Trump on Hannity reveals he only befriended Rush Limbaugh ‘when I got word he was with us all the way

Adam WithnallThu, 18 February 2021, 5:30 am

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Former president Donald Trump appeared on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show late on Wednesday night, part of a media blitz of right-wing networks to talk about the death of Rush Limbaugh.

Limbaugh died on Wednesday more than a year after being diagnosed with late-stage lung cancer, his wife Kathryn announced on his radio show.

Discussing how he came to know Limbaugh, Mr Trump said he only approached the right-wing radio host when he was told he was guaranteed his support.

“I didn’t know him at all until I had gotten word from somebody that Rush was ‘with us all the way’ – you know, that we had this guy who was big on radio and… he was with us all the way. I got to know him after that,” the former president said.

Mr Trump said he went on to play “a lot of golf” with Limbaugh, and that he nicknamed him “the Bull”. “When he hit the ball, he hit it a long way,” he said.

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Limbaugh was a vocal champion of the Trump administration and was handed the presidential Medal of Freedom by the Republican on 4 February 2020, shortly after he received his stage four cancer diagnosis.

Hannity concluded the interview by telling Mr Trump he was “looking forward to hearing what your future plans are”, adding “we’re not going to do it tonight, obviously”.

Mr Trump replied: “Well, there’s a lot to talk about, and our country is a great place and we’re going to make it even greater, as the expression goes. But today is all about Rush, don’t you think? And what he left behind. He’ll never be forgotten. Big impact. Great guy.”

The former president has been relatively silent since leaving the White House on the 20 January, unable to use his preferred medium of Twitter and reportedly all the happier for it while in his self-imposed exile in Mar-a-Lago.

He returned with several media appearances on Wednesday to talk about Limbaugh, including on Newsmax and earlier again on Fox News.

Newsmax’s hosts did show show Hannity’s reticence to ask about matters beyond the death of the conservative DJ, however, and three times pressed Mr Trump on whether he plans to run again for president in 2024.

The Republican largely dodged the question, but at the third time of asking elaborated: “As far as ‘24 it is too early to say, but I see a lot of great polls out there, that’s for sure.”

And he added: “Well, we have tremendous support. I won’t say yet, but we have tremendous support.”