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Eric Cantor takes on Rush Limbaugh, harsh GOP rhetoric

November 6, 2009 |  3:18 pm

Can it be? Another Republican leader taking on Rush Limbaugh? Apparently so. And that leader is Virginia’s Eric Cantor, the second-highest-ranking GOP member in the House.

Eric Cantor But first a little history. Earlier this year Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee, labeled Limbaugh’s talk show “incendiary” and “ugly.” After Limbaugh and his many listeners expressed their displeasure, Steele apologized--and pretty quickly, too.

Which makes today’s comments by Cantor all the more interesting. In a segment on “Political Capital with Al Hunt” being aired today, he touches on Limbaugh comments that have been, shall we say, less than inclusionary.

He also suggested that harsh rhetoric from party members might harm the GOP in the long run:

"The Republican Party in its root is a party of inclusion and we ought to be promoting that and making sure that voices are heard."

This bit of news comes from Bloomberg, in an article about Cantor's comments on the show, which airs on Bloomberg Television. As the article states:

"His comments about Limbaugh and other members of his party put him at odds with some party leaders. Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee, also took issue with Limbaugh’s comments, then relented.

"Cantor was critical of Republicans such as Representative Virginia Foxx of North Carolina, who called the Democratic health plan a greater threat to America than terrorists and Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who took fellow Republican Olympia Snowe to task for voting with Democrats. Pawlenty later said the Maine senator is 'absolutely welcome' in the party."

Follow this link for Bloomberg's full report.

-- Steve Padilla

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Photo: Eric Cantor. Credit: Associated Press