10/10/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Rush Limbaugh Uses Down Syndrome Story Rehashed from Hannity


I heard it on Hannity first.

Then the very next day, just yesterday, I heard it on Rush.

Yeah, I listen and watch all sorts of things to see what the opposition is doing. But this latest stunt was one of their worst.

It's the story of Chloe, a Down Syndrome child, whose parents had an encounter with McCain and Palin on a campaign stop. But that's just the wind up. The pitch is personal, meant to move, as well as use an event to capitalize on a special need's child and the sympathy it engenders to bring in votes for McCain-Palin.

Republicans are nothing if not cynical, opportunistic and always willing to play an angle, no matter how repugnant.

Once "Kurt in Pennsylvania" started telling his story on Rush, I knew it sounded familiar. He went through the same patter as he did the day before.

CALLER: And I wanted to share a story with you.

It just so happened to be the exact same story the caller had shared on Hannity's show the day before. What a coincidence.

...A week ago last Saturday we went to the Palin-McCain rally in Washington, Pennsylvania, was the day after he announced her, and we have a five-year-old daughter with Down syndrome, and we made a sign that said: "We Love Kids with Down Syndrome." So when they pulled in in their bus the sign did catch their, McCain and Palin and the rest of their family, it caught their eye, we could tell, they gave us a thumbs-up from the bus, so we were all excited just by that --

RUSH: Wait, wait, wait. Who gave you the thumbs up, McCain and Palin?

CALLER: McCain, Palin, Cindy McCain, we could see them from the bus. We were in a position where we had eye contact with them --

RUSH: Oh, cool!

Only this time, unlike Sean, Rush was offered pictures of the event. He immediately asked for permission to put them on his website, even saying he'd give "Kurt" his super secret email so he could send him the shots. Of course, one of the shots was a special one with Sarah Palin.

After Rush got through, the National Review was only too willing to push the propaganda along.

Having been around radio for well over fifteen years, doing interviews across the country, having my own show (and then losing it), while I try to get back on the air, I know this stuff. When Hannity has a caller on, then that same caller suddenly and miraculously appears on Rush's show, which evolves into a big PR event, it's not by accident. Manufacturing these events is what the right-wing does best.

Using a Down Syndrome child to help their candidate get votes is just their latest low.

Taylor Marsh is a political analyst who's been seen on CNN and MSNBC, talk radio personality, and author. Twittering daily.