Hill TV’s Krystal Ball lashed out Thursday at conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh after the talk radio gabber took to his show and falsely accused her of posing nude as a young teenager and posting the photos to social media.
During a recent broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show, the right-wing talker decided to reference Ball, who had unsuccessfully run for Congress in 2010. Towards the tail-end of Ball’s campaign that year, party photos of her in a racy Santa costume and her then-husband dressed as a reindeer with a dildo for a nose popped up on the internet.
According to Limbaugh’s recollection, however, these images were nude pictures of a teenaged Ball.
“Remember the name Krystal Ball with a K?” Limbaugh told his audience. “Some thought she was attractive. She was running for Congress, and she got elected, and some tweets came out.”
(Ball, again, did not win her election.)
“She posed nude when she was 14 or 15,” he continued. “She was outraged. ‘How dare you!’ I said, ‘What do you expect to happen? You Put a picture of yourself nude on Facebook or MySpace or, you know, My Butt, whatever it is. Somebody’s gonna find that stuff.’”
Limbaugh concluded by saying he believes some of that is going on to “blackmail” members of Congress and “Republicans can do this too” and may be doing it in “certain places.”
Ball, a former MSNBC host, fired back during the broadcast of her morning Hill TV show Rising.
“So, first of all, I did not pose nude when I was 14 or 15,” the 37-year-old noted. “Facebook and MySpace did not even exist when I was 14 or 15. I didn’t tweet to anything related to that.”
She explained that Limbaugh was likely referencing, in a “very bizarre way,” the party photos that emerged during her congressional run, adding that since we are in the “Trump age” Limbaugh probably felt a need to make this far more “salacious in order to titillate his audience.”
Ball went on to say that she decided against just ignoring Limbaugh since he has an audience of millions, pointing out that she felt the need to “correct the record” because she has a platform to call him out.
“I don’t want to feel like he can just slime whoever he wants and get away with it with no accountability,” she declared. “But if I did have some naked photos from when I was 14 or 15 or whenever, who frickin’ cares?! It’s not your job to be the moral police or to shame me or any other young woman who is out there who MAY have nude photos that come out!”
Ball reiterated her message on Twitter after the Rising broadcast aired, but this time uncensored.
“I didn’t want him to think he could just slime anyone with impunity. Most importantly though, if I did "pose nude" at 14, so fucking what?” Ball wrote. “Should women be barred from public service because they have bodies and sexuality?”
Interestingly, when the Ball controversy first landed in October 2010, Limbaugh opined on it. And he knew at that time that they weren’t nude images of a teenaged Ball.
“So, anyway, she’s 30 years old, and those pictures were four, five, six years ago?” Limbaugh said on-air. “I mean she’s running as a Democrat. I don’t understand the big deal anyway. I mean this stuff is résumé enhancement for Democrats. I don’t understand the controversy here at all.”