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17 Aug, 2020 21:49

‘Joe and the Hoe’: Rush Limbaugh’s mockery of Kamala Harris’ sex life triggers outrage & accusations of skewed priorities

‘Joe and the Hoe’: Rush Limbaugh’s mockery of Kamala Harris’ sex life triggers outrage & accusations of skewed priorities

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh’s “sexist” riff on Democratic VP candidate Kamala Harris’ past relationship with a powerful older politician has liberals outraged and conservatives rolling their eyes.

In his Friday broadcast, Limbaugh brought up the NBA’s dismissal of a freelance photographer who had posted a mock campaign ad of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden with Harris captioned ‘Joe and the Hoe’ on Facebook.

Noting the photographer was given the boot over a “sexist Facebook post referencing Kamala Harris,” he explained the ‘Joe and the Hoe’ quip was a reference to Harris’ sexual relationship with California Democrat Willie Brown, the married San Francisco mayor 31 years her senior who became her mentor at the beginning of her career.

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Limbaugh also cited a story published in the Spectator magazine arguing that Harris “slept her way up” into California political life. The writer argues that Harris' past relationship with Brown should gall other women, since the stereotype of high-ranking women “sleeping their way to the top” persists even in the feminist 21st century. 

Harris, the shock jock agreed, owed her career to being the “mattress” – not “mistress,” he was careful to say – of this high-powered political figure.

While Limbaugh also remarked on how it was odd that the pair of stories had generated so little reaction in the mainstream media, his own comments about them were discovered on Monday by liberal watchdog Media Matters, which accused the popular radio host of “pushing vile sexist smears against Kamala Harris.

Twitter users descended on him in force, with some demanding he be stripped of the Presidential Medal of Honor President Donald Trump had recently bestowed on him.

Many suggested Limbaugh – whose addiction to opioid pain pills became a major scandal when it was revealed in 2006, compounded by the hypocrisy of his on-air condemnation of drug users – lacked a moral leg to stand on. 

Others wished for his death from the cancer he was diagnosed with earlier this year.

However, many conservatives pointed out that the same people clutching their pearls over Limbaugh’s words had themselves wished death on Trump just days earlier, when it was announced the president’s brother had passed away.

Fact-checking website Snopes chimed in on the matter, saying it could not quite debunk the extramarital relationship between Harris and Brown, but rated it a “mixture,” arguing Brown was only “technically” married at the time. The site noted he had been separated from his wife for years and that his relationship with Harris was over by the time she won elected office.

For his part, in addition to admitting the two “dated,” Brown acknowledged he “may have influenced [Harris’] career by appointing her to two state commissions” when he was Assembly speaker, and conceded that he “certainly helped her with her first race for district attorney in San Francisco.”

However, he said he “also helped the careers of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Gov. Gavin Newsom, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and a host of other politicians,” none of whom he (presumably) slept with.

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