Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity aren't going away

Even if Cumulus drops their talk shows, other radio stations will likely pick up the controversial conservative hosts.

By Jonathan Berr Jul 30, 2013 9:43AM
File photo of radio talk show host and political commentator Rush Limbaugh at Heinz Field on November 14, 2010 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (© George Gojkovich/Getty Images)Haters of Rush Limbaugh (pictured) and Sean Hannity, I hate to bust your bubble, but the country's top conservative talk show hosts aren't going anywhere. Even if, as Politico recently reported, Cumulus Radio (CMLS) drops their shows when their contracts expire at the end of the year.

That's the view of Talkers Magazine publisher Michael Harrison, who tells MSN Money that if Cumulus does drop Limbaugh and Hannity, their shows will likely get picked up in many if not all of the same markets on other radio stations. For instance, the hosts would leave New York's WABC for WOR, which Clear Channel, the distributor of Limbaugh and Hannity, acquired last year.

"These new stations will he happy to have them," he said, adding that it's certain that Limbaugh and Hannity are leaving Cumulus, though it seems likely. "The industry has been talking about it for a year."

According to Politico, talks between Cumulus and Clear Channel's Premiere Networks "broke down due to disagreements over the cost of the distribution rights." The rift, however, may run deeper.

Indeed, there has been bad blood between Limbaugh and Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey for months. Dickey had blamed Limbaugh's 2012 comments about Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke for indirectly causing a $2.4 million decline in revenue. The company carries Limbaugh and Hannity on 40 stations.

The Cumulus issue doesn't indicate that conservative talk radio is dying. In fact, it shows the opposite. Politico is reporting that Cumulus might move some of its existing talent, such as Mike Huckabee, Mark Levin and Michael Savage -- none of whom are anyone's idea of a liberal -- into one of the slots vacated by Limbaugh and Hannity, who rank first and second on Talker's Heavy Hundred list of the country's most important talk show hosts.

Limbaugh, in particular, is certainly a survivor. After the uproar over his remarks about Fluke, including his calling her a slut, several big-name advertisers, such as CVS (CVS) and Walt Disney (DIS), dropped his show, according to Media Matters for America, a liberal media watchdog group that's often critical of conservative talk radio.

Although Limbaugh apologized for the incident, the loss of sponsors doesn't seem to have fazed him. Recently, he got into hot water again for his racially tinged remarks about the acquittal of George Zimmerman. But no apology appears forthcoming.

Jonathan Berr does not own shares of the listed stocks. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.

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Jul 30, 2013 12:44PM
The first word of the article says "Haters".  I guess that's the left's way of have a civilized discourse when you don't agree with Rush or Hannity.  
Jul 30, 2013 12:23PM

"Although Limbaugh apologized for the Fluke, the loss of sponsors doesn't seem to have fazed him. Recently, he got into hot water again for his racially tinged remarks about the acquittal of George Zimmerman. But no apology appears forthcoming."


No apology necessary in either case. Fluke was a slut and Treyvon thought he was a  badazz.

Jul 30, 2013 1:33PM
My kids don't like hearing whats right and wrong either.   Right is telling the kids don't  break your sisters toys!  Wrong is saying it's OK well get new ones.
Sandra Fluke wanted free birth control for women. Wrong is wanting others to pay for it. 
Government  loves the insurance industry, it makes you unaccountable for your actions.
Man, that sound just like politicians.

Jul 30, 2013 10:17AM
Good! I may only agree with half of what they say, but I agree with nothing the liberal trash media says.
Jul 30, 2013 12:19PM
They are here to stay because the liberal talking heads are so full of schit no one will listen to them.
Jul 30, 2013 11:38AM
So they lose 40 stations in multiple station markets.

Big Deal! They'll be picked up on other stations in those same markets and all will be able to enjoy Rush and Sean.
Jul 30, 2013 11:33AM

anthony wieners wife is a drama queen. now do y'all finally get it?

Jul 30, 2013 1:52PM
Jul 30, 2013 12:53PM
Hell no they are not going anywhere, are you kidding me
Jul 30, 2013 2:48PM

Amazing how the granola, tree huggers forget about Al Sharpton and his past yrs. of  accusations that were completely false;  race baters and black mailers on the left R the real racists?  I hope Zimmerman gets hundreds of millions from NBC for doctoring tapes and calling him White!  hello, he is spanish-look at him:  I wonder why the spanish people R not protesting?  (because they have morals--ethics and R hard workers; not welfare rats)  What if his last name was lopez or?  hmmm

the worst racists R on the left;  and cry babys all;  There is going to be no more free money for u hipocrits;  grow up?  if u do not like working for 7.65 an hr.  get a different  Obama job and quit taking jobs from beginners to the job market;  that is what the fast food industry is for;  Have Obama come through on his promises:  and quit blaming bush--congress--the trees--what ever!!! unbelievable how media is scared to challenge him on all the BS he has slung for 5 yrs..

The race baters will cause riots is why!  lets get it done with, once and for all;  Move to a different couontry if u want socialism;  it does not work in a free society?  geeze

Jul 30, 2013 3:14PM
Sandra Fluke wants taxpayers to fork over money for condoms her boyfriend cant afford?She can afford Georgetown,but not condoms.Many people can afford condoms,but not Georgetown..,Rush and Sean arent going anywhere.
Jul 30, 2013 3:14PM

MSN and Politico were really salivating over Limbaugh being off the air.  He's one of the last few media anchors who can put into words what most Americans believe.


Yet he's hated because he's capable of having an original thought and isn't afraid to call BS on what most politicians and media spew out as good things or facts.  If you're hated by the media machine for having a political viewpoint, you're probably doing some good things.

Jul 30, 2013 3:20PM
Jul 30, 2013 3:14PM
their voices better not EVER go away.  They are the only sound of reason this country has and I still cant believe America voted Obama back in office after all the facts these 2 presented to you. It just amazes me how blind America wants to remain.  Are we any better yet???
Jul 30, 2013 2:57PM

dicky is a idiot. Rush was right the woman is a slut.condoms are not that expensive and she was complaining that she would ahve to pay for them for several uses a week.

 funny though as liberal talk radio uses words like these so often you can't even tune in to one of them with out hearing it where as Rush says thise once and the world is going to end.


Get a life.


If the dimp these guys their followers with continue to follow them and then Dicky can really see the loss.

Jul 30, 2013 1:22PM
I remember every time Bob Grant got fired he took a vacation , when he returned he started back on another station
Jul 30, 2013 11:19AM
Talking heads that provide listeners a way to reaffirm their preconceived beliefs are always going to be popular. People watch biased news networks (FOX and MSNBC) not to learn new things but to hear people they know will agree with them. People dont like hearing logical arguments for both sides of an issue but how their side is 100% correct and the other side is 100% wrong. It is no wonder people like this can make so much money when their job is so easy. All they have to say is the rich are wonderful, the poor are horrible. Welfare for the rich is good but welfare for the poor is bad. Republicans are always right and Democrats are always wrong and they will continue to be popular for years to come.
Jul 30, 2013 2:55PM

Rush can broadcast from Mars, if anyone is listening.

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