RUSH: John in Blue Springs, Missouri, outside Kansas City, hello.
CALLER: Rush, I have a question for you.
CALLER: Are you related to Stephen N. Limbaugh, Missouri Supreme Court justice?
RUSH: I cannot say.
CALLER: You cannot say?
RUSH: No, in the interests of protecting the reputations and images of anyone in this country named Limbaugh, I disavow being related to any of them.
CALLER: Well, I know your brother David quite well through all of his —
RUSH: I don’t have a brother. That’s a rumor, that’s a myth.
RUSH: I — I’m — I — just — No! Anybody else out there named Limbaugh is pure coincidence. They have nothing to do with me. I’m not going to sit here and allow my supposed relationship to that to end up destroying them.
CALLER: Well, if you are related to Stephen Limbaugh let me just say that he’s the only person on the Missouri Supreme Court who has a fully functioning brain.
RUSH: Well, in that case he is my cousin.
CALLER: (laughing) Oh, okay!
RUSH: (laughing) No, my uncle is federal judge in St. Louis and it’s his son Stephen, Jr., who is my cousin who used to be the chief judge of the Missouri Supreme Court. It’s a rotating position. He was the sole vote, I forget the —
CALLER: It was the voter bill that we had here before the election. He was the dissenting vote. I think everybody was probably feeling sorry for Michael J. Fox on the Supreme Court then, so…
RUSH: (Laughing) I don’t think that had anything to do with it. This is a voter ID bill and everybody knows who Michael Fox is. He can vote anywhere as a Democrat. He can vote in any precinct he wants.
CALLER: With that track record, I’m sure they come up with some pretty bad decisions. That’s for sure.
RUSH. All right. Well, they’re all tremendous people.
CALLER: Yes, they are.
RUSH: A big family Christmas again. I had them all here for Thanksgiving. I haven’t spoken about this because of privacy. I had 50 people here. The whole family got together the first time in a long time. Only five couldn’t make it. They had to work. The others were here. We had little kids all over the place, and it was amazing, too, folks. No Cheerios on the wall. No milk spilled at breakfast. We had infants. We had two-year-olds and six-year-olds. You know infants. If they don’t like what you serve them, they can just throw it on the floor, and it didn’t happen. It was just a tremendous time. For four days they were all here. Oh, yeah, I played with the kids! I’ve got a game room arcade that they really wanted to spend most of their time in, video games and this sort of stuff. I’m not an idiot. It’s in another little building on the property. So they were over there. Oh, yeah, they were in the theater watching movies and so forth, the Disney Channel and this kind of thing. Yeah, it was fabulous. It could not have been greater, just could not have gone better, had a great time, and there will be a significant number getting together over the weekend in Missouri for Christmas as well, although I’m not announcing in public whether I’m going or not so as to spare those who are there (laughing) any hassle. But yep, Steve, Jr., is my cousin. Steve, Sr.’s father is a judge in St. Louis.
RUSH: Mark in Plymouth, Michigan, hello, sir, and welcome to the EIB Network.
CALLER: Merry Christmas, Rush!
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: I was just curious about the origins of your name. Is Rush a nickname? Is it your real name, and how did you get the name “Rush”?
RUSH: You’re very shrewd. You are the first person to ask if it was a nickname. My actual name is Mustapha.
CALLER: (pause) Mustapha?
RUSH: Mustapha Sahib Hudson Limbaugh.
RUSH: No, actually I’m Rush H. Limbaugh III. That is not a nickname. My grandfather was, of course, the first. My father was Junior. There’s a long explanation for this that has to do with the geographic area in which the family came from in North Carolina. The real short answer to it is that it is one of my grandfather’s aunt’s maiden name. I think her name was Edna Rush or something, and they just wanted to keep that name alive, and so they named my grandfather “Rush,” and the other part of it is that the middle name is Hudson, and it is the “Rush Hudson” that is a geographical area of North Carolina or it might be Virginia, I forget which. That was a phrase that was used to describe a roaring brook, believe it or not (a stream of water, for those of you in Rio Linda) and so the combination of the two is what led to the name, but it is not a nickname.
I was never able to use my real name on the radio when I started, because when I went to Pittsburgh in 1971, I was 20, and I worked for an ABC owned and operated rock ‘n’ roll station, and they said, “You can’t use your real name. People are going to think you have a lisp and can’t say ‘Russ.’ Nobody’s ever had the name Rush.” So they had a book of approved names at ABC and I had to go through the book and pick a name. As long as it wasn’t in the Pittsburgh phone book, I could use it. So I found “Jeff Christie,” and I once went to a numerologist just for the fun of it. A bunch of us got together on a Friday and went to a numerologist. She did a reading said, “You know what? You are never going to amount to a hill of beans ’til you start using your real name, never going to happen,” and I didn’t start using my real name until 1984 on the radio, and that’s when everything started happening. (laughing) She was right. I still don’t believe in numerology, though.