UPDATED: Limbaugh Reportedly Loses Another Station Over Sandra Fluke Smears
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Since Rush Limbaugh began his misogynistic attacks on Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke, several companies have announced that they have pulled advertising from his program -- a flow that has not ceased since his supposed "apology" on Saturday.
Now Limbaugh appears to have lost his first radio station over those smears, with the Hilo, Hawaii-based KPUA AM 670 announcing that it will no longer air his show. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported that Chris Leonard, president and general manager of New West Broadcasting Corp., released the following statement on Monday:
"We have always encouraged spirited discussion about national and local issues on KPUA and from time to time those discussions may be deemed by some to be objectionable. We are strong believers in the first amendment and have recognized Mr. Limbaugh's right to express opinions that often times differ from our own, but
it has never been our goal to allow our station to be used for personal attacks and intolerance. The most recent incident has crossed a line of decency and a standard that we expect of programming on KPUA whether it is locally produced or a syndicated program like the Rush Limbaugh show.
While much of the national debate regarding this issue is now being framed in political terms, the decision for us is one of decency and responsibility. Regardless of one's political views on the issue being discussed, we feel the delivery was degrading and the continued comments over several days to be egregious. As a result, we are discontinuing the Rush Limbaugh program on KPUA effective immediately."
Another radio station, Pittsfield, Massachusetts-based WBEC, has reportedly dropped Limbaugh's show after his misogynistic attacks on Fluke. According to New England Public Radio:
A commercial radio station in Pittsfield, Massachusetts -- 96.9 FM, WBEC -- says it is dropping the Rush Limbaugh show in the wake of Limbaugh's comments on contraception last week.
Limbaugh called a Georgetown University Law student a "slut" and a "prostitute" after she testified before Congress about women's limited access to contraception. Since then, eight corporations including AOL, Quicken Loans and Carbonite have pulled their advertising from the show. WBEC's General Manager Peter Barry says his station hadn't yet lost any advertisers as a result of Rush's comments, and no more than a handful of callers had voiced complaints. But he says over the years he and station staff have grown increasingly uncomfortable with Limbaugh's rhetoric.
"The nature of Rush's programming has always presented challenges for us and he's always pushed the envelope. But this time he's taken it too far."
Barry says he doesn't anticipate that the station will broadcast Limbaugh's program in the future. He says the station has yet to fill the afternoon 12-3 time slot. Limbaugh has apologized to the law student for his choice of words. Attempts to reach Limbaugh's company were not successful.
- Rush Limbaugh