A memo being circulated by the distribution company behind Republican shock jock Rush Limbaugh has revealed a massive flight from Limbaugh’s program in the wake of his offensive comments about a Georgetown law student.
The companies include major corporate players like Sony, British Petroleum, McDonald’s, NBC, Toyota, Subway, Lowes, Autozone, Geico, Visa, Mastercard, American Express, State Farm, IBM and many others.
And in a surprise reveal, it appears that the U.S. Army is among them.
Activists have been pressuring corporate advertisers to withdraw from Limbaugh’s show after he called a woman a “slut” and a “prostitute” who should publish sex tapes online if she obtains contraceptive coverage from her private insurance policy.
Even Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI), who chairs the Armed Services Committee, was leaned on by activists calling for Limbaugh to be taken off the Armed Forces Network. Levin said he would like to see Limbaugh off the network as well, but the Pentagon has not yet initiated a review. Levin added that Congress should not get involved, saying that he hopes the administrators of the Armed Forces Network will see just how offensive Limbaugh’s is and take it off the air.
In all, 141 advertisers have left Limbaugh’s show so far, but just 50 were known before the memo surfaced. It shows that 91 additional companies have ditched not just Limbaugh, but right-wing radio talkers altogether, including Limbaugh acolytes Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and Michael Savage. Limbaugh is often cited as the unofficial voice of the Republican Party.
The memo leaked Monday was given to the Traffic Directors Guild of America by Premiere Radio Networks, which distributes Limbaugh’s show to hundreds of stations nation-wide. It originally appeared on the guild’s website, but was deleted soon thereafter. A Google cache search revealed the list, however, and it was first spotted by liberal blog Think Progress.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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