Is Rush Limbaugh trying to suggest that President Obama is gay?
Since he can no longer claim that Barack Obama was born in Kenya or that the president is Muslim, conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh has decided to back another right wing conspiracy theory: the dearth of women who have admitted to dating the commander-in-chief.
Chatting on his show yesterday, Limbaugh brought up an email that is apparently circulating around that right wing blogosphere, an email that wonders about Obama’s past romances.
“You probably have seen this [email] going around. This one is, ‘Where are all of Obama’s former girlfriends?’ It’s a takeoff on where are all of the students Obama taught who claim to have been inspired by him when he taught law at the University of Chicago,” said Limbaugh. “Where are all of the former classmates of Obama who can tell wonderful stories about their experience with Obama on campus or in the classroom?”
He continued, “They are interesting because those people haven’t surfaced. There aren’t any ex-girlfriends that have admitted it. Students that have been inspired by Obama as a professor, they haven’t come forth. Media hasn’t dug ‘em up. It is interesting from the standpoint that the guy has not been vetted yet.”
Limbaugh concludes, “It’s very strange that we know so little about a guy who’s written two autobiographies. It really is strange.”
The only thing strange here is the angle Limbaugh is playing. Sure, he wants to create an aura of secrecy and luridness around the president, but the explicitly romantic nature of his remarks — and the email itself — goes beyond the standard conspiracy theory. Wondering whether the president has ex-girlfriends is akin to saying, “Maybe president Obama is gay”—a lame rumor tabloids have been hammering for months.
Limbaugh and his ilk are assuming that Obama’s ex-girlfriends haven’t surfaced because he doesn’t have any — which they take as evidence of shenanigans — rather than the two most obvious explanations: either the women have the dignity not to kiss and tell, or the president has asked them to stay out of the spotlight.