Romney on Rush: 'Not the Language I Would Have Used'

CLEVELAND - Mitt Romney responded for the first time this evening to comments made by Rush Limbaugh in which he referred to a college student as a "slut," saying that it's "not the language" he would have used.

"I'll just say this, which is, it's not the language I would have used. I'm focusing on the issues I think are significant in the country today, and that's why I'm here talking about jobs and Ohio," Romney said to reporters on a rope line after a rally at Cleveland State University.

Romney did not address the controversy while speaking to the crowd in Cleveland, or during an appearance in Washington State earlier in the day.

The incendiary talk show host made headlines this week after he referred to Georgetown University law school student Sandra Fluke as a "slut" and a "prostitute" after she testified before Congress, arguing in favor of employers' covering birth control for all women, even if the institution or employer has religious objections. The story has since ballooned; Fluke received a phone call of support from President Obama.

"He expressed support for me," Fluke said in an interview with ABC News Friday. "And concern for me personally and how I was handling the things that had been said about me, and [President Obama] thanked me for speaking out and for expressing the concerns of so many women."

Stephanie Cutter, the deputy campaign manager for President Obama, tweeted shortly after Romney's comments, "Now, that's leadership."