September 13th, 2009
03:54 PM ET
5 years ago

Let's move past Wilson's outburst, Cantor says


WASHINGTON (CNN) – The House Republican Whip said Sunday that the country needs to move on from South Carolina Republican Rep. Joe Wilson’s recent “You Lie!” outburst during President Obama’s address to Congress last week.

“Let’s go about the business that we are trying to get done which is to affect real health care reform,” Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Virginia, said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union.

Cantor noted that Wilson’s apology had already been accepted by the president and Wilson has said he would not engage in that type of behavior again.

“We’ve got to look to how we get this health care reform done right – not just get it done. And there are areas that we can agree,” Cantor also said, citing banning the practice of denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, trying to ensure coverage to people who have employer-provided coverage but who lose their jobs, and working on medical malpractice reform.

But Cantor also suggested that President Obama had a ways to go if the White House is to be successful on one of Obama’s top domestic agenda items.

“Underlying the fear that we are seeing out across this country is this sense that somehow we’re going to be replacing government decision-making for that of the individual and their doctor,” the Virginia Republican said, “The president [in his address to Congress], I don’t believe went far enough to allay those fears.”

Cantor said the American people “want to see some guarantees” about preserving the relationship between doctors and patients, about the continued vitality of the private market for coverage so that it is less likely the government will ever be able discriminate in the provision of health care, and about paying for the estimated $1 trillion price tag over 10 years for Obama’s health care reform plan.


Filed under: Eric Cantor • Health care • State of the Union
soundoff (152 Responses)
  1. Every

    These protestors will not focus on the real truth and positive initiatives of the Healthcare reform plan! THE REASON IS MOST OF THESE PEOPLE ARE DRIVEN BY RACIAL FEAR! Anytime a president is only in office 6 to 8 months and he is already forecasted and typecasted to lead the country down the tube, even though the economy is recoverying and brought back from the brink of disaster, and is met with lies, misinformation, misrepresntation, disrespect or racial fears spells a racist agenda! I disagree with David Axlerod, race is a major factor and being used by republicans subliminally, suttlely, incriminately and smartly to energize their constituients! Where was the protestors these last eight years! When 5 trillion in surplus was squandered, 8 trillion deficit was created, because Iraq, Afganistan War, Child medicare, Disability, and 3 trillion in tax cuts were not paid for upfront! It sounds racist to me! Now a black man is at the helm, and he cannot talk to school kids (even though white presidents have), have congressman call him a lie in midst an important speech, or must pay for reform or other programs upfront for fear of bigger deficit of which he is not responsible for, but 1 trillion to recovery, banks, wall street, auto industry andstabilizing homeowners mortgages, which is happenning! LOOKS LIKE RACISM TO ME! IF IT WALKS AND TALKS LIKE A DUCK IT MUST BE A DUCK!

    September 13, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  2. Lynne

    Of course Cantor says move on because Wilson's comments are an embarrassment to the Republicans. They also want to move on from the election results, health care reform and any sensible policies which would actually help the country's future.

    September 13, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  3. Marc Siskin

    I am just glad that Wilson didn't have a gun with him (as several people at town hall and presidential events have shown). We wouldn't be arguing about a lack of decorum and disrespect for both the President and the Congress, but rather be lamenting (or celebrating depending on your political persuasion) the injury or death of a politician.

    I feel that Wilson still owes the Congress an apology for the extreme disrespect he showed to the rules of the institution.

    September 13, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  4. jcow

    Why can't the Democrats get past this. Because it keeps the focus off them and the crazy spending they are trying to force on the American people. The very folks who are calling for an apology on the floor of the House are likely the ones in 2005 who heckled "No, No" during Bush's 2005 State of the Union speech when he said Social Security would eventually be broke. Joe Wilson did nothing worse than his Democratic counterparts in 2005 and now they want an apology???

    September 13, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  5. Dan, WA

    Democrats want to divert attention of the nation. They cannot perform. They are doing nothing in the congress and they just want to criticize GOP members. In case of healthcare, Barack Obama told a lie in front of the nation. Actually somebody wrote a lie for him and he read it on the teleprompter. Who is he to decide about my health-care. It is between me and my doctor. Keep yourself away.

    September 13, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  6. Bridgette-PA

    To "Republican Truth"...you don't call it an "apology" when someone apologizes and then within minutes, tapes a video but not apologize in the video. Give me a break. I can promise you OBAMA HATERS one thing.....he will be RE-ELECTED. You can have tea parties 24/7 but it will NOT STOP US :)

    September 13, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  7. Lee

    Did the Democrats "boo" president Bush before, absolutely NO respect for a sitting-president?

    September 13, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  8. katiec

    Talk about hypocrasy.
    Canter and the republicans will work on an acceptable health care reform when hell freezes over.
    Unfortunately, Wilsons lack of respect, hate, anger, fear mongering
    are what the republican party are all about.

    September 13, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  9. Mark

    Eric Cantor texting during the President's speech. He is another pretty faced rethuglican with no class, no ideas and no ability to tell the truth. Just another bottom feeder like limbaugh,savage,beck and hannity

    September 13, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  10. obamaalltheway

    Wilson was absolutely disrepectful to the office of the presidency.
    This would not be done under anyone else's name but the republican feel that they can treat President Obama anyway they want.
    The republicans have lost my vote for good!

    September 13, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  11. LMC

    I believe Wilson has apologized once and I doubt that would have happened if his party leadership hadn't forced him. I sincerely doubt his outburst was on the spur of the moment, if it was, he has less control than the majority of the elementary school children I teach! One expects more from a Congressional representative.

    September 13, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  12. Mike in MN

    I understand Obama accepted two appologies from Wilson already. Looks like Obama has moved past it. Who cares is Pelosi and her liberal crazies can't.

    September 13, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. Grace

    Really! Canter should make Wilson apologize to all Americans for his bad behavior.

    September 13, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. Phil in TX

    "You lie" is a personal attack.
    Booing [ala GWB's addresses] is an indication of disfavor.

    I doubt seriously that if it had been Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton making the exact same speech to Congress, Mr. Wilson would have vocalized his displeasure. Unfortunately, he is a southerner and feels the same respect is not due a black president.

    And for those of you who point out that President Obama is only half black, you undoubtedly don't live in the rural South.

    BTW, I'm a 60 year old white guy in Texas.

    September 13, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  15. Kaye Martin

    The reason why it is appropriate for Mr. Wilson to apologize to Congress is because his behavior was disrespectful , not just to President Obama, but to the entire body and I might add the American people.

    I am a teacher. I explain this to my students. When a student disrupts class. It is not just disrespectful to the instructor, but shows a lack of respect to his or her classmates.

    We cannot expect our young people to conduct themselves with dignity and decorum if we see our Congressional Representatives behaving like they're on Jerry Springer.

    September 13, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  16. JS007

    I can't believe that so many are missing the main point: it's not about standing up to the President – had someone stood up to Bush's lies we may not have ended up in Iraq. It's about the fact that Wilson was the one lying – the bill does NOT give insurace to illegals. It's also about the fact that the media has not challenged his fake apology and continued lying. Of course Obama accepted the apology, he's a classy guy, but the rest of us have to hold Wilson and his GOP friends to a higher standard.

    September 13, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  17. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Between Sanford and Wilson, South Carolina must be SO PROUD....

    September 13, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  18. No Hillary = No Obama

    Wilson's outburst is symptomatic of a presidency that is no longer respected or if it ever was to begin with. This is what happens when you elect someone with no proven track record and turn an election into a popularity contest.

    September 13, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  19. John in Dayton

    It's always interesting to me that Republicans want to move past the rhetoric when it's one theirs that commits "the crime", so to speak. But let a Democrat do the same and we'll hear about it for weeks if not months! It's not about the comment so much as where it was delivered that bothers me most – and Rep. Wilson should be admonished for his disrespect in a Congressional chamber.

    September 13, 2009 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  20. Mike

    The GOP would like to move beyond the statement yet Wilson is still out there calling the President a liar. The Dems should cram a single payer plan down the the GOP's miserable throats. Too bad they don't have the courage to do it.

    September 13, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  21. Jon

    Cantor is such a piece of work. Today he's preaching bi-partisanship and the other day he was whipping up the nut-baggers into a frenzy.

    September 13, 2009 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  22. HAWK IN TEXAS

    I have a better idea, let's forget cantor. he has proven himself a certifible nut.

    September 13, 2009 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  23. Yeah Right....

    Why are we the only "developed country" in the world without Universal Healthcare? The main people protesting the healthcare bill will probably be the maine people needing health care in the future and won't be able to pay for it.

    September 13, 2009 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  24. Jane

    I think Mr WIlson needs to publically apologize on the House floor; especially since it sounded like he really didn't apologize when he used the incident to raise campaign money.

    What a bunch of Losers!

    September 13, 2009 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  25. mb-texas

    let us move on say all Republican leaders but they can get up at these so call tea parties and throw out all kinds of misinformation.
    In viewing the Republicans at the joint speach they looked like
    they were in a trance.They need to get to work and do for the American people something good a Health Care reform bill.

    September 13, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
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