Rush Limbaugh’s radio program lost some sponsors this week after Limbaugh threw some insults at a college student, calling her a “slut” and a “prostitute” for her remarks made during an unofficial hearing on contraception.
That same student, Sandra Fluke, also received a phone call from President Obama, who thanked her for speaking out on the issue and to “express concern for me,” Fluke said, according to the Associated Press.
The AP reported that Quicken Loans, LegalZoom, and two bedding companies, Sleep Train and Sleep Number have pulled their ads from Limbaugh’s show.
The White House responded by calling his remarks “reprehensible.”
“The fact that our political discourse has become debased in many ways is bad enough,” said White House spokesman Jay Carney. “It is worse when it’s directed at a private citizen who was simply expressing her views.”
If the “slut” and “prostitute” comments weren’t bad enough, the talk show host also suggested that if Americans have to pay for contraceptives then women should post videos online for everyone to see.
“So Miss Fluke and the rest of you feminazis, here’s the deal,” Limbaugh said. “If we are going to pay for your contraceptives and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch.”
The firestorm started after Fluke had tried to testify at the official Republican-run Congressional hearing on the contraceptive mandate in the nation’s healthcare law. Republicans said that her name was submitted too late, but Democrats like House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) questioned that explanation, which led to the unofficial hearing.
During the hearing Fluke told the story of a friend who had to have her ovary removed because her insurance company wouldn’t cover the prescription birth control she needed to stop the growth of ovarian cysts.
“We don’t condone negative comments directed toward any group,” Sleep Train tweeted. “In response, we are currently pulling our ads from Rush with Rush Limbaugh.”
A spokeswoman for Select Comfort, which advertises its Sleep Number bed released a statement to MSNBC saying: “Due to recent commentary by Rush Limbaugh that does not align with our values, we’ve made the decision to immediately suspend all advertising on that program.”
We don’t condone negative comments directed toward any group. In response, we are currently pulling our ads from Rushwith Rush Limbaugh.
— Sleep Train Mattress (@theSleepTrain) March 2, 2012
Due to continued inflammatory comments– along w/valuable feedback from clients & team members– QL has suspended ads on Rush Limbaugh program
Recent comments by Rush Limbaugh do not align w/our values, so we made decision to immediately suspend all advertising on that program.
— Sleep Number Sara (@SleepNumberSara) March 2, 2012
-With Associated Press