Rush Limbaugh Attacks Sandra Fluke Again, Now Over Stafford Loans
A seemingly innocuous tweet from young activist Sandra Fluke caused right-wing radio host Rush Limbaugh to attack her once again on his show.
During a segment Tuesday, Limbaugh accused Fluke of "coordinating" with President Obama to "scare students about the interest rates on their loans." Why? Simply because Fluke tweeted about the looming Stafford loan interest increase on the same day that Obama mentioned the issue in a speech at the University of North Carolina.
“What a coincidence, Barack Obama just warned the students at the University of North Carolina that interest rates on federal student loans will double if Congress doesn’t act by July 1,” Limbaugh said. "They’ll go from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. Word-for-word what Sandra Fluke just tweeted herself and, of course, she is represented by operatives inside the White House.”
(Read More: #DontDoubleMyRate)
But the Stafford loan interest rate has been far from "insider White House information." Earlier this year, Campus Progress and other progressive groups delivered a petition to Congress signed by 130,000 people protesting the possible rate increase, which would impact more than 7 million students and cost the average borrower an extra $1,000 over the life of the loan.
And, it's true, the president made public calls on Congress this week to act—in speeches at UNC, the University of Colorado, and the University of Iowa, in addition to an appearance on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" during which he "slow jammed" about the issue.
Still, Limbaugh continued to attack Fluke, saying that "contraception isn’t enough — some people want their education paid for by other people, too.”
Fluke defended herself on "The Last World with Lawrence O’Donnell," saying she didn’t think her tweet on the issue would create a “political fireball.” She explained the reasoning behind the tweet: “I’m concerned about student loans because I’m a young person who has student loans and I have friends who have these types of student loans and who are struggling to pay them back and find jobs."
Limbaugh apparently didn't learn his lesson after the last time he attacked the Georgetown Law student, which caused him to lose more than 140 sponsors. Then, he called her a “prostitute” and a “slut” for testifying at a congressional hearing on women's health and contraception.
Kellan Schmidt is a journalism intern with Campus Progress.