobody is running anything , The only thing running is the money out of this country and a president and politicians running this country in the ground

    March 3, 2009 at 5:47 pm |
  196. FRANK

    this arrogant cigar smoking drug abuser in charge!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  197. Jesse

    Quick subtle apology from Mr, Steele confirms Mr, Limbaugh leadedship, Nobody wants to upset a strong leader.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  198. Miss Emma

    LOL! I love when the republican party make a fool of themselves. First, it was Gov Palin, then "Joe the plumber", "Rush the Obama hater" now, "Steele the whatever."

    March 3, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  199. Joe Campbell (New York, NY)

    Rush Limbaugh is more of the Republican mascot than the leader. He’s an old rich overweight hypocritical white man that’s afraid of change and has little or no compassion for the the less fortunate. If that doesn’t sum up the Republican party then I don’t know what does. They may as well replace the elephant with his picture. All they need to do is remove the trunk and make the ears smaller.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  200. gabe

    What a bunch of hand-wringing over a radio host. No wonder you Libs want to bring back the fairness (muzzel the right) doctrine.... You won go back to celebrating with your stimulus checks and entitlement programs, pork for everyone !!!!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  201. Bernie68

    Limbaugh is running the Repus and has been since the Bush one years. Everyone knows it.

    March 3, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  202. Stanton Allaben

    No one is running the Republican party...it's in a shambles!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  203. William Douthit

    The party of Lincoln now the party of Limbaugh?? Say it ain't so Abe, say it ain't so!!!!!!!!

    March 3, 2009 at 5:55 pm |