More than a year after Rush Limbuagh made headlines for referring to a Georgetown law student as a “slut” on his radio show, the host is reportedly fed up with being blamed for declining ad sales. When Sandra Fluke spoke before House Democratic members about religious organizations not offering contraception to women in health insurance plans, Limbaugh went on a rant.
“What does it say about the college co-ed Sandra Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex?” Limbaugh asked. “What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She’s having so much sex she can’t afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex.”
Naturally the host’s remarks drew a big response for the public, including a ban on Limbaugh’s advertisers. According to the non-profit group Media Matters, several hundred advertisers dropped Limbaugh’s show. The CEO of Cumulus Media, which syndicates the show on 40 stations across the country, Lew Dickey blames Limbaugh’s remarks for declining ad sales, Politico reports.
A source says Limbaugh is fed up with being the scapegoat for Dickey’s revenue issues and is considering ending his show’s affiliation agreement with Cumulus when the deal expires at the end of the year. Should Limbaugh’s show leave Cumulus, that would remove him from New York City, the number one radio market in the country.
Dickey said in an August 2012 earnings call that the company’s top three stations had lost $5.5 million, partially due to the advertiser boycott. He reiterated the problem in a similar call in March 2013, citing “some of the issues that happened a year ago.”
Dickey is scheduled for another earnings call Tuesday (May 7). The source claims that Dickey’s use of Limbaugh as an excuse for falling ad sales is unjustified. “It’s a failure of the entire station. And trying to blame Rush for that is not much of a business partnership.”