More than 20 advertisers have now reportedly run from Rush Limbaugh after his apology to Georgetown student Sandra Fluke failed to quell the media firestorm that was sparked by the conservative radio host’s characterization of her as a "slut" and a "prostitute."
Sensa Weight Loss program, clothing company Bonobos, John Deere, telecommunications company Polycom and AccuQuote life insurance are among the sponsors who requested today that their ads be removed from the show, according to the Atlantic Wire.
On Monday, Limbaugh lost AOL, while both Sears and Allstate went on the record to say their ads ran accidentally during the program and would do so no longer. Sears is currently individually responding to every tweet it receives on the subject with the following: “Sears and Kmart did not intentionally advertise on The Rush Limbaugh Show.”
The ad boycott has not yet crippled Limbaugh, however, as his midday show currently holds first place in terms of public radio listenership, with more than 1 million more tuning in to The Rush Limbaugh Show than The Sean Hannity Show and 2 million more than both National Public Radio’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, according to The New York Times.
Limbaugh apologized again to Fluke at the start of his show on Monday, The Washington Post reported, but his contrition did little to stem the hemorrhaging of advertiser dollars. He also on Monday took to his website to explain why he apologized to Fluke and insisted that the apology was sincere. He also took time in that message to take a swing at his liberal opponents, saying that he “descended to their level” when using the derogatory words to attack Fluke.
Still, at least one advertiser stepped forward Monday to say it will increase its ad spend on the Limbaugh program. A spokesman for Winning Our Future, a super PAC backing former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s presidential bid, told The Boston Herald that the group purchased more airtime.