At what point does political rhetoric turn to disrespectful vitriol? Some are suggesting that we found out today when conservative talk radio provocateur Rush Limbaugh ostensibly referred to President Obama as “you jackass!” Of course, calling out sitting presidents did not begin with Obama, nor President Bush for that matter. Perhaps the opinion media rhetoric gone too far?
Writing for ABC News Political Punch blog, Steven Portnoy reports
Derision of the president on his program is nothing new, but Rush Limbaugh’s tone today may have struck the ears of regular listeners as particularly disdainful, taking his contempt of the president to a new level.
The nation’s preeminent conservative talk radio host referred to Mr. Obama as a “jackass,” an “economic illiterate” and an “idiot, where capitalism is concerned.”
The rough stuff came during a monologue on the president’s position on extending the Bush tax cuts to all but the top two percent of wage earners.
There is no question that the vast majority of those listening to Mr. Limbaugh likely agree with his sentiment, but there is a legitimate question to be asked. Is it appropriate for an individual broadcasting over government regulated airwaves to call the sitting president a jackass? Or is he just looking for attention? Or both?
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