Radio talker Rush Limbaugh is not much for subtle thinking or careful analysis. Still, he draws millions of listeners every weekday, feeding them a steady diet of conservative pabulum, would-be facts, and exaggerated charges against liberals and other folks he doesn't care for—it's a long, long list.
Even so, El Rushbo reached a new low point the other day in his comments on presidential candidate John Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth. When Mrs. Edwards announced that her cancer had returned, Rush couldn't resist putting a political spin on the news.
According to Rush, the Edwards cancer is a political opportunity for the Edwards campaign, which is using it to keep the campaign in the news and generate new momentum. Rush's theory (if you can call it that) is that liberals like Edwards are so cynical and opportunistic that they will do anything to keep themselves in the news.
But Rush is the real cynic. Rush attributes motives to Edwards that the former North Carolina senator and his wife do not hold; namely, that they are purposely exploiting Mrs. Edwards' cancer for partisan political advantage.
We don't believe it for a minute. We can't believe other Americans believe it either.
Cancer, as even Rush should know, is a nonpartisan disease. Just ask Tony Snow, the White House spokesman, who announced today that his cancer has returned. Unlike Rush, we don't see any political angle to cancer. We wish Tony Snow well, as all Americans should.