After Time magazine announced that Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown Law student who advocated for reproductive health coverage, would be one of 40 candidates for its "Person of the Year" award, the right-wing media reacted with vicious attacks on Fluke. The right-wing media have consistently attacked Fluke since Rush Limbaugh responded to her congressional testimony earlier in the year by calling her a "slut" and a "prostitute."
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Time Nominates Sandra Fluke For "Person Of The Year" Award
Time Magazine Announces Fluke As A Candidate For "Person Of The Year." Time magazine announced on November 26 that Fluke is a candidate for its "Person of the Year" for 2012, citing her advocacy for women's rights, her "poise and maturity" in dealing with attacks from the right-wing media, and her influence on promoting reproductive rights as a key issue in the presidential campaign:
The daughter of a conservative Christian pastor, Sandra Fluke, 31, became a women's-rights activist in college and continued her advocacy as a law student at Georgetown. After she complained about being denied a chance to testify at a Republican-run House hearing on insurance coverage for birth control, Rush Limbaugh called Fluke a "slut." Democrats and many Republicans reacted with outrage, and the left made Limbaugh's slur Exhibit A in what they called a GOP "war on women." Fluke, meanwhile, weathered the attention with poise and maturity and emerged as a political celebrity. Democrats gave her a national-convention speaking slot as part of their push to make reproductive rights a central issue in the 2012 presidential campaign -- one that helped Barack Obama trounce Mitt Romney among single women on Election Day. [Time, 11/26/12]
Right-Wing Media Reacts By Launching Vicious Attacks Against Fluke
On Fox, Larson Calls Fluke "A Poster Child For The Santa Claus Presidency And The Food Stamp President." On the November 27 edition of Fox News' America Live, conservative radio host Lars Larson compared Fluke to President John Kennedy, a previous Person of the Year recipient, saying that Kennedy "said, 'Ask not what your country can do for you,' and now we've got Sandra Fluke saying, 'My country can buy me birth control for three years of law school at Georgetown.' " Larson went on to describe Fluke as "a poster child for the Santa Claus presidency of Barack Obama, the food stamp presidency of Barack Obama." [Fox News, America Live, 11/27/12]
Hoft: Fluke's Nomination "Will Put Her Up There With Adolf Hitler And Yasser Arafat." In a post on his blog Gateway Pundit, Jim Hoft wrote that Time "nominated Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown law student who demanded you pay for her $10 a month birth control pills, as person of the year." Hoft wrote that the nomination "will put her up there with Adolf Hitler and Yasser Arafat." [Gateway Pundit, 11/26/12]
Breitbart.com's Shapiro: Fluke Is A "Condom Rights Advocate Turned Georgetown Law School Martyr." On Breitbart.com's Big Journalism, Ben Shapiro wrote: "Just when you think Time magazine can't make any more of a mockery of itself, they nominate Sandra Fluke, contraception advocate extraordinaire, as a candidate in their Person of the Year 2012 poll." Shapiro further claimed:
Fluke, of course, is the condom rights advocate turned Georgetown Law School martyr who testified before Congress about the hardships encountered by young female law school students who couldn't afford to pay for their own birth control pills. Rush Limbaugh ripped her, prompting faux outcry from the left, all the way up to President Obama, who seized on the incident as proof that the right was waging some sort of war on women, as opposed to a battle against pathetic dependency on government. Obama called her personally, then used her as a campaign surrogate.
Leave it to Time to make her its Person of the Year. Of course, in the year of the dependent American voter, they might be right. [Big Journalism, 11/26/12]
Daily Caller: "Please Make Sandra Fluke Time's Person Of The Year So We Can All Finally Stop Paying Attention To That." The Daily Caller reacted to Fluke's nomination by saying she was the "silliest, most solipsistic candidate they could've possibly picked. You were right. Until now." The post went on to claim Fluke's "accomplishments" were "She demanded free stuff," "Rush Limbaugh called her a rude name" and "Obama called to make sure she was okay." [Daily Caller, 11/27/12]
Limbaugh Kicked Off The Right-Wing Attacks On Fluke, Calling Her A "Slut" And "Prostitute"
Rush Limbaugh: Fluke Says "She Must Be Paid To Have Sex," So She's A "Slut ... A Prostitute." On his radio show, Rush Limbaugh said: "What does it say about the college coed Susan [sic] Fluke who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex. What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex." He continued: "She's having so much sex, she can't afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We're the pimps." He added: "OK, so, she's not a slut; she's round-heeled. I take it back." [Premiere Radio Networks, The Rush Limbaugh Show, 2/29/12, via Media Matters]
Limbaugh: "Can You Imagine If You're Her Parents"? Fluke Testified "She's Having So Much Sex She Can't Afford Her Own Birth Control Pills." Also on the February 29 show, Limbaugh said: "Can you imagine if you're her parents how proud of Sandra Fluke you would be? Your daughter goes up to a congressional hearing conducted by the Botox-filled Nancy Pelosi and testifies she's having so much sex she can't afford her own birth control pills and she agrees that Obama should provide them, or the Pope." [Premiere Radio Networks, The Rush Limbaugh Show, 2/29/12, via RushLimbaugh.com]
Limbaugh: Fluke "Wants Us To Buy Her Sex. She Wants Us To Pay For Her Sex, And She Went To A Congressional Committee To Close The Sale." Limbaugh also said on the March 1 broadcast: " 'Without insurance coverage, contraception, as you know, can cost a woman over $3,000 during law school.' That's a thousand dollars a year for sex that she wants us to pay for it. Now, what does that make her? She wants us to buy her sex. She wants us to pay for her sex, and she went to a congressional committee to close the sale." [Premiere Radio Networks, The Rush Limbaugh Show, 3/1/12, via Media Matters]
Right-Wing Media Followed Limbaugh, Attacking Fluke For Months
Dana Loesch: Fluke's Testimony Was "A 30 Year-Old Woman Embarrassing Herself Before Congress." On Breitbart.com, conservative blogger Dana Loesch described Fluke as "a 30 year-old woman embarrassing herself before congress by testifying that she simply cannot stop getting it on and her inability to control her urges constitutes infringing upon everyone else for a bailout." [Big Journalism, 3/2/12]
Fox's Krauthammer: Fluke's Advocacy For Contraception Coverage Is The "Personification" Of "Entitlement." On the September 18 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier, Fox News contributor Charles Krauthammer cited Fluke while discussing people who "believe in entitlement" and "believe in victimization." Krauthammer called Fluke the "personification" of those beliefs. [Fox News, Special Report, 9/18/12, via Media Matters]
Erick Erickson: Fluke Wants American Taxpayers To "Pay For Her Birth Control Pills So She Can Have Sex." CNN contributor Erick Erickson wrote on his blog RedState that Fluke "spends over $50,000.00 on law school per year" and "really believes that American tax payers should, because of her expensive law school, pay for her birth control pills so she can have sex." [RedState, 3/2/12]
Coulter: Sandra Fluke Introduced Obama To Help With "The Base Democratic Voter -- Stupid Single Women." On Fox News' Hannity, Ann Coulter claimed Fluke was part of the Obama campaign because he "is so desperate just to get the base Democratic voter -- stupid single women." [Fox News, Hannity, 8/9/12, via Media Matters]
Fox's Greg Gutfeld: Sandra Fluke Is "The Poster Child For Whiny Entitlement." On the June 15 edition of Fox News' The Five, co-host Greg Gutfeld claimed "the fictitious woman who is dependent on government is actually Sandra Fluke." Gutfeld went on to call Fluke "the poster child for whiny entitlement." [Fox News, The Five, 6/15/12, via Media Matters]
Fox's Tantaros On Sandra Fluke: "No Woman Should Aspire To Be Her." On the August 23 edition of The Five, co-host Andrea Tantaros asked "who is Sandra Fluke, by the way? Why would they elevate somebody who claims to be this successful woman -- no woman should aspire to be her." [Fox News, The Five, 8/23/12, via Media Matters]