{{show_title_date || "Rush vs. O'Reilly on marriage equality, 3/28/13, 10:46 PM ET"}}

Rush vs. O’Reilly: Conservative pundits feud over marriage equality


Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh went after Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly Wednesday for saying same-sex marriage opponents don’t have a “compelling” argument other than “thumping the Bible.”

msnbc’s Lawrence O’Donnell spoke about the tense relationship between the “king and queen” of Republican media on Wednesday’s Rewrite segment. Their hostility is so strong that they typically refuse to acknowledge one another on the air, O’Donnell said of the two conservative pundits. But Limbaugh couldn’t resist ripping O’Reilly over a biblical reference he made on his show while condemning the argument against gay marriage.

On Tuesday night, O’Reilly agreed with guest Megyn Kelly and said that the “compelling argument is on the side of homosexuals.” Limbaugh then accused O’Reilly of marginalizing his own viewers–opponents of gay marriage–by calling them “Bible thumpers.”

“So how many of you who watch Fox are Bible thumpers?” Limbaugh asked after playing a clip of O’Reilly’s comments on the subject. “Do you think there are any Bible thumpers, quote, unquote, that watch Fox? Because last night you were sort of marginalized on The Factor as not having a compelling argument and just being a bunch of Bible thumpers.”

O’Donnell noted that O’Reilly has shifted on the issue, citing remarks he made in the past on the issue: “You can marry 18 people, you can marry a duck…You’ll be able to marry a goat–you mark my words!” Yet the conservative host slammed Bill Clinton and Barack Obama for their evolutions on marriage equality within the very same segment where he announced his own shift.

“You’re phony, Bill Clinton. You’re a phony. It is the same exact issue, same thing, all right? You signed it because you thought it was going to be popular. Now that it is not so popular, you’re against it. This is what sleazy politicians do,” O’Reilly said. “It is political and it is just awful.”

“It is just awful when people change their minds,” O’Donnell said. “Except of course when Bill O`Reilly does it.”