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September 15th, 2009
07:54 PM ET

House votes to admonish Wilson for 'you lie' remark

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The House of Representatives on Tuesday formally admonished Republican Rep. Joe Wilson for shouting "you lie" during President Obama's speech to a joint session of Congress last week.

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Rep. Joe Wilson, R-South Carolina, shouts "You lie!" during President Obama's speech Wednesday night."]

The House passed a resolution of disapproval on a 240-179 vote that was mostly along party lines, reflecting the Democratic majority in the chamber. Twelve Democrats voted "no," while seven Republicans voted for the measure. Five representatives, all Democrats, voted "present."

According to the Office of the House Historian, it was the first time in its 220-year history that the House has disciplined a member for speaking out during a presidential speech in the chamber to a joint session of Congress.

During debate on the resolution, Wilson called the measure a waste of time and failed to apologize to the chamber, as demanded by House Democrats.

"When we are done here today, we will not have taken any further steps toward helping" the nation deal with urgent challenges, said Wilson, of South Carolina. "It is time that we move forward and get back to work for the American people." Watch House members debate the resolution Video

Read the full story »

Filed under: Politics
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. cheryl

    Republican... Democrat... Green... Whig... party lines don't matter here... NO President should ever be treated with the disrespect that Wilson has shown. I am saddened and embarassed that we live in such a racist nation.

    Besides, it looks like Scot Wheeler needs to worry more about his education and inability to spell rather than posting on an issue that he probably doesn't even understand.... he was most likley part of Bush's no child left behind act... him and Bush were obviously both left behind when it comes to education.

    "resalution on thier dissaprovale af a comment."... nice!

    September 16, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  2. Angelle

    By Stephanie:

    "The idea that people who disagree with President Obama’s policies are “racist” is ridiculous. I’m sure there is a small percentage of people who actually are but, for the most part, people are extremely concerned about over-spending and big government. It has absolutely nothing to do with the color of someone’s skin. Kayne West got up and humiliated a white woman to stand up for a black woman and no one is calling him racist. It appears to be a double-standard and one that is being used unfairly to people who legitimately disagree with what is currently going on in the government."

    I AGREE 100%

    September 16, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  3. scot

    Wendell J. Blair – Even while you busily accuse others of racism, you reveal that it is you yourself who is the racist. Your words "I would not expect white America to understand" are typical of individuals who play the race card at the drop of a hat when they realise they can't defend the indefensivable. "White America" is getting sick and tired of being the last group in America that it's okay to be prejudice towards. By your words you are guilty of undoing decades of hard work to establish equality and eliminate predjudice. The incivility and "racism" you see these days are backlash against your phony indignation. If you want respect, give it others and stick to debating the issues on their own merit.

    September 16, 2009 at 1:46 pm |
  4. Wally

    These politicians voting on this resolution are the biggest hypocrites! Many Democrats violated house rules when they booed President Bush during a State of the Union speech. Harry Reid also called Pres. Bush a loser in front of a group of school children. Nancy Pelosi has called Pres. Bush a liar on several occasions. This was nothing but a politically calulated move. And any time someone disagrees with Pres. Obama they are called a racist or told their disagreement may lead to racial hatred. I'll tell you this much, I was proud to see this great nation elect a person of color, but I wished it was someone more closely aligned to my policy positions. Now, after seeing the deplorable actions on the part of the left constantly injecting race whenever anyone disagrees, I think this nation is being torn apart when it comes to race. It really pisses me off! These Dem pols are using race to distract from debate and I think they are setting race relations back more than a decade. There's been no racial healing under this President.

    September 16, 2009 at 9:55 am |
  5. Elaine Durman

    This week we are witnessing a rash of rude behavior by public figures. Serena Williams, Kanye West and Republican Congressman Joe Wilson have opened their mouths and inserted their feet figuratively. Why, I ask, are we as a nation surprised by this behavior? Over the past fifteen to twenty years, we have seen common courtesy being replaced by personal entitlement.
    Cell phones are a prime example of this. Who hasn’t been irritated by someone else’s cell phone going off at inappropriate times and/or places. We have become a cellular society that can’t miss a call. At every business meeting I’ve attended, the first point of direction to the attendees is to turn off your cell phones. Yet, inevitably, someone’s cell starts ringing. With the advent of texting and teenage addiction to cell phones, teachers are being challenged by physical withdrawal symptoms if they dare reprimand inattention in classrooms by taking away the phones.
    Serena Williams is a professional. I would expect that she should know when to keep her mouth shut and her emotions in check. We can attribute bad behavior to the “heat of the moment”, but by this time in her career she should be seasoned in accepting the judge’s rulings. Her explosive reactions only hurt herself, but by looking at the larger picture of Serena being a role model for young girls who idolize her as a tennis player her behavior presents a very negative image.
    Kanye West’s behavior at the VMA awards again shows his own ego crossing the line by upstaging Taylor Swift. No one cares what Kanye West thinks. His inappropriate, untimely outburst of his own personal opinion only made him look like a fool. His apologetic humility with Jay Leno was hollow without an attempt to actually reach out to Ms. Swift. His only remorse is linked to the effect his actions will have on his own career and pocketbook.
    Congress has voted to reprimand Joe Wilson for calling the President a liar. Again, the action was inappropriate in timing. Congressman Wilson should know better than to disrupt a public event by expressing negative reactionary comments against the President at a public forum. Even though many people will agree with his assessment, the point remains that he was a naughty boy who should have learned by now that common courtesy dictates that you keep your comments to yourself until you’re asked for your reactions. What chaps even more than his inappropriate behavior is the reaction of Congress. To take up time and the expense incurred to slap Congressman Wilson’s hand was even more appalling. I find it reprehensible that Congress found this issue worth inflating into another flagrant expense against the tax payers.
    What these three examples have in common for me is the coming of age of a generation that has personalized its individual importance above that of the rest of humanity. We have raised our children to not only believe that they are special, but that they can speak out without consideration for others. We have become an impolite society. There is a time and a place to voice our personal opinions, just as there is a time and place to use cell phones. There is a responsibility at stake here; the responsibility for your actions. Serena Williams will pay her fine. Kanye West will probably lose fans. Joe Wilson will be re-elected for giving voice to a popular opinion and propagating future bad behaviors by Congress.

    September 16, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  6. Uwe Frank Heinrich

    When I first came to this wonderful country I was always impressed how people from different political orientation summond behind their new President. My freind Richie, who did not vote for a certain President at that time answered my question: "He is the President of all Americans and I respect and support him now." I said to myself "I have come to the right place".
    Mr. Wilson's outburst just materialised his real political background and affiliation to racistic groups. He just brought tea party mentality to the House and he and alikes certainly hope that the process of dismantling this President will be accelerated to a new, final level. This has nothing
    to do with democratic rights but with demagogic behavior. These poeple are so eager to compare Obama with Hitler. It is the other way around, because Hitler was yelling at democratic representatives in the German parliament, just like Mr. Wilson, until the democratic system collapsed.
    That is exactly the goal of the Wilsons and their likes. God help America!

    September 16, 2009 at 9:32 am |
  7. Wendell J. BLAIR

    It is so very easy for those who have never directly been affected by racism to to call the House action (exposure) of this man "a waste of time". Please will some one in the media tell me the last time an elected governmental official interupted the President of the United States in manner like this during a nationally televised speech to the nation and perhaps to many parts of the world. It's not his diagreement to the President's policy that is racially motivated. It's the fact that he feels he has the right to address this COMMANDER IN CHIEF in that manner. And for ths man to have the audacity to say, 'he's apologized once and that's enough" further reflects the pompous attitude of someone who for some mythical reason believes himself to be superior to this COMMANDER IN CHIEF.

    I would not expect white America to understand, recognize nor admit the racist foundation of this level of disrepect having never been the victims of racism in this country. Former President Carter's statements do not reflect the real magnitude of the problem that exists in this country . Ultimately, the media will not cover this reality beyond today in order to support 1)of such major disappointments as Barney Frank and the Democratic Congress, 2) the "master race" and those who cling to the myth of their supremacy and 3) the myth that will insure our complacency e.g.the election proves we've overcome.

    Coincidently, this seems a lot like the 1950'-60's when the likes of Strom Thurmond, Lester Maddox, Strom Thurmond and Bull Connor ruled the south. As long as whites up north ignored the problem, then in their minds it did not exist. This bolstered their arrogance toward the Kennedys and their racial ideology to flourish and go unchecked.

    If you are not part of the are part of the problem. Afro Americans, you better recognize what's really going on in this country...The foundation of racism (which is the belief by white America that Afro Americans should not have anything which they themselves do not) remains fully intact. And, as it has throughout history, that foundation becomes stronger during hard economic times. Whether it manifests itself at a town hall meeting, a Sarah Palin rally or now in the halls of Congress. times

    September 16, 2009 at 9:23 am |
  8. Jane

    Yes, Mr. Wilson should have appoligized. This can be made into something political but shouldn't. It's about decency and respect and proper manners used in a formal gathering of Congress to hear the President speak. This is a terrible prcedent to set if we accepct that he "had done enough appololgizing" after calling and speaking to a staff member at the White House because "they told me to call".
    I taught in public school for 30 years and children should be and are taught to respect the President. Our class always wrote the President after he took office no matter what party had won. Tthe President is the
    leader of all America.

    September 16, 2009 at 9:04 am |
  9. Richard Ahern

    When Kanye disrespected Taylor,no charges of racism were mentioned.If a white person had done the same thing to black person,the air waves would be filled with racism charges. When a congressman says "you lie", the media gives air time to anyone who declares it was racially motivated.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:45 am |
  10. Robert, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

    I think the news media is partially responsible for the extreme degree of vitriolic hate and anger that is overflowing these days. They always find the worst things and repeat them ad-nauseum. And more importantly they ignore the reasonable things they should be concentrating on that would help people understand the truth in more depth.

    Take President Obama’s address to Congress – CNN played Rep. Joe Wilson’s shout-out 10 to 20 times an hour, but never once played a single other line from the president’s speech.

    This encourages the most extreme of the radicals because they know that they will dominate the airways if they can just do or say something more extreme than anyone else.

    So in effect you’ve helped Wilson to trump a large part of President Obama’s speech. Is that what you really want to do?

    Like President Obama says we really need thoughtful responsibility from all sides. Please replace most of those repeats with more in depth exploration of the issues.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:45 am |
  11. Cossandra Lemon

    That was so disrespectful. Now the Reps. that spoke on the House floor yesterday all say they need to be working on the issues of the people but none of them wants to get on board. When they were in power they did the same thing and it don't feel so good to be on the other end of the stick. But they get on TV and say all kinds of things about the President it is sad that things are this way in the USA. God Help Us.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:22 am |
  12. bj

    While I do agree that Congress has much more pressing issues, this must be addressed. The comment in it's self was not as severe as to WHERE AND WHEN it was said. It's pretty clear Wilson had his "OWN AGENDA" to push and did so, using a unprofessional attitude on the Worlds largest stage. What"s next Wilson?? Try professionalism and Respect! And next time buy your own "AIR TIME".

    September 16, 2009 at 8:18 am |
  13. Denis

    Hey Eva, what about all the politicans who called President Bush every name in the book? The fact that you think this is the kind of thing congress should be doing, the most important thing is a travesty. Where were all you people for the last 8 years? Did any of you object to the tirades and disrespect President Bush had to endure? That is the trouble with the liberal mindset. No consistency. Keep pushing with your labeling of people and misinformation. Keep it up. The protest in D.C. saturday is just the beginning. Real racism and name calling is ingrained in the liberal mindset. Real corruption is called the democrat party. If the media does its job, reporting ALL the news, you may one day be enlightened.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:17 am |
  14. PJ

    Not only was Mr. Wilson disrespectful of and rude toward President Obama, but he broke a House rule and for that the House passed a resolution of disapproval. Mr. Wilson wasted the time of the members of Congress; by not apologizing, he forced the waste of time.

    Mr. Wilson certainly took no "further steps toward helping” the nation deal with urgent challenges. He took time away from the important issues of the day to belie his apology by making a video that capitalized on his childish outburst to raise money for his campaign.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:06 am |
  15. Karen

    The number of people just being rude and disrespectful is getting ridiculous. If we cannot expect polite respectful actions from our elected officials how can we expect it from others. I am glad that the resolution went through, if not, it would just open up doors for more politicians (both sides) to continue the trend of disrespect. Too many Americans are acting inappropriately (politics, sports, music, etc).

    September 16, 2009 at 8:06 am |
  16. Donna Whitehead

    As a recently retired school teacher, I am reminded of the many times that "teachable moments" appear that we did not expect to encounter. Joe Wilson was a member of a governing body that held a certain amount of decorum and respect for the traditions of American government. There are many opportunities to teach and model respect in education. Children, young and old, learn that their behaviors must be appropriate to the occasion. Even though Joe Wilson apologized for his outburst, he chose to capitalize on his sudden notoriety rather than to let the incident fade. The form of rebuke was the least punitive that could have been chosen, but it allowed the house to seize a "teachable moment" that allows others to learn from. It even gives educators who use current events and government in their classrooms to point out, once again, that behaviors must be appropriate to the occasion. I have seen too many role models walk away from teachable moments. Even though the process took some time away from the business at hand, it was taking the time to remind everyone that civility in governing is what separates us from many others.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:06 am |
  17. scot

    The hypocrasy of the dems makes me sick. This is the party that suckered so many undecideds into believing they were going to lead with the most bipartisan effort ever. For eight years they villified Bush and his administration but, now, THIS IS DIFFERENT. The message is, don't do to us what we did to you, or you're a racist.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:04 am |
  18. Margaret Canniff

    Of course Congress should reprimand Wilson! And yes it does have REAL consequences! It is his peers "calling him out" for "unsportsmanlike" conduct! It's telling him, in unison, he is responsible for his actions. Let's get back to accepting responsibility for our actions. He sure hasn't. He apologized to the President,(sort of), refused to apologize to his colleagues, and then went out and made a commercial justifying his actions. Some acceptance of responsibility for impugning the civility of the House. It's time for the media to let it go.

    But of course now the media has to spend a week on President Obama's comment about Kanye – which by the way was an accurate and concise description of Kanye's rude and obnoxious behavior.

    Don't fault Congress for "wasting time" on a reprimand – look in the mirror and spend less time on gossip and more on the news.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:00 am |
  19. Michael

    There is a double standard in play. Wilson's behavior is more extreme than Kanye West's behavior! But where is the overwhelming support for the President, like there is for Taylor Swift? Wilson hijacked the President's address and Obama was stunned & nearly speechless as Taylor was. If you make an outburst in court like that to a judge, you would most likely be jailed in contempt...if your child does it in school to the principal during assembly, you would most likely be suspended...if you did it in worship, you would most likely be rebuked by the entire congregation. There is a time and place for everything and Wilson did not exercise the decorum that this event deserved.

    September 16, 2009 at 8:00 am |
  20. Elaine Harper

    I am a Desert Storm Veteran and I am appalled and disgusted about the level of Disrespect shown to our Commander in Chief around the Country but noteably by this representative of the People. Where is the line drawn between Free Speech and Mutiny, the forcible or passive resistance to lawful authority especially concerted revolt (as of a naval crew) against discipline or a superior officer – , it smells a lot like Mutiny to me and should be treated as such.
    Elaine in Florida

    September 16, 2009 at 7:59 am |
  21. Myrna Bray

    Exactly Stephanie!!!!!!

    TO Rick, April and Rev Dan Geslin, Why aren't you calling Kayne West a racist? Oh because he's black and she's white, There is no doubt there is racism going on all over the world not just here in America but for the majority. Who cares the color of his skin!!!!! His actions are causing the uproar.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:59 am |
  22. Steve

    All this squabbling about a rude blurting out during Obama’s speech is clearly now a waste of time and now only is being prolonged for political purposes. I would hope the congress and the media for that matter would focus on more important items such as improving economical conditions, controlling spending, etc., and refrain from sensationalistic “news” items.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:59 am |
  23. Esther

    I disagree with Former President Carter.This has nothing to do with racism.If this would have been former President Bush or Clinton this issue would have never came about. This man had what we call in america freedom of speech.The man disagreed with the President and spoke his mind..What is so wrong with that? I totally agree with him because the President sold a different healthcare plan in his election campaign along with other things that he has decided to change..and to me that would be lie. Let's move to more important issues and quit bringing racism into everything. I am a fan of freedom of speech!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:58 am |
  24. Kirt

    I totally agree with the vote to formally discipline Rep. Joe Wilson. President Obama should be given the same respect as any other president during a joint session of congress. Mr. Wilson is a person in leadership. Just as any other person in leadership, they must be responsible for their actions (knowing that there is a place and time for everything) It's about respect. Futhermore, I do believe that this new found critism of President Obama is RACE related. Is America really ready for a change?

    September 16, 2009 at 7:58 am |
  25. Stephanie Crawl, Shelby NC

    I don't know if Joe Wilson is the racist everyone is making him out to be. But there should be penalties for his behavior. BLACK or WHITE Obama is the President of the United States. Any member of Congress heckling the PRESIDENT during any speach should never be tolerated! If for no other reason the message it sends to the young people of this nation. There must be something done! And for the record I am a die hard Republican. And no matter who our President is, weither we agree with him and his agenda or not, disrespect of the man shows disrespect for the office! AND THAT IS THE REAL TRAVESTY HERE!!! S. CRAWL Shelby NC

    September 16, 2009 at 7:56 am |
  26. Joe

    Embarass Congress??? Give me a break!!!!! Our politicians do not need any one congressman to help embarass them, they are doing a bangup job on their own. Just look around......RECESSION, UNEMPLOYMENT,HOMELESSNESS,AND HELPLESSNESS. Oh, lets not forget HIGH PRICES on food, gas, utilities, taxes.....need I go on. Yeah, bangup job guys!!!!!!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:56 am |
  27. Cloudsleeper

    You know, YES we have way more impt things to deal with right now but should that mean we should let standards fall and by that basically not admonish and put an immediate stop to disrespect and another attempt at turning this country into a free for all? Bottom line, this guy was in the wrong, screwed up and maybe Kayne took notes when his issued his “apology” as both were fake as a $3 bill. We HAVE to keep focus but we cannot also let things degenerate like they seem to be doing now. That is why there are STAFF and help, we can do more than one thing at a time now just hopefully people can understand more than one thing at a time.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:56 am |
  28. theresa

    Forget about it already!! I think congress has more important things to do like investigating ACORN!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:54 am |
  29. James Hussher

    Rep. Joe Wilson and his ilk have done all they can to stall health care reform all summer – indeed for the past 60 years, while they supported the special interests of insurance and pharmacy to maintain the status quo. Now, all of a sudden, they think we are "wasting time" by taking half a day to censure Wilson. I think it was time well-spent and we needed to send a message that when the right-wing's disinformation campaign reaches to the level of disrupting and disrespecting the President of our country in a joint session of Congress, it will not be tolerated.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:54 am |
  30. deedeja3

    It's sad when a few racist folks refuse to accept the fact that we have a black president, and he was voted in legally. Get over it move on, have your tea party at home. george bush screwed us up. I have stock that never went any where since bush became president. Yes racisim is involved in everything that's smeared towards President Obama. Before it was hidden racism, now it is blatant and bold.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:54 am |
  31. DaDa

    I believe that we missed a teachable moment concerning this issue. If a student had made such an outburst during an assembly at school, I am sure that the student would have been suspended. We should expect more from ADULT electecd officials. And the other sad part about it is that yes I understand the government has other important work to do, but is this not important as well, when our children are watching and seeing that so many are saying just leave it alone it is not a big issue, what are we saying to them. He deserves some type of punishment so that others will not cause such an outburst in the future.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:53 am |
  32. Gerald Scholtes

    I feel when something is wrong it is wrong and if Joe Wilson broke a policy of the house either say I am sorry to the house or pay the penalty. But he being a Republican they are all above the law. Just look how many hired a prostitute and are still in office... If I did that I would get arrested. Remember Clinton.. He didn't even pay for sex and the republicans tried him for crap for 8 years. Shame on us for forgetting the screaming Republicans. and now they are doing worse and saying at least they didn't do as bad as Clinton.. but you people keep this up they you are proving they are right... ONLY DEMOCRATS CAN BE FOUND TO BREAK RULES AND LAWS

    September 16, 2009 at 7:53 am |
  33. Myrna Bray

    I am so glad Joe Wilson had the guts to speak up for me and say what so many of us were screaming at our televisions.
    I don't think he should be punished for speaking his mind. Yes there is a time and place for everything. But who hasn't had something fly out when you least expect it. Why weren't those democrats punished who booed President Bush when he was making his address?
    I am so sick of idiots who are screaming RACISM, there was nothing racist about his comment. Just because we don't agree with his views and plans to spend every dime available and unavailable doesn't mean we don't like him cause he's black. Who cares what color he is, anyone who tries to force me to follow him and his ideas or be fined, spend so much money our great great great grand children will be paying it off is an idiot and not a good choice for President of this great country. We didn't call ya'll racist when you bashed President Bush over and over and have yet to stop. At least we have been safe and unemployment wasn't at it's all time high across the country.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:53 am |
  34. jerry

    It is absolutely necessary to admonish this type of behavior because
    in Washington, if not addressed, the congress would become even
    more of a nut house than it already is – I for one am tired of the
    behavior of all congressmen, women, and senators – it is a joke.
    I don't think this is what the founders envisioned!!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:53 am |
  35. David Field

    The action of the Democrats in the House was a complete waste of time and the taxpayers money.. It was simply the Democrats rubbing Republicans nose in mud just to show they can. By and large I support the President and his proposals for better government. However, this sort of time wasting gives Republicans proof that electing Democrats is a big mistake. Just because Republicans may have done something similar in the past, i.e., impeaching President Clinton, doesn't justify the Democrats actions in this case.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:52 am |
  36. Carole

    Geez......Do ya think that the fact Wilson fought to preserve the Confederate Flag; called Strom Thurmond's Black daughter a 'smear'; Saying he was caught up in the town hall of August or was it he had not read the speech which even I read posted on CNN's website hours before it was delivered could be that Wilson is a Good Ole Son of the South? Who knew?

    This is ridiculous that such a question is asked. He called the President a liar on the Chamber floor and had to me made to apologize. Maureen Dowd is right, he really was saying 'You lie. Boy!!!'. If I can connect the dots, why can't the media just come off it and say it looks like a Duck and quacks like a Duck?

    September 16, 2009 at 7:52 am |
  37. Larry

    Wilson, my Congressman, should be punished for his boorish, rude behavior. Like a two-year-old, these wingnuts need to be shown their limits, or they'll just push harder and behave worse.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:51 am |
  38. jb Cantave

    Congressman Joe Wilson’s should resign. His lack of disrespect on the floor and direct insult to the President should not go unpunished- especially in front of the First Lady, and the American People.

    The Congressman failed to realize that the world is watching when the President is delivering that specific speech, not just our allies but also our enemies... what message is he sending out in regards to the civility, morals, and character of our state leaders within the United States. His actions will only further divide the American people.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:50 am |
  39. Joyce

    Where was the outrage when Bush was booed and called a liar. What hypocrasy in the Congress??
    Rep. Wilson expressed what so many informed Americans felt, our President has lied and misled us, and is being criticized because of his policies, not because of his color. The libs conveniently use the race card when a citizen objects to his or Congress's bills, proposals, etc.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:50 am |
  40. Denise Roberts

    It was great political theater - but was a complete waste of time, energy and resources.
    It seems Congress doesn't has enough time to get at the really important issues and problems facing our nation, but they always have time for this sort of nonsense.
    Priorities people! If I ran my business the way Congress runs there's I would have been out of business a long, long time ago!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:50 am |
  41. Sherrie G.Walker

    The sanction for Joe Wilson took a very small amount of time and should have been done. I watch House proceedings on C-Span and
    there are hours of declaring someone's high school football team the best in the nation and other drivel every day. This breach of civility was certainly worthy of a few minutes of time .

    September 16, 2009 at 7:49 am |
  42. Ulysses

    I feel that they didn’t do enough to him – this is the way that the republican party has been doing thing sense the Bush era – they think that they can say anything they want then say I apologies and that’s the end of it – but once its said you can not take it back – he is the president of we the people and he should be apologizing to we the people

    September 16, 2009 at 7:49 am |
  43. Eric Lorson

    This was necessary and long overdue. America has for too long allowed those who yell the loudest and longest to be heard over and above the truth. People have to be held accountable for what they say and do – ESPECIALLY when they are shouting out in a blatant attempt to disrupt progress.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:49 am |
  44. Clint H

    Wow... what a complete waste of money and time. Joe Wilson should have taken 5 minutes and apologize for his actions and embarrassing the House of Representatives in front of the whole world. That is all it would have taken to keep from wasting this money. I blame Joe Wilson for wasting our money.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:48 am |
  45. MG Kalfus

    Joe Wilson needed a formal reprimand...his behavior was a teacher I would have sent my student to the principal or Dean if it happened in my class....the Republicans spent 2 years building a case to censure Bill Clinton for his unbecoming conduct, wasting years of our government's time and money....they have a short memory...we need serious representatives...these are serious times.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:48 am |
  46. Bernice

    History shows, this would have never happenen with a white president. I'm proud of how the house responded.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:48 am |
  47. Trent

    oh ya...and hes a RACIST!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:48 am |
  48. Cynthia Bradley

    The house got it right,llet's move on.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:48 am |
  49. Ginger P. Patton

    I think it is very important that the House take action against Representative Wison Congress can take care of several tasks at the same time; what he did was embarassing to the entire country. You better believe if the tables had been turned and a Democrat had acted in the same manner to former President Bush, the outcry would have been astounding. I think censure is the most appropriate action to be taken .

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  50. Barbara

    Joe Wilson should be admonished for three reasons: the
    House has rules governing such behavior; Congressmen have
    been elected and represent a high level of leadership; the
    Congress and President are role models for all of us, including
    children–setting the standard of civility for our nation.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  51. Sharon Boyce

    Congress was perfectly legitimate to reprimand Wilson. It was a public outburst against a formal setting and the public, adults and school children and the like were listening and viewing this Presidents address. We teach our children to respect thier teachers and those in authority over them. It is no different to expect a voted in member of congress to do the same. The bible also teach us to respect and pray for those that is in leadership over us. Joe Wilson has lost a lot of respect from others and God. He needs his hand slapped and it is good it was not worst for him. He is already showing that he needs a teaching in proper etiquette.

    Sharon Boyce

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  52. Eva

    The Republicans tried to say that admonishing Wilson was a waste of time. But passing this resolution upholding our democracy by saying that disrespect against the President will not be tolerated was the most important work the Congress could do. If they had not done that, our Congress would have been no better than those in Iraq who turned the man who threw the shoe at President Bush into a hero.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  53. Roland

    I'd like to say that the house vote was important, but at the end of the day, they wasted all that time debating the actions of an idiot!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  54. David

    I think Congress did the right thing. What Rep. Wilson did was a breach of protocol. While he did apologize to the President, he also needed to apologize to Congress, where he works.

    Congress has been a bastion of civil behaviour with robust discussion.

    On another note, as a South Carolinan, I am tired of South Carolina politiians. Joe Wilson blurting out during a President's address, Senator Jim Dimit's disaparaging coments, and who can forget Govenor Mark Sanford abaoning his office in June.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  55. Cindy

    Mr. Wilson did not want to apologize and he didn't! He was 'told' by the GOP to say something and he did.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  56. Louise S.

    Even though there are more pressing agendas that need attention, I do believe the incident with Wilson needed addressing by by The House. Decorum should be maintained in this country and NOT addressing his outburst could potentially lead to more of the same. The line must be drawn in the sand that this behavior will not be tolerated.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  57. Jane

    Give Joe Wilson a Trophy ** He spoke for the American people" something most of the politicians are not doing. The politicans are totally only there for themselves and the big retirement check, which we need to do away with. That would save the country a lot of money, this needs to be presented to Congress, the house and the President.
    JOE WILSON for President !!!!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  58. Shelly

    I Really feel this should have been address. if the house didn't nip this in the bud now and stop the disrespectfulness of public officials then it would only get worser and worser. control yourself under all circumstances no matter how you may disagree with the chief in charge. should really be the message set forward.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  59. Jesse

    Wilson apologised to the person he was insulting and the apology was excepted. Issue should be over. What is really happening is that all this B.S. is nothing but a distraction ploy to keep from having to deal with the real issue at hand.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:46 am |
  60. Cynthia Smith

    Nobody has the right to call our President, whoever he is, a liar. What is this country coming to.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:46 am |
  61. Charles Speers

    This is ridiculous! He was wrong, apologized, its over...oh wait, Pelosi and her do nothing house need some more camera time. Its time she keeps one of her promises, that was to be hard working, and get Health Reform, Afghanistan, and her friends on Wall Street under control. We have no time for this BS.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:45 am |
  62. Trent

    I believe that the repremand should have taken place. It is not like it takes months or weeks to pass the repremand, and something must be done. If the repremand weren't passed, health care, no the general state of our whole union would still be the same.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:45 am |
  63. David

    I think it is such a waste of time. they could be focusing there efforts on the 10% Unemployment.. But DC is on there own planet.. they don't have to worry about there own jobs... its a shame...

    September 16, 2009 at 7:44 am |
  64. Scott Clifton

    Rules are rules and precident is precident! You break the rules and get away with it, you set a bad precident.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:44 am |
  65. Denis Radford

    Also, when Wilson called Obama a liar, I seem to remember that Obama just got done calling the conservative pundits liars. The difference? Joe Wilson's comments were reactionary. Pres. Obama's comments were premeditated and incinderary.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:39 am |
  66. 62yearoldbusinessman

    Let's get on and pass the health insurance option.
    People are dying while everyone is stalling
    More of my family members who were against President Obama’s health care plan are now for it. I believe they are seeing through the lies of the insurance companies by which they are paying the Republicans to spread them, The Republicans lie.
    Here is my problem with the Afghan and Iraq war. The money we are spending on these wars we could pay for health care. When we make provisions to give our people health care then we can spend money elsewhere. Not to mention all these bridges to nowhere and everything else like the space program, etc, etc....

    September 16, 2009 at 7:38 am |
  67. Denis Radford

    Where were you when Reid and Pelosi called Pres. Bush a liar? Where were you when Murtha called our troops rapists? Where were you when 2 million plus went to D.C. last saturday to protest the health care fiasco? Where were you when the Acorn stories broke, showing not 1 or 2 offices that were corrupt, but many? Where are you now? About to go out of business, I think. News is news, people. Stop letting your political views taint your coverage. We, the people, are much smarter than you think.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:36 am |
  68. Vanessa

    I agree with the admonishment of Rep. Wilson and his punishment should have been more severe. The comment that Rep. Wilson stated was very rude. No matter how you disagree with President Obama's policies, he is the United States President. I agree with President Carter. This is outright disrespect and is tied to racism in America. Racism still exists and it has been very apparent throughout President Obama's term.

    At this time, our lawmakers need to collaborate on various ideas and come up with solutions to stabilize our economy and pass legislation that work for Americans, not illegal immigrants.

    I do not agree with healthcare for illegal immigrants, but there are respectful ways of expressing this......

    September 16, 2009 at 7:34 am |
  69. Rick

    This is total racism and shows the true divide in our country. This is also showing the world what African Americans face on a daily basis. God bless American and our President!

    September 16, 2009 at 7:27 am |
  70. J Wright

    Rep. Wilson offended 3 different people/groups. The President, the House of Representatives, and the American people. He should apologize to all 3. Instead he rightly apologized to the president, then spent the weekend using his outrageous, rude behavior to raise money for his next political campaign. This has made his apology to President Obama a hollow apology, a hypocrisy. It meant nothing in view of using the incident to raise funds.

    September 16, 2009 at 7:13 am |
  71. april

    The President has taken on these problems he did not create them, so to the person who sad he lie(racist)

    September 16, 2009 at 7:12 am |
  72. Melodymaker

    I think it is appropriate, that he at least, be admonished, because of his inappropriate and rude behavior! Nowhere in history, at least, not in the last several decades, has this type of behavior occurred, in that setting. Why is that?

    September 16, 2009 at 6:58 am |
  73. Stephanie

    The idea that people who disagree with President Obama's policies are "racist" is ridiculous. I'm sure there is a small percentage of people who actually are but, for the most part, people are extremely concerned about over-spending and big government. It has absolutely nothing to do with the color of someone's skin. Kayne West got up and humiliated a white woman to stand up for a black woman and no one is calling him racist. It appears to be a double-standard and one that is being used unfairly to people who legitimately disagree with what is currently going on in the government.

    September 16, 2009 at 6:44 am |
  74. Rev. Dr. Dan Geslin

    CNN - How can you (or anyone) completely dismiss race and racism as an American reality? As for Wilson, why don't you report the fact that he was a leader in supporting the move to keep S. Carolina flying the Confederate flag over their capital. Just slip your mind. The very fact that you trot out Uncle Toms and Aunty Tomasinas to say on the air that there is not racism in America today - after one of the leading "Teabaggers" said on AC360 last night that our President is an "Indonesian Muslim turned welfare thug." You betray the truth.

    Rev. Dr. Dan Geslin

    September 16, 2009 at 6:43 am |
  75. Jeff

    Wilson said, “When we are done here today, we will not have taken any further steps toward helping” This is so true. Politicians should not waste time on this or any other stuff, like sports, that are not in the interest of the American public.

    Wilson said, “It is time that we move forward and get back to work for the American people.”

    You are correct sir!!!!

    September 16, 2009 at 6:15 am |
  76. Susan Rockey

    I am sick and tired of our “leaders” wasting so much time and money “smacking” someone on the hand for an outburst. Might I ask why the freedom of speech that everyone likes to scream about doesn’t apply to our elected officials? Regardless of the “appropriateness” of said outburst…if that is what the man felt he has the same right as everyone else to express it…although that was probably not the best time/place to do so. My concern is more with the amount of time being wasted talking about it and “repirmanding” him. Don’t we have a lot more important things to be dealing with. I don’t know about the rest of the world, but as a single mom, working in an emergency room, seeing the thousands of people coming in for health care with no insurance, I am way more concerned about that than whether someone spoke out during a speech! So seriously people…the man apologized…MOVE ON AND GET BACK TO WORK!!! My other beef with the whole situation is how much media time these things get…just once I would like to the the media to not perpetuate the wasting of my hard earned money. I would love to hear a news report that simply says "Congress and the House of Reps wasted another day hand slapping its members rather than dealing with the important issues in our world..." That's all that really went on with this whole issue anyway!

    September 16, 2009 at 6:03 am |
  77. jay m

    This man voted for healthcare for illegals when Bush was in office, what an idiot.

    September 15, 2009 at 8:55 pm |
  78. scot wheeler

    I think congress should not worry about wasting time to pass a resalution on thier dissaprovale af a comment. They should be spending there time creating more jobs in America. Scot at

    September 15, 2009 at 8:39 pm |