Social media reacts to death of Rush Limbaugh

Social media had widely mixed reactions to the death of Rush Limbaugh, the controversial far-right-wing talk radio host who passed away Wednesday at age 70 from lung cancer.

Still banned from social media, former President Donald Trump — who awarded the Medal of Freedom to Limbaugh during his final State of the Union speech in February last year — called Fox News shortly after Limbaugh’s death was announced, saying “He was a brave guy ... a fantastic man, a fantastic talent.”

Writing an opinion for Fox News, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia called Limbaugh “one of the conservative movement’s great heroic figures and a good friend.”

“His audience was powerful. I can tell you this from personal experience. When we ran the 1994 Contract with America, Republicans had been out of power in the house for 40 years. Rush’s help was absolutely vital to winning that election, communicating the issues to the country, rallying people, and helping key candidates win,” Gingrich wrote.

While many conservative voices praised and defended the late host as a patriot and American hero, liberal voices were more scathing and condemned Limbaugh as xenophobic and racist.