Did Gary Johnson get his ‘shovel-ready’ line from Rush Limbaugh?

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor
Font Size:

Charles Krauthammer called it the line of the night during his post-debate analysis on Fox News, but it turns out that Gary Johnson’s joke about “shovel-ready” projects might have come from Rush Limbaugh.

On Thursday’s show, Limbaugh joked: “My dogs have created more shovel-ready work than Obama has (chuckling) just this week alone.”

During the debate Johnson said: “My next-door neighbor’s two dogs have created more shovelready projects than this president…”

The line was a hit. As Politico’s Alexander Burns noted, “There were no Google analytics available at press time to illustrate whether viewers liked the joke, but the audience cheered.”

Of course, it’s highly likely this is a line that has been around a while; Limbaugh likely didn’t “invent” it. Still, it was perhaps the moment of the night, and one wonders if Limbaugh might have inspired it.

Update: Yahoo!’s Chris Moody reports Johnson got his ‘dog poop’ line, via text message, from a friend who used to write for Jay Leno. After the debate, Johnson Tweeted: “Re: the dogs, I understand Rush Limbaugh made the same point. Credit to Rush for a great and very true line.”

Matt K. Lewis