Pence Defends Beck, Limbaugh On House Floor
October 23, 2009 at 4:13 AM (PT)
Concerns by some Republican leaders that talkers like GLENN BECK and RUSH LIMBAUGH are hurting the party's image have drawn a response from House Republican Conference Chairman (and former talk host himself) MIKE PENCE (R-IN), who responded to an article in POLITICO by issuing a defense of the talkers and the "tea party" movement.
PENCE spoke on the floor of Congress THURSDAY to address the criticism, saying, "You know, the American people cherish their freedom of speech and a free and independent press. That's why I found this morning's headlines so troubling. Goaded on by a WHITE HOUSE, increasingly intolerant of criticism, lately the national media has taken aim at conservative commentators in radio and television. Suggesting that they only speak for a small group of activists and even suggesting in one report today that Republicans in Washington are 'worried about their electoral effect.'
"Well, that's hogwash.
"To suggest that men and women that are taking a stand for fiscal discipline and traditional values in the national debate today only speak for 'grassroots activists' is absurd. As evidenced by the hundreds of thousands that filled town hall meetings this summer and the nearly a million Americans who gathered here in WASHINGTON in SEPTEMBER. Millions of Americans, Republicans, Democrats and Independents are worried about liberal social policies and runaway federal spending, deficit and debt.
"So to my friends in the so-called 'mainstream media' I say, 'conservative talk show hosts may not speak for everybody, but they speak for more Americans than you do.'"