Paul: Limbaugh apologized for personal gain

(CBS News) Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul said an apology by conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh to Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke for calling her a "slut" and a "prostitute" was not sincere, and was made only because it best served Limbaugh.

On CBS News' "Face the Nation," the Texas congressman told host Bob Schieffer that Limbaugh's apology "was in his best interest."

"He's doing it because some people were taking their advertisements off of his program. It was his bottom line he was concerned about," Paul said.

Paul referred to three companies that pulled advertisements from Limbaugh's show following incendiary remarks Limbaugh made about Fluke for testifying before a mock Congressional committee in favor of free contraception insurance coverage at Georgetown, a Jesuit university. [One company's spokesman said that Limbaugh's comments "do not align [with] our values." Another pulled out "Due to continued inflammatory comments - along with valuable feedback from clients and team members" about the remarks.]

"I don't think he's very apologetic," Paul said. "It's in his best interest, that's why he did it."

Although Paul disagreed with Limbaugh's remarks and called them "over the top," he said the government should not mandate that insurance companies provide contraception coverage.

"This is philosophically and politically important because, does the government have a mandate to tell insurance (companies) what to give?" Paul asked, and then responded to his own question: "So they're saying that the insurance companies should give everybody free birth control pill, that strikes me as rather odd."

Paul told Schieffer that the problem is not about social issues but about the government. "It's this mandate, this is an obsession with Obama on mandating," Paul said, then moving on to critique the Republicans as well. "Of course the Republicans aren't a whole lot better on this, either," he said, without specifying to what policy he was referring.

However, Paul was specific in his attack against former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum and his support (as Senator) for Planned Parenthood dollars in a government funding bill.

"He pretends to be the champion of social values," Paul told Schieffer. "That to me is rather bizarre, and that's why I call him a fake conservative."

  • Leigh Ann Caldwell On Twitter»

    Leigh Ann Caldwell is a political reporter for CBSNews.com.

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