Politicians are such whores that they will grovel to whomever gets them elected or re-elected. They would sell their souls to the devil if served their purposes. Such is the case with Congressman Tiahrt.
Just last week, I wrote that Kansas Congressman Todd Tiahrt had been asked at a Kansas City Star Editorial Board meeting whether Limbaugh was the de facto leader of the Republican Party.
"No, no, he's just an entertainer," replied Tiahrt, who's running for the U.S. Senate in 2010.
Whoah. Those are fighting words for dittoheads and other supporters of Limbaugh.
The radio talk-show host already has gone after people who have refused to crown him king of the GOP -- or, to be fairer, at least as a powerful spokesman for the ultra-conservative cause.
My post zinged around blog land, and eventually this appeared on the Wichita Eagle blog.
The money quote from Tiahrt spokesman Sam Sackett to the newspaper's editorial board: "The congressman believes Rush is a great leader of the conservative movement in America — not a party leader responsible for election losses. Nothing the congressman said diminished the role Rush has played and continues to play in the conservative movement."
Ah, but the story doesn't end there.
On Tuesday afternoon, the Democratic National Campaign Committee released a statement, which began with this headline and first paragraph:
Tiahrt to Leader Limbaugh: I’m sorry!
Add Congressman Todd Tiahrt to the list of spineless Republicans who can’t stand up to their party’s leader – Rush Limbaugh. Just days after claiming Rush is “just an entertainer,” Congressman Tiahrt is now singing a different tune. Fearful of Leader Limbaugh’s retribution, Congressman Tiahrt’s office quickly issued an apology praising Limbaugh stating 'The Congressman believes Rush is a great leader.'
Just like the Republicans that have come before him to grovel for Rush Limbaugh’s forgiveness, Congressman Tiahrt proved once again that Limbaugh is the de facto leader of the Republican Party,” said Gabby Adler, the Midwestern Regional Press Secretary for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Instead of standing up for the people of Kansas to fight for them during this economic crisis, Congressman Tiahrt has made it clear that he would prefer to take his orders from Rush Limbaugh.
There are some in Republican party that will stand up to Limbaugh. At least at first:
Yesterday, Rep. John Shadegg became the sixth prominent Republican official to challenge Rush Limbaugh's control over the party.
Shadegg disagrees with radio commentator Rush Limbaugh, who has said he hopes Obama and his liberal policies fail.
"I sincerely hope he creates the strongest recovery possible," Shadegg said. "It is petty to worry about who gets the credit when people are losing their jobs and their homes."
As for Limbaugh, Shadegg said, "I think he is an entertainment personality who is an interesting factor in American politics. I agree with much of what he says on some issues, but not on other issues."
Shadegg is known as a staunch conservative. After rising in the leadership earlier in his career, he has been an also-ran in races for majority leader and minority whip in the last two congresses. This year he went so far as to announce and then retract retirement plans. And now he's called out Limbaugh! If you're not keeping track at home -- and why not? -- Chris Orr has been on the case, following five previous officials who have made similar comments about the King of Conservative Talk Radio (Kansas Rep. Todd Tiahrt, Georgia Rep. Phil Gingrey, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, RNC Chairman Michael Steele, and NY House candidate Jim Tedisco) and been forced to apologize after an uproar in the conservative base.