Editor: A day after Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-GA, took Obama's bait and went after radio host Rush Limbaugh this week, he ate his words. The damage was done, however. Americans saw Republicans and conservatives sniping at each other when we should be focused on stopping the Democrats' runaway train of statism. Here is the story on Gingrey's initial, soon-retracted criticism of Rush. And below is an open letter from our regular contributor Red at Heart, a grandmother in Colorado Springs, taking him to task. Dear Congressman Gingrey:
As one of the 20 million-plus listeners of the Rush Limbaugh radio program, I am writing to comment about your remarks made with respect to Mr. Limbaugh.
First of all, the listening audience of Rush is a highly ignored constituency in this country. We lined up in support of G.W. Bush, and stood by while the Left vilified a decent man. We did not always agree with him, especially the fact that he forgot his veto pen when he moved into the Oval Office. We have not taken to the streets to protest Mr. Obama's election or the voter fraud that may have well put him in office. We have stood by silently and watched the most expensive inauguration in American history take place while the rest of the country strains under a recessive period, and not one Congressman spoke out against the waste. We stood by silently while the minister giving his benediction made comments meant to further divide our country along racial lines, and not one member of Congress spoke out to rebuke it. We watched folks in office, like you, sit idly by during the campaign and not make noise about questionable campaign contributions, voter registration irregularities, questionable associations with persons that normally would not fit our template of what we want to see in our president, or the fact that Mr. Obama was never pressed to release typical and expected documents prior to the election. We did not hear one Congressman in front of a national TV microphone exposing Obama's votes in Illinois on late term abortion. Many of his supporters in Nov. did not even know his position on abortion. Why? Because elected officials that have a duty to tell the truth failed to do so. We do not have the microphone on the floor of the House or Senate. We send people there to do that job for us. When we see failure to speak out on our behalf, we turn to other sources with the courage, leadership and voice to do it for us.
The 20 million-plus Americans that follow and support Rush Limbaugh are tired of weak politicians that bow at the feet of the media. We are tired of the media and pundits setting our policy in this country and we are tired of having no place to go for truth and a refresher course in common sense, ethics, and adherence to the Constitution. Our moral fabric of this country is shredding, politicians such as Pelosi and Reid, rule the day without regard. Had it not been for Mr. Limbaugh and others like him, Pelosi's plan to stimulate the economy by abortion and birth control would have gone unnoticed. It was only after the 'right wing extremists' on talk radio fired up the base that it became a well known issue and was quickly extinguished. Moderate and centrist Republicans are losing elections to right-leaning Democrats. The writing is in the wall, yet the realization of what we need to do to win elections goes by the wayside.
As a physician, the Republicans in this country would like to see you and others with the expertise and knowledge to start talking about healthcare reform and how it should be shaped around conservative values and the free market. There is work to be done to speak in a clear and loud voice. Pandering and trying to 'get along' with those that have no tolerance for the other side of the aisle has lost us elections and majorities in '06 and '08. If we don’t have leadership to stand up and take these issues on, we lose again in '10 and '12. There is a critical poverty in this country when it comes to lack of truth and getting information out to the public.
Please refrain from attacking private citizens. Yes, the average person does not know what your job is like or what you must do in order to get through the day as a U.S. Congressman. We do, however, understand that we are sick and tired with weakness, giving in to policies that continue to weaken and diminish our economy and our standing in the world. We are tired of the media and foreign campaign donations shaping our policy, driving our elections and determining our course. Your comments about Rush Limbaugh have given fuel to the Democrat fire to get him off the air. Free speech will die in this country, thanks to bias, lies and fear.
Just as Mr. Obama is making a media blitz to try and convince the country that he truly wishes a bipartisan approach to his stimulus, he is also slyly setting the stage for removing dissenting voices such as Mr. Limbaugh from public airwaves. The stimulus bill could have already been voted on and passed due to Democrat majority. Mr. Obama plans to hang any failure it may have around the necks of Republicans that vote with him.
Sometimes being on the outside and looking in provides us with a clear picture. We watch what happens day to day in Washington. We see political posturing, gross over-spending, waste and negligence. We have a voice or two in this great nation that have a platform to speak out against this, and the Washington mindset is to silence those voices.
Why do we not hear politicians speaking out against other dissenting voices such as Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews, John Stewart, Barbara Walters, Andrea Mitchell, Bill Mayer and a host of others that hate Republicans, despise conservatism and will go to any lengths to push their liberal agenda? Why are you, and others in Congress, that are getting a bit uncomfortable with Rush Limbaugh's comments, also framing your discussion around boisterous, outspoken rhetoric coming from the other side?
We have a local talk show here in Colorado Springs and day after day, average citizens call in to say, "I want my country back." If Rush Limbaugh did not have a message that speaks to the heart and minds of millions upon millions of Americans, the market would not be there for him to speak. Let freedom ring, please.