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NY Times:
Obama Calls Law Student Smeared by Limbaugh

The president thanked Sandra Fluke for her support after she was subjected to a blistering attack over birth control.

Rush Limbaugh's comments are reprehensible. He should apologize.
@ScottBrownMA via web

WaPo editorial:

The GOP can no longer avoid its Rush Limbaugh problem.

While Republican leaders owe no apology for Mr. Limbaugh’s comments, they do have a responsibility to repudiate them — and him.

Kathleen Parker:
Who’d have thought that Rush Limbaugh would become the great uniter in this divisive political season?

Indeed, he has united decent people of all stripes and persuasions with his vile remarks about a Georgetown law student.

Dana Milbank:
When will Republicans stop their vagina monologue?

March is federally recognized as Women’s History Month, and Republicans have been celebrating the occasion in a most unusual style: with a burst of interest in women’s private parts.

Chris Cillizza:
Is Rush Limbaugh hurting Republicans?

Republican politicians have a very different mission than Limbaugh. Not only do they have to win over the sort of conservative voters that make up most of Limbaugh’s audience but they also have to try to reach out to the ideological middle.

Most of the time, those two differing goals run in parallel. Limbaugh has a massive audience and usually he is saying things and advocating positions that most Republican politicians have no problem willingly associating themselves with.

But there are those moments — and the Fluke back and forth is clearly one — where what’s good for Limbaugh and what’s good for the Republican party are very different things.

Three from Politico's Arena:

Trey Hardin Senior VP at VOX Global; Republican strategist and former aide to House Leadership :

One thing we have learned from the worlds of social media, the 24 hour news cycle, and dial testing is that words do matter. Does Rush Limbaugh owe this young lady an apology? Absolutely. Frankly it is borderline slander but we have come to expect nothing less from Mr. Limbaugh.

Also, Rush can't have it both ways. He can't condemn liberals (though it was certainly justifiable to do so) for cheering the death of Andrew Breitbart but then turn around and tag a woman with a label universally recognized as the most demeaning for the female sex.

Less important, but still troubling, is that Limbaugh clearly doesn't recognize how his word choice will hurt the political party he is promoting. Even Limbaugh must know that women are now the most influential voting bloc in the electoral process and many of them are undecided in this year's general election. His word choice does not help, and in fact hurts, the GOP's efforts to reach those voters. I recognize he has an audience to cater to and he is trying to make money but will someone close to him please tell him to shut up! He is not helping.

Brendan Daly Ogilvy Washington; former Pelosi communications director :
Of course he should apologize, but of course, he won't. His comments were so out of bounds - and Republicans' refusal to repudiate them - just further drive a wedge between the GOP and women voters.
Greg Dworkin Contributing Editor, Daily Kos  (that's me):
Given the popularity of Rush Limbaugh's show with conservatives and the crude and crass remarks he made on the air, as well as the allegiance that Republican office holders pay to him, he should not only apologize but the calls for an apology should be led by Republicans.

The fact that they would give him a pass and that Limbaugh feels no need for an apology tells you everything you need to know about the modern Republican Party and the modern conservative movement. The word "cowardly" comes to mind, and I'm with David Brooks on this. He called them "possum Republicans"... duck and cover and hope it all goes away rather than confront the wingnuts (just yesterday Joe Arpaio gave a news conference about the president's birth certificate... come on, folks, this is 2012.)

Well it won't go away until enough Republicans have the guts to stand up and challenge the radio blowhard, the birthers and the other core Republican crazies in their own party. In the meantime, expect both women and men to reject Limbaugh's line of discussion and withhold their vote for Republicans in the fall.

Any and every Republican who refuses to denounce this bullshit fairly deserves the term "coward" attached to them. Only a handful have done so.

Sometimes Rush helps conservatives win debates. Sometimes he helps us lose them. Guess which one this is?
@DanFosterNRO via TweetDeck
HuffPost:
House Democrats have raised more than $1.1 million and collected almost 500,000 signatures with their "war on women" campaign, in just over a week. Now Senate Democrats want a piece of the action.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee launched an online petition on Thursday to rally supporters to denounce conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh for his attacks on Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown law student at the center of the contraception debate raging on Capitol Hill. Limbaugh called Fluke "a slut" and "a prostitute" for testifying before Congress in support of employers providing coverage for birth control. On Friday, he demanded that Fluke release tapes of her having sex in exchange for the contraception that she argued should be covered by employers.

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