On Tuesday, Angela, a mother of five children from Prince William County, Virginia, called the Rush Limbaugh show.  She no doubt represents millions of conservative voters in her viewpoint that moms with small children should stay at home.  She said she won’t vote for Sarah Palin because she is not impressed with how Palin protected her young daughter during the 2008 campaign season, but it was obvious her bigger point was that mothers should be at home with their children (not fathers).

Talker Limbaugh did three things that, I think, could turn millions of Republican listeners similar to Angela away from Sarah Palin.

First, America’s Truth Detector, Rush Limbaugh, claimed she was a seminar caller (this is Rush’s term meaning a “fake caller” – a liberal pretending to be a nut-burger conservative).

“We gotta make a note to hire you again.  You’re one of the best paid actors we’ve ever had on this program.”

This means Limbaugh essentially called her a liar, suggesting people like her don’t really exist.  That would be a huge political miscalculation, I think.  Here is what Limbaugh said after she hung up:

“All right, Angela, it was.  That is Angela in Dumfries, Virginia.  You do have her number, right?  You got her number?  Okay, call her agent.”

Second, he called her a sexist.  And by modern feminist standards (those sadly now being embraced by many evangelicals and others on the right), she probably is “sexist”.  But she represents millions of Christians, many of us politically active, who believe that it is God’s ordained order for mothers to stay at home with their children.   But we are not a monolithic bunch.   Some believe that it is fine if Sarah Palin runs for President, but don’t think it ought to be the norm for mothers.  Others, like Angela, think she should not run.

Here is the key exchange on that point:

RUSH:  You’re not disappointing me.  You’re just a sexist.

CALLER:  Am I?  Well, that could be it, too.

RUSH:  A little sexism going on here, but that’s fine, everybody has, you know, boundaries to allow some of that stuff to happen….

CALLER:  Thanks for allowing me to talk.

RUSH:  Who would you vote for in the Republican field?

CALLER:  Say it again?

RUSH:  In the current Republican field, who would you vote for?

CALLER:  Mitch Daniels.

RUSH:  He’s got kids.

CALLER:  Well, his kids have a mother.

RUSH:  Okay.  So it’s okay for a father to have all kinds of kids and abandon ’em and leave them —

CALLER:  No, he wouldn’t be abandoning them.

RUSH:  — with the mother.

CALLER:  That’s right.  I’m a traditionalist, Rush, and I think a lot of conservatives are.

RUSH:  Well, Sarah Palin’s kids have a father.

CALLER:  That’s a father, what’s that have to do with being a mother?  Because he’s a father?

Limbaugh has bought into the paradigm that fathers and mothers have an equal responsibility to raise the children at home, that there is no distinctive role for mothers.  Or if he ever held the view at one time, he has abandoned it in order to justify criticizing non-Palin voters.

Third, he assumes that voters like us are worthless and should be ignored or insulted.   But that is a political loser. Though many Mitt Romney supporters have accused evangelicals of being bigots for opposing him because of his Mormonism, Romney never stooped so low as to articulate that view himself, even if he believed it.  He is a smart guy.  He needs to win those folks over, not alienate them.  Many moderates have mocked Mike Huckabee for being a creationist, and for denying the essentials of evolution, but he is not putting it in the faces of these opponents.  He is trying to win them.   John McCain stumbled badly in 2000 by insulting evangelicals and it may have cost himself the nomination.  It took him eight years to mend those fences, but having done so, he was able to win the GOP primaries by getting lots of evangelical voters to forgive him.  Sarah Palin has twice called those who think mothers should stay at home “Neanderthals”.  This is no way to influence people who probably think Margaret Thatcher an equal to Ronald Reagan.

 

I believe Limbaugh exhibited a rare goof with his last line:

RUSH:  It seems to me all this hating going on on Sarah Palin, for whatever reason, there are a lot of people who just don’t like the idea of a strong woman.  Well, isn’t that what we heard in explaining the criticism of Hillary?  We did.

Rush, who said that?  Who said Hillary was opposed because she was a strong woman?  The women you call Feminazis.   Now you are saying the same thing about opponents of Sarah Palin that they oppose her because she is a strong woman.   What does that say about you, Rush?  Of course, everyone knows you are not a feminazi.

 

10 comments
    1. Of course she is not responsible for Rush’s comments. But she has said the same thing about those who think women should stay at home, only she used the word “Neanderthal” rather than sexist. Do you think this is the way she should handle those who think mothers should stay at home?

      1. I wouldn’t have, but I’m not the one being told I shouldn’t run for office because I’m female.

        Is this a slow news day that you had to rehash something she said quite awhile ago that you’ve already posted on like once or twice?

      2. This is a current story about Limbaugh who was defending Sarah Palin against a caller who supports what she called a traditional view of motherhood. The story is about Palin and Limbaugh. There is only one line about Palin, which is entirely true.

      3. I wouldn’t have, but I’m not the one being told I shouldn’t run for office because I’m female.

        Is this a slow news day that you had to rehash something she said quite awhile ago that you’ve already posted on like once or twice?

  1. Rush was spot on here. I mean spot on. The lady may or may not have been a seminar caller (or “concern troll” if you will) but that’s beside the point.

    People who say Sarah Palin should basically go back to the kitchen and make some sammiches while the “men” handle things are just disgusting.

    Vander Hart, you are MORE disgusting for defending them.

    Sarah Palin comes from a culture that respects women as the leader. It is great Upik tradition. The Eskimos believe in the wise woman. The all powerful FEMALE leader.

    If you’d bothered to actually do some research on Palin you’d KNOW this!

    I suggest you read Stephen Mansfield’s book, “The Faith and Values of Sarah Palin”

    You’re a week-kneed squish, but Palin supporters, like Rush, and myself, are sick of the double standards. We are also sick of the so-called “men” who have all but destroyed these United States. This includes the “men” in both parties.

    Sarah Palin is a powerful leader with a steel spine. The kind of leader that gets things done. Americans RESPECT strong leaders. They DO NOT however, have any use for squishes, such as Shane Vander Hart!

    The way to deal with sexist, racist, or otherwise idiotic people is to call them out, not coddle them.

    Sarah Palin has a powerful message that resonates with the American people. If she runs for POTUS she will have her message heard far and wide. Those of us who actually know something about her, and her record in Alaska, know that she’s the best retail politician in the country. She’ll make her case to the people quite well.

    THAT is what is important, not fretting over how Rush smacked down some sexist loser. You squishes will never get it. You are part of the problem. You are too timid.

    The time for timidity is over. Our nation is circling the drain, and yet, squishes like you are fretting over nonsense like this.

    How disgusting!

  2. I heard that colored lady talking to Rush, she was so Proud to be on Rush’s show, she just loved to hear herself, just like BO he is so proud to have a job when he can force as many Americans out of their’s. BO just can’t take the “heat” and Sarah can work in the ‘Kitchen’ just fine! BO is on a 5 day vacation since he don’t want to hear all the Good News from India, I think the silent treatment would be good for BO and then present his Pink Slip!

  3. I heard that colored lady talking to Rush, she was so Proud to be on Rush’s show, she just loved to hear herself, just like BO he is so proud to have a job when he can force as many Americans out of their’s. BO just can’t take the “heat” and Sarah can work in the ‘Kitchen’ just fine! BO is on a 5 day vacation since he don’t want to hear all the Good News from India, I think the silent treatment would be good for BO and then present his Pink Slip!

  4. I am one of those women who was very insulted by Sarah’s Neandrethal comments. It isn’t that I don’t think women should be barefoot and pregnant, nor do I think that women can’t achieve many things in their lives, but I do think as a mom your children always come first.

    So for Rush to say these women don’t exist is foolish and ignorant.

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