New Highs and Lows for Rush Limbaugh

updated 10/03/2003 at 12:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/03/2003 10:48AM

Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh, who resigned from his "Sunday NFL Countdown" ESPN perch after his comments about Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb drew a blitz of criticism last weekend, is refusing to apologize for his remarks, reports the Associated Press.

Meanwhile, authorities are confirming that he is being investigated for allegedly buying prescription drugs illegally, the news service reports.

Limbaugh, 52, said before Sunday's match between the Eagles and the Buffalo Bills that the media wanted McNabb to succeed because he is black. His words prompted criticism from McNabb himself, former NFL quarterback Warren Moon, and several Democratic presidential candidates. Limbaugh's statement of resignation on Wednesday did not include an outright apology to McNabb.

As for the drug-related allegations, which were first reported in the National Enquirer and then confirmed by New York's Daily News and CNN, the AP reports that Limbaugh is being investigated by the Palm Beach County state attorney's office.

Premiere Radio Networks, which syndicates the "Rush Limbaugh Show" to more than 650 markets, issued a statement from Limbaugh on Thursday saying: "I am unaware of any investigation by any authority involving me. No government representative has contacted me directly or indirectly. If my assistance is required, I will, of course, cooperate fully."

This week, while Limbaugh was publicly defending his remarks about McNabb, he did not address the drug investigation reports.

The source for the Enquirer story was Wilma Cline, who told the tabloid that she became Limbaugh's drug connection after working as his maid. She said Limbaugh had abused OxyContin and other painkillers, such as Hydrocodone and Lorcet.

As the Daily News recapped, OxyContin is known as "hillbilly heroin" thanks to its popularity in rural areas. Articles in the New York Times Magazine and elsewhere have labeled the drug highly addictive and noted that in some cases, use of it can be fatal.

Ed Shohat, a Miami lawyer for Cline and her husband, told AP on Thursday: "The Clines stand by the story." Shohat said there would be no further comment from him or his clients.

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