I understand by the president uh the former president of the united states, who you know, gave the presidential medal of freedom uh in 2020 at the state of the union address to rush limbaugh. President trump. Are you with me? I am, and it was a great honor to do so when we gave the uh medal of freedom. It was something special. It was an incredible night uh we gave it during the state of the union address and it was especially half the room. Half the room went crazy at the other half the room, they knew they knew, he should get it, but it was special and he was special. Mr president, you know thank you for joining us. When was the last time you spoke with rush, limbaugh, uh, three or four days ago, i’d. Call him just to find out. You know his. His fight was very, very courageous and he was very, very sick, and you know from diagnosis on. It was just something that was not going to be beaten, but you wouldn’t know it, and he is married to an incredible woman, catherine who really every time i spoke to him. He would tell me how great she was. She took such great care. He was very brave, i mean he in theory could have been gone four months ago. Really he just he was fighting till the very end. He was a fighter while you were in the white house. How did you view how he either carried on your message or chose to agree or disagree with the policies you had as commander in chief? Well? First of all, you know you just had sean on john hannity.
He was incredible and sean would say there is nobody like rush. Sean was the first to say that he i i used to say. Well, what do you think someday and he’d say he’s? He replaced the book russia’s irreplaceable, unique. He had an audience that was massive and you know he could do something bill and uh. He would. He would get up in the show and would just talk. He wouldn’t take phone calls where you know people would call in every two minutes and that’s sort of easy to do. He would just talk for two hours and three hours, just talk and that’s, not an easy thing to do, and i once asked him i said: do you study for the show or – and he said actually i studied very hard which which a little bit harris that A little bit surprised me, but but he was a fantastic man, a fantastic talent and people, whether they loved him or not. They respected him. They really did president trump. If you would stay with us for just about a minute and a half or maybe a little longer, we want to show the day that you gave him the presidential medal of freedom. Let’S watch that together and then i have a follow up question on the flip side: okay and rush in recognition of all that you have done for our nation, the millions of people a day that you speak to and that you inspire and all of the incredible Work that you have done for charity, i am proud to announce tonight that you will be receiving our country’s highest civilian honor, the presidential medal of freedom.
I will now ask the first lady of the united states to present you with the honor. Please oh rush and catherine, congratulations and if you are just tuning in, we are joined by president number 45. Former president donald j trump, and you saw him there, along with the first lady, awarding rush limbaugh, who has left us today. The presidential medal of freedom and president trump, i have always wondered just seeing the look of surprise on russia’s, face what he knew about that moment and what you learned that he was going through in that moment after he is succumbed to tears, and i was curious. What did he know was coming, so i did tell him beforehand, because we didn’t have the uh really the the power of not doing it. You know rush was very sick at the time he was at a hospital in boston, and i didn’t want to do the surprise thing uh. I wish i wish i could have done that, but we really didn’t have that uh, that that power of doing it because he had it – was a very difficult thing for him to come into washington from where he was and he did it and there was questions As to whether or not he was just a very brave guy, he was amazing and he came in and it was, as he told me, it was the greatest honor of his life and everybody in the room uh.
You know you’re talking about the republicans and the democrats, yet half of that room went crazy. You remember the evening. Well, i’m sure it was very unique moment yeah in our country’s history, in a sense because of who russia is but half what is absolutely crazy. The other half sat totally dead silent, but a hundred percent of that room respected rush. It was a unique guy and he was a. He became a friend of mine. You know i didn’t know rush at all. I had essentially never met rush and then, when we came down the escalator, he liked my rather controversial speech. I made that speech. That was a little bit on the controversial side and he loved it and he was without ever having met him or talked to him or you know, had lunch with him and asked he was with me right from the beginning, and he liked what i said, and He agreed with what i said, and he was just a great gentleman, great great man, mr president, that is such fascinating detail that you’re giving mr president about how you didn’t really know him all that. Well, yet he became someone who carried your message. Uh. You know i’m i’m curious to know what you wanted him to know, and maybe you got to tell him in the last three or four days that you spoke about the difference that he made for you. Well, i think he did and i’ve heard as many as ‘ million people.
You know that’s an audience that you don’t hear about anymore and i heard ‘ million people and i don’t know if you remember uh, maybe three or four months ago i did his show and i heard they had a tremendous audience and it lasted for like a Long time the interview was like an hour and it just went right through and it was his questions were fascinating. I think the show was fascinating. He he had a way of uh. He had an insight that few people have just few people have even really good ones, really pros in your business and by the way you two are some great combination you and bill together, harris that’s, a great combination that that does incredibly well. We thank you for it. We really thank you both for it, but he was a very unique guy and uh. He had tremendous insight. He got it, he really got. He was very street smart in a sense and uh. A lot of people wouldn’t know, but he was very, very street smart. He really got it. Mr president, we probably have a hundred questions for you, but so many of them are not appropriate for this venue. So we’ll keep it on this topic. For now – and we appreciate your time today – uh perhaps that street smarts came from growing up in the midwest in cape girardeau and missouri along the mississippi river. Later he went on to work for the kansas city royals and the pittsburgh pirates before he returned to his attention full time to radio in sacramento california.
But you just said something a moment ago and harris picked up on it. Just tell us more about how you two got to know each other i’m thinking of 2015, this summer 17 candidates on a stage in cleveland, at what point did he concede that you were the guy and how did that come about? Well, i got a call from a friend of mine who was a big rush fan and he said rush loves you. I said i don’t see that you know i hadn’t heard i’m not able to listen to the radio during the afternoon too much you’re on the trail and you’re making speeches or doing whatever you’re doing. I was actually making speeches and running a business. I was doing both of it simultaneously right and uh. He just told me that, and then all of a sudden i started getting a little transcript stuff. I would try to listen every once in a while. He was there right from the beginning and it was incredible and then i i guess i called him just to thank him and we developed just some very good friendship. We played golf together a little bit. He was a very strong guy, physically, very strong hit. The ball a long way he was uh, he was uh. I i guess the reason. I asked that question you think about about five years ago. You don’t strike me as his kind of guy back then what changed? Well, i don’t know you know you never know about people.
I like some people that nobody would think. I like and i’ll dislike some people that everybody would say. Oh that’s that’s a natural. We know we all know about that. Right, uh. I mean you never know who you like and who you don’t like or or you know where it all ends up, but right from the beginning he was so great and you know – and i thought i have a a very beautiful week this i always seem to Like people that, like me, okay, you know it’s much easier when they don’t like me, i tend not to go for them, so much so call that a sprint or call that a weakness but but that’s the way it is but rush was so gracious and so Great so then, over a period of time i got to know him and uh he loved this country. He loved the country, he loved his wife and his family and he loved his fans. His his audience, which was, i think, maybe the biggest ever there’s, never been anything like it. You know when sean says irreplaceable. He really means it so he’s irreplaceable. What did he share? You know i’m curious. Mr, mr president, yes go ahead, harris i i’m pretty i’m curious to know if he gave you a note or two or if he had some advice for you at any point along the way. So he was again, it was very early because you know that famous escalator ride was the very beginning and he was one of the people.
That said we were going to win. He thought we were going to win uh. I don’t think it was necessarily the reason he was so you know gracious so early, but but he thought we were going to win uh. He just had an incredible instinct for politics and he had an incredible instinct for life. I mean he he was just so. I just you know i walked into a room and there’s a lot of people in the room and they’re all very sad to see people that you wouldn’t even think about, like with respect to rush, but they’re, very sad to see that rush passed away. He’S. Really. He is a legend, he really is there aren’t too many legends around, but he was uh. He is a legend and to those people that listen to him every day like it was like a religious experience for a lot of people. I mean his fans uh.