College students protest House speaker over Rush Limbaugh honor

Friday, March 9, 2012
FILE - In this Jan. 13, 2009 file photo, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh talks with guests in the East Room of the White House in Washington. Limbaugh apologized Saturday, March 3, 2012, to a Georgetown University law student he had branded a "slut" and "prostitute" after fellow Republicans as well as Democrats criticized him and several advertisers left his program. The student, Sandra Fluke, had testified to congressional Democrats in support of their national health care policy that would compel her college to offer health plans that cover her birth control. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds, File)

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Even though Republican House leaders tried to focus on legislative accomplishments as the first half of the 2012 legislative session came to an end Thursday, there still plenty of focus on the controversy involving the placement of Rush Limbaugh in the Hall of Famous Missourians.

About 20 protesters from the University of Missouri staged a short picket line outside House Speaker Steven Tilley's office Thursday morning. Included were 13 female students who held a meeting with Tilley to voice their opinion about the Speaker's nomination of the controversial radio host. Limbaugh is embroiled in a media controversy after referring to a Georgetown University law student who testified in favor of birth control coverage as a "slut" and a "prostitute."

"I listened to what their concerns were, and I explained to them why I nominated him, and we may just disagree about it, but I certainly made time for them and brought them into my office and listened to them," Tilley said. "I respect their position and I hope they respect mine."

Tilley remained defiant when asked if he was reconsidering his decision.

"Millions of people listen to him every day," he said. "He is an entertainer and I don't like everything he says, but coming from humble beginnings in Cape Girardeau and achieving the success he has is something that is noteworthy and something that I felt like deserved to be in the Hall of Famous Missourians."

Democrats, who are trying official channels to stop Tilley from displaying Limbaugh's bust in the Hall of Famous Missourians on the Capitol's third-floor rotunda said they will continue to fight.

"We're going to continue to let people know what's going on inside their state Capitol," said House Minority Leader Mike Talboy, D-Kansas City. "And to enshrine somebody like that, I think, is a really bad precedent to set."

Talboy said he and other Democratic lawmakers are pursuing various avenues to stop Limbaugh's bust from being displayed in the Capitol, even though inductees into the Missouri Hall of Fame have traditionally been the sole prerogative of the speaker of the House.

Pertinent address:

Jefferson City, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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