Barbara Walters recently included influential pundit Rush Limbaugh as one of her 10 most fascinating people of the year. The show aired December 4, on the ABC network.
Watch Barbara Walters' Rush Limbaugh interview
Rush mentioned the appearance on his radio program, commenting particularly on how the media have pounced on statements he made during the interview.
Rush's Interview with Barbara Walters Fascinates the Drive-By Media
Barbara Walters has her Ten Most Fascinating People of the Year special... I am one of the ten. I didn't realize this. The first time she did this show in 1993, I was one of the twelve. There were twelve most fascinating then, and since then it's been reduced to ten.
It is a interesting interview because Rush rarely grants TV interviews, largely because his considerable influence is not dependent on TV exposure or mainstream acceptance.
Rush expressed why he prefers his radio format to TV:
Recap: The Barbara Walters Interview
...one of the reasons, ladies and gentlemen, I am not enthusiastic about television is that it drives me nuts getting feedback every time I'm on television. When I had my own show, I would go home, I'd check the e-mail, whatever, and nobody was ever satisfied. Everybody always had a complaint. I never get complaints about this radio show. I never have people say, "What you shoulda said was... and why did you let 'em ask that? You shoulda thrown it right back in their face." I said, "What's the point? What's the point?" Nobody is ever satisfied with television because all that matters is how you look and nothing else matters. Nobody remembers what anybody ever says on television. I give you Obama. It's how you look; it's how you come off.
Eric Boehlert on the Huffington Post comments how Rush has managed a warm relationship with the "liberal media" he often famously derides:
Of course Barbara Walters Thinks Rush Limbaugh Is "Fascinating"
...those were complete failures and only highlighted Limbaugh's growing political irrelevance. But for celebrity journalists like Walters, the Limbaugh script was written long ago--he's fascinating. Anxious for his right-wing seal of approval (and spooked by his liberal bias charges), the mainstream press corps has for years treated Limbaugh with undeserved respect, worked to soften his radical edges, and presented him as simply a partisan pundit.