After more than five weeks of comments by radio host Rush Limbaugh condoning and trivializing the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. military guards at Abu Ghraib prison, Tim Russert -- managing editor and moderator of NBC's Meet the Press -- said it was "an honor" to be a guest on Limbaugh's June 10 show. Following a discussion of Russert's new book, Big Russ & Me: Father and Son -- Lessons of Life, Limbaugh asked whom Russert would choose to succeed him as moderator of Meet the Press. Russert replied, "Should I nominate you?" Limbaugh concluded the interview by saying, "I always enjoy talking to you, and I appreciate our relationship over the years."
From the June 10 broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show:
LIMBAUGH: [W]e don't often have guests on this program, but we made an exception, here, for our friend, Tim Russert of NBC News and we -- Tim? How are you, first off. Nice to have you with us. It's a real pleasure.
RUSSERT: It's an honor to be here, Rush. Thank you very much.
LIMBAUGH: When you get to your rank, succession become[s] something that's often discussed. You will eventually become president of the news division of NBC. Who will you hire to replace you as the moderator at N -- at Meet the Press?
RUSSERT: ...I -- if I got hit by a truck tomorrow, I -- who -- who would take -- who should take over? That's a good question. What do you think, Rush?
LIMBAUGH: [laughs] I haven't thought about it. In all candor. That's why I asked you. You are such a fixture. I don't see anybody else in that chair.
RUSSERT: Well, thanks, I -- I mean, I --
LIMBAUGH: I -- I actually don't --
RUSSERT: -- should I nominate you?
LIMBAUGH: Look, Tim, I appreciate [laughter] -- that would fly. That -- you ought to try it, Tim, see how long those 12 years last you at NBC. [laughter] Anyway, this has been fun. I always enjoy talking to you, and I appreciate our relationship over the years.
In addition to reporting Limbaugh's highly controversial statements regarding the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, Media Matters for America has also documented numerous distortions and misrepresentations by Limbaugh: