Rush On Tour: AIDS, Misogyny, And Suicide Used As Punchlines

Between 1989 and 1991 Rush Limbaugh went on a series of lectures he described as the “Rush To Excellence Tour.” Limbaugh, then a newly launched national radio host, used the tour to promote himself and his ideas.

In tapes of these performances that Media Matters acquired, it's clear that despite the recent controversy over Limbaugh's misogynist and sexist comments, those themes have been part of his act for several decades.

Rush To Excellence Tour '89

Limbaugh attacked Surgeon General C. Everett Koop's recommendation that condoms be used as a preventative measure against AIDS, explaining that one of the best way to prevent AIDS is “do not ask another man to bend over and make love at the exit point. That's what you don't do.”

Describing protesters outside the event, Limbaugh said that “feminism was established so that unattractive ugly broads could have easy access to the mainstream.” He went on to describe them as a “bunch of cows.”

Rush To Excellence Tour '90

Twenty-two days before Limbaugh's performance homeless rights advocate Mitch Snyder committed suicide. During his show, Limbaugh said Snyder had “assumed room temperature recently.”

Limbaugh went on to mock Snyder, dedicating his performance with singer Clarence “Frogman” Henry of “Ain't Got No Home” to the advocate.

Limbaugh offered his solution to the issue of women serving in combat, suggesting an “Amazon battalion” with “synchronized menstrual cycles” who would go into battle.

Rush To Excellence Tour '91

Limbaugh joked about a law firm attempting to hire a female associate and choosing the best candidate on the basis of “biggest boobs.”

Discussing the bankruptcy of the Mustang Ranch brothel in Nevada and stories that the federal government would have to operate the business, Limbaugh said he recommended that “civil cervix” exams be given.

As Media Matters has previously detailed, Limbaugh has a long history of working in concert with Republican politicians and elected officials.

In this video from the “National Conservative Forum” on July 27, 1991, former Reagan education secretary and George H.W. Bush drug czar Bill Bennett “pays tribute” to Limbaugh as “a national resource.”