September 9th, 2009
10:09 PM ET
4 years ago

GOP congressman heckles Obama during health-care speech

Rep. Wilson the congressional heckler.
Rep. Wilson the congressional heckler.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A Republican House member shouted "you lie" during President Barack Obama's health-care speech to Congress on Wednesday, and members of both parties condemned the heckling.

When Obama denied that proposed health-care legislation would provide free health coverage for illegal immigrants, South Carolina Republican Rep. Joe Wilson shouted, "You lie!"

Obama paused and looked toward the Republican side of the chamber before
continuing his speech.

After the speech, Republican Sen. John McCain, the Republican presidential candidate defeated by Obama last year, called Wilson's outburst "totally disrespectful" and said he should apologize.

McCain said there was "no place for it in that setting or any other and he should apologize immediately."

Other Republicans also criticized Wilson, along with the expected Democratic condemnation.

"It was crude and disrespectful," said Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, a top Senate Democrat. "I think the person who said it will pay a price."

Updated: 10:00 p.m.


Filed under: Joe Wilson • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Sase

    Did we ever hear anyone cry out "LIAR" during one of GW's speeches? We all know he lied to our faces! Very disrespectful and let's see if the Reeeps will denounce such behavior and separate themselves from Wilson.....after all...if so much as a weatherman says its gonna rain and it doesn't...Pres. Obama gets called to the carpet!

    Such a sad display of hated from an elected official!

    September 9, 2009 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  2. Marcia Clement

    It's no time to soon to start the "calling out!"

    September 9, 2009 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  3. Robert Farrell

    Good old Joe must have been attending many of the town hall meetings on Health Care, or he is looking for a job at FOX News. GOP keeps disrespecting the office of the President.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  4. tee

    Very disrepectful...he owes the President a public apology.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  5. John Merrick

    Joe Wilson of South Carolina is an embarrassment to our country and himself. As my father always told me, there is a weak cow in every herd.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  6. Cynthia

    Congressman Joe Wilson from South Carolina showed the world tonight how IGNORANT he is!!!!!
    I have never seen a Congressman or Senator Democrat or Republican Ever disrespect the President of the US in chamber.
    The people of South Carolina should be embarrassed.
    Instead of participating in the health care debate he needs to take ETIQUETTE classes immediately.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  7. dironada

    No respect for the president! It appears he get treated like the dirt we walk on, is it because he's black? and a black president?

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  8. EVERY VOTE COUNTS

    You are the most dishonest person in America that I have ever seen. I just want you to know with that disrespectful unAmerican remark yelled out during a speach from the highest leader in the world. I will be heading down to your state to fight against you during your re-election.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  9. Andrea

    Between this and the crazy claims about President Obama's speech to kids about hard work, the Republicans have not covered themselves with glory. What an embarassment.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  10. Katherine K

    Classy. Very, Very classy. There are no words.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  11. Sherryann

    You know in this life time, whenever someone wants to try and help everybody we have a hot head from of course South Carolina to call the President of the United States a LIAR.
    Senator, if ypu were to look back in your pass and probably now , how many lies has you told to get ahead. A least we know Obama is looking out for the best of all the people. He does not care if you are black, white, jewish, spanish, greek, indian, scotish, african, you name the nationality he just want as much healthcare for everyone. Senator you need to help us clean South Carolina, we have a governor ( Mark Sandford) who has lied to us and left us. What do you have to say to him. You see you must clean your own front door before you can clean another person back door, Mr. Wilson we will make sure you are re-elected.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  12. Dave

    Wilson- You should be ashamed of yourself. Honest debate is one thing. Absolute disrespect is another.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  13. Gregg McConnell

    Tell Joe Wilson to start looking for a new Job. Americans don't need a disrespectful fool like him in Washington.

    September 9, 2009 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  14. Tom

    1930s - Republicans oppose Social Security... "will lead this country into communism". Not a single yes vote. 1960s - Republicans oppose Medicare ... "will kill private insurance" ... "government takeover".

    Not a single yes vote. Neither allegations were true or became true. Which program does your grandparents want to get rid of? How about the Socialist/Marxist PUBLIC school you went to? or the Socialist/Marxist Public Fire Dept? Socialist/Marxist Public Library? Police Dept? Armed Services? All Government run. None of them have run any private enterprise "out of business".

    The Public Option is just that, AN OPTION.

    Dow we want to fall for the same scare tactics and bogus claims from the people who wanted to kill and still want to kill Social Security or Medicare?

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  15. mary from minnesota

    Not appropriate. People of South Carolina, what do you say of this?

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  16. Susan Rozelle

    I'm glad I don't live in South Carolina, especially in his district. If I did, I would move. I agree with Senator McCain.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  17. J

    I agreed with John McCain
    Joe Wilson was totally disrespectful and that won't do their party any good.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  18. stephanie,ohio

    Joe should be ashamed of himself and does not deserve the right to be called Senator anything. A true American Idiot!!

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  19. Suneel

    Rep. Wilson, ironically, outlines exactly what Obama mentioned he is fighting against. Is responding "you lie" to debunking rumors all that the Republicans will ever think of?

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  20. Pat

    He is an idiot

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  21. Debbie

    Wow, a new low even for Republicans. He needs to apologize or always be known as the disrespectful loser in The House of Representatives.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  22. PAUL W

    Just more proof that Republicans don't deserve a seat at the adult table in this debate and legislation.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  23. ms- denver

    Not only should he apologize but should do so very publically. I am sure his mother would be ashamed as should his entire constituentancy. Pathetic.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  24. Curtis

    Whether you agree with the POTUS or not, it is extremely disrespectful to shout out "Liar". Even if you dont like him, you still respect the office. Too bad he wont be disciplined.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  25. Klaus

    Rep. Wilson should be ashamed.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
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