UPDATE: Rush Limbaugh responded to Newt Gingrich's criticisms on his radio show Monday. Politico reports:
"I'm frankly getting tired of talking about Newt. I mean, it's a pointless exercise," Limbaugh said of Gingrich's dismissal of him on Meet the Press. "I'm surprised by nothing when I'm dealing with people in the media who think they're in politics.... They are fly-by-night operators, and most of them stand for nothing until they see a poll about what the American people want, and then they go out and try to say one way or another what the American people want while trying to falsely hold onto an ideology at the same time -- and you can't count on them. You can't depend on them. They will sell you out; they will throw you overboard to save themselves, faster than anything. And they'll use you on their way up as often as they can at the same time."
"I mean, next week Newt could come out and profess his total admiration and love for me if it would serve his purposes," he continued. "They're running TV ads against me. Newt Gingrich wishes they were running TV ads against him."
Newt Gingrich became the highest profile Republican yet to push back against Rush Limbaugh, saying on "Meet the Press" that it's "irrational" to hope for the President of the United States to fail.
"You've got to want the president to succeed," said the former House Speaker. "You're irrational if you don't want the president to succeed. Because if he doesn't succeed the country doesn't succeed... I don't think anyone should want the president of the United States to fail. I want some of his policies to be stopped. But I don't want the president of the United States to fail. I want him to learn new policies."
The remarks were an obvious shot at Limbaugh, even if the conservative talk show host wasn't named. There has been a brooding feud between Limbaugh and Gingrich over the future of the Republican Party that briefly erupted during the recent CPAC convention. Responding to remarks by Gingrich that "the era of Reagan is over," Limbaugh declared during his hour-long closing address: "Our own movement has members trying to throw Reagan out while the Democrats know they can't accomplish what they want unless they appeal to Reagan voters. We have got to stamp this out within this movement because it will tear us apart. It will guarantee we lose elections."
That Gingrich would respond by pushing back against Limbaugh's now-infamous line rooting for Obama's failure suggests just how testy the relationship between the two has become.
Gingrich was highly critical of nearly every other aspect of the current administration, from its economic policies to its political tactics. At one point, he called the Obama administration cynical for trying to make an issue out of Limbaugh. On Sunday's talk show circuit, Sen. Lindsey Graham was the only other person willing to put his head on the line with some anti-Rush rhetoric.
"I think Rush Limbaugh's prominence in the Republican Party is not what we are talking about. I think his prominence in the radio world to gin up people for conservative causes is prominent. He doesn't play in the Republican Party. He is not an elected official," said the South Carolina Republican. "I'm Lindsey Graham. He has been on me for two or three or four years for different things and I take it for what it is worth. ... Stop talking about Rush Limbaugh at the White House."
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