America's two most highly rated conservative talk personalities, Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, might take a major hit this year as Cumulus Media, the country's second largest broadcaster reportedly plans on dropping their shows from its stations at the end of the year.
According to a report in POLITICO, Cumulus decided not to renew contracts with Hannity and Limbaugh after negotiations with Premiere Networks, a division of Clear Channel which distributes the shows of the conservative hosts, broke down over money.
The two parties, known as hardline dealmakers, reportedly disagreed on the cost of the distribution rights according to a Politico source. The report notes that while the parties have disagreed on issues before, the current impasse appears unlikely to be settled, and if it isn't, would see the hit shows dropped from more than 40 Cumulus channels in major media markets across the United States.
When contacted about the report, Cumulus declined speaking on the matter with Politico.
"Cumulus is not in a position to comment about negotiations with talent under contract, no matter what the rumor of the day might be," a spokesperson for the company told POLITICO.
The company is said to be looking to existing programs hosted by talent like Mike Huckabee, Mark Levin and Michael Savage to fill the vacuum created by the fallout from the negotiations.
In a response to the report on Monday, however, Rush Limbaugh disputed the report.
"I want to get something out of the way here at the top. There was another Politico story that ran last night about this program and the radio stations that it is on, and is going to be on, in the future. And someday, someday I am looking so forward to being able to detail all of this for you, but suffice it to say nothing is gonna happen that you will notice. Nothing is going to change," said Limbaugh.
"You are gonna be able to get this radio program on as many, if not more, radio stations down the road than it's on now, and what you're being treated to is just a public business negotiation. Negotiations have been taken public by one side of this. I thought it was done. I thought it was over with. And, folks, I would love ... I mean, I love inside baseball stuff, and I would love to pass this on, but I must use proper business restraint here … I just want to assure you, everything's cool, and, as always, what's on the table for this program is growth," he added.