September 9th, 2009
10:53 PM ET
9 years ago

Wilson calls White House to apologize

WASHINGTON (CNN) - CNN's Deirdre Walsh reports that Republican Rep. Joe Wilson called the White House Wednesday night to apologize for his outburst during President Obama's speech, and spoke with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

UPDATE: CNN's Ed Henry reports that a senior administration official says that in the phone call, Emanuel accepted the apology on behalf of the president and told the congressman: "We can disagree without being disagreeable. That was the point of the President's speech."

Filed under: Joe Wilson
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. John Black Hills/SD

    This kind of behavior by a US Congressman, who represents his states constituency is nothing but irresponsible and unprofessional. Rep. Wilson should hold himself to a standard that young people, who are still in school, would be looking at federal representatives Rep. Wilson, as role models. His apology was correct, but his act of total disrespect from his rant is embedded in peoples memories, and it represents your true nature. President Obama didn't just throw his health care reform up in one evening, by the office responsible for putting a program together no one can understand. Then everyone will forget, and four years have passed. The White House website gives you the story in black and white, there's no reason not to understand his proposal, unless your to lazy to read.

    September 10, 2009 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  2. T-Ruff

    Your conduct during the Presidential address was extremely immature and deplorable. You are a terrible representative for our state of South Carolina. Your conduct suggest to our youth that it is ok to be disrespectful if you disagree....What message does that send to our youth, what message does that send to our country...You are unfit to represent the great state of South Carolina.

    September 10, 2009 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  3. barbara Sonies

    I was most impressed with the Presidents speech , and as a senior citizen, I am most hopeful that we can pass a public plan option while we look to cut costs for litigation that increases costs. I am so concerned that Republicans have been defiant without any true plan and that they are so belligerent without concern for the country's health.

    I think it is up to Congress to construct and pass a plan within the guidelines set out by PresidentObama. I feel Republicans should be ashamed of their reactions and spreading of lies and fear through the country.

    September 10, 2009 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  4. steven harnack

    Republicans have no class and no shame.

    September 10, 2009 12:39 am at 12:39 am |
  5. houstontx@50

    His behavior was uncalled for ,there is no excuse for it this is our PRESIDENT SHOW HIM SOME RESPECT.

    September 10, 2009 12:40 am at 12:40 am |
  6. T'SAH from Virginia

    Just like in the REPUBLI-CAN'T's Town Hall Meetings – the crowds curse and threaten President Obama. It was NOT a mistake he blurted out!!! He meant to say what he said and he meant to blurt it out!! APOLOGY NOT ACCEPTED!!!

    September 10, 2009 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  7. Alice in California

    I had no idea who Rep. Joe Wilson was before President Obama's speech and have no interest in him after it. He is a petty, ill mannered slob from what I can tell who has no business in the political arena. I'm glad that his party was embarrassed by him now I hope that they vote the loser out next time around.

    September 10, 2009 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  8. Gopsaurus

    South Carolina politicians can't seem to control themselves.

    September 10, 2009 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  9. dt

    Joe Wilson, another Classic example of republican party.

    September 10, 2009 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  10. Wayne

    Mr. Wilson You represent the politics of old. No matter what our differences are civility and respect for each other should be at the forefront of our challenges and disagreement. Shame on you Mr. Wilson, I hope your behaviour does not represent the foundation of republican party that is now being called the party of NO!!!!!!!!

    September 10, 2009 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  11. Tucker Holland

    Thats typical of the people who hate Obama. They don't disagree with his policies, its the skin color!!! Not wanting there kids to hear him speak to them in the class room (encouragement). H Bush/Reagan did it, no problem! What you heard from Mr. Wilson is simply a carry over from the McCain rally last year, an eldery woman stands and says he is not an American, and she's afraid of what he'll do to this country. I certainly hope he won't treat America like Mr. Madof or Mr. Sanford or many of the other out standing citizens. I'm an eveyday go to work kinda guy, worked hard, served America American!!

    September 10, 2009 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  12. Joe In Vegas

    President Obama has made history with his ground breaking speech and has all but assured that his health care reform will pass.

    Rep. Joe Wilson has made history for sinking the republican party to even lower depths (bottom feeding miscreants). His outburst has all but assured that the GOP has absolutely NO! leadership and their infantile attempts to undermine President Obama have officially failed.

    This is a great day for America!

    September 10, 2009 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  13. Ren from Baltimore

    Many of us hope that Rep Wilson wil bring his hair-trigger reaction temperament to the fore when it comes to triggering the "public option." No real need four years if the insurance industry doesn't get their own costs down; fire that trigger withn weeks.

    The fact that such behavior was only a breath away from actually coming out of his mouth, however, suggests perhaps a less than happy ending for this man's immediate political career.

    September 10, 2009 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  14. David S. Robins

    Let's hope the White House put the scumbag Wilson on hold for a couple of hours before finding a janitor to accept his "apology." We already knew Joe Wilson is a liar, it's good that he proved it again on prime time television with the whole nation watching.

    September 10, 2009 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  15. Maureen

    I am Canadian and a great admirer of President Obama. I was shocked and disgusted at the lack of respect shown him by Joe Wilson during President Obama's speech. To call the President of the United States a liar is unforgiveable. You people don't seem to realize what the rest of the world seems to agree on – That President Obama is the best thing to happen to America in many years. You elected him to make change and your trust and admiration for him and your desire for that change elected him to the highest office in the land. Since then your Red Neck Republicans have shown they have one agenda and only one = to bring him down any way possible. by the way – you people should be so lucky to have a health care system like we enjoy in Canada. Wake up America before it is too late and you end up like Russia, once a super power, now a wanna be.

    September 10, 2009 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  16. Mark

    Need I say more....

    Crude Republican PIG....

    September 10, 2009 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  17. RepWilson needs to go

    This has got to be one of the saddest days in the history of modern politics. Not only did this guy embarass himself, his state, but the entire United State of America. I know some people are cheering his comments, but the sad fact of the matter is he was WRONG!!! I am amazed that the Repubs continue to offer nothing but lies and shame... Where is your bill? How are you going to solve the health crisis? What do you bring to the table besides HOT AIR ?!!!

    September 10, 2009 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  18. michaeljpmurray

    Why so angry?

    September 10, 2009 12:52 am at 12:52 am |
  19. Anonymous

    South Carolina should add Joe Wilson to the list requesting resignations The apology will not get it. He represented SC and now his state appears rather ignorant because of his actions. Two bad words and you are out of here. Never to be respected again.

    September 10, 2009 12:54 am at 12:54 am |
  20. freda

    I am so proud of my President. He's such an inspiration to me and I'm thrilled he can exercise his character of brillance without having a gigantic ego. He knows what's good for the USA and if the blue dogs and republicans would just allow him to do what's good for the country we will all become beneficiaries of his leadership.

    With regard to Republican Rep. Joe Wilson, ignorant is ignorant does. He was unable to exhibit his respect for the President of the United States for just one hour. He was extremely disrespectful.

    We will have the public option whether the republicans like it or not. It's not that they are against the public option – they're against Preident Obama. I wonder why.

    September 10, 2009 12:55 am at 12:55 am |
  21. Dorothy Dotson

    Joe Wilson is a disgusting dreg of humanity and he makes me ashamed. I think his apology was the LIE.

    September 10, 2009 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  22. Nicole

    What grade is Joe Wilson in again? What a DB!

    September 10, 2009 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  23. Why does the GOP still exist?

    The GOP - the party of utter douchebags.

    September 10, 2009 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  24. Sam

    WIlson did all of us a favor: he showed and reminded us of how implacable the extreme right has been and will be on the health care debate. They cannot reasonably be expected to be part of a solution.

    Can you imagine trying to reason with an American Congressman who call a sitting American President a liar during the President's speech to the joint Congress?

    No point continuing to try.

    September 10, 2009 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  25. David Newport, OR

    what do you expect from a Republican? This is what we have to work with...100% ignorance shown in its purest form.

    September 10, 2009 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
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