JEFFERSON CITY | Controversial radio host Rush Limbaugh made a surprise visit to the state Capitol on Monday to be inducted into the Hall of Famous Missourians.
Controversy has swirled around Limbaugh's induction for months, especially coming so soon after making comments about 30-year old law student Sandra Fluke after she testified in support of a requirement that health care companies provide coverage for contraception. The comments lost Limbaugh numerous corporate sponsors and provoked protests of his inclusion in the hall.
But Speaker Steve Tilley, a Perryville Republican, repeatedly defended the inclusion of Limbaugh, arguing in March that, "it’s not the ‘Hall of Universally Loved Missourians.'"
The ceremony today was unusual in that it was not announced until 20 minutes before it was scheduled to begin and was not open to the public. Only invited guests were allowed to attend.
The hall is in the third-floor rotunda of the Missouri Capitol. The group of bronze busts depicts prominent Missourians honored for their achievements and contributions to the state. Inductees are selected by the Missouri House Speaker, and the bronze busts are paid for by the Speaker’s Annual Golf Classic.
Limbaugh’s bust was made by Kansas City sculptor E. Spencer Schubert.
The other Missourians inducted in the hall this year were former slave Dred Scott and Negro League baseball great Buck O’Neil.