Trump Medal of Freedom winner pushes homophobic attack on 2020 Democrat

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Trump awarded Limbaugh with the honor during his State of the Union address, despite Limbaugh's many years of promoting hateful rhetoric on his radio show.

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh made homophobic remarks this week about Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, days after receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Donald Trump.

During a segment on his eponymous radio show Tuesday, Limbaugh criticized those who were unsure how to talk to their children about Trump and his extreme policies and statements. He specifically cited Buttigieg, who he said had run an ad "going on and on and on and on and on, about how parents in America are struggling to explain President Trump to their children."

It was not immediately clear to which ad Limbaugh was referring.

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Limbaugh then displayed a photo of Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, kissing his husband Chasten, on the show's livestream for subscribers.

"So [Buttigieg] says Trump causes problems for parents, what about that? If you're not watching on the DittoCam, what it is, a picture of Mayor Pete kissing his husband — which he does frequently," said Limbaugh.

He then moved on to attack other Democratic candidates vying for the party's nomination.

The clip was first flagged by Media Matters for America on Tuesday afternoon.

Limbaugh has used his nationally syndicated radio show to promote attacks on LGBTQ people for decades. Among other things:

  • Limbaugh said gay students who were harassed at school were "trumpeting" their sexuality and "inviting dissent."
  • Limbaugh referred to a transgender person as needing "a chop-a-dick-offa'-me operation."
  • He has also referred to gender reassignment surgery as "add-a-dick-to-me."
  • In 2009, Limbaugh referred to then-Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), who is gay, as "a banking queen."
  • Referring to same-sex marriage, Limbaugh asked in 2012, "We're supposed to sit by while great traditions and institutions like marriage are ripped to shreds?"
  • Limbaugh compared same-sex marriage to bestiality.
  • Limbaugh has falsely connected same-sex marriage and pedophilia.

Limbaugh has also frequently used his broadcasts to promote racism, misogyny, xenophobia, and to forward lies and smears of Democrats and progressives.

Despite this, Trump awarded Limbaugh with the Medal of Freedom during his State of the Union speech on Feb. 4.

"Rush Limbaugh, thank you for decades of tireless devotion to our country," Trump said as first lady Melania Trump hung the medal around Limbaugh's neck.

A previous version of this story misidentified the award as the Medal of Honor. Limbaugh received the Medal of Freedom.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.