September 15th, 2009
01:15 PM ET
5 years ago

House Democrat rejects effort to punish Wilson

Rep. Paul Hodes rejects effort to punish Wilson.
Rep. Paul Hodes rejects effort to punish Wilson.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – At least one Democrat is rejecting efforts by House leadership to punish Rep. Joe Wilson for his controversial outburst on the House floor last week.

New Hampshire Rep. Paul Hodes, who is also running for Senate in 2010, said Tuesday that he will not support the "resolution of disapproval" against Wilson, which is scheduled to be voted on later today.

While Hodes called Wilson's actions "reckless and disrespectful," he said in a statement that "the focus on his outburst has served as a distraction to the larger goal of providing affordable, portable, high quality health care to every family."

"In my judgment, it's time to move on and I do not support this resolution," Hodes said. "We should not allow Mr. Wilson's reckless conduct to overshadow the need to work together to craft a strong health care reform measure that gives Americans lower costs, more choice, and real control in a fiscally responsible fashion."


Filed under: Joe Wilson • Paul Hodes
soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. Preston

    So, Mr. Hodes, you and the Republicans are prepared to create a precedent by allowing this flagrant violation of House rules to slide under the rug. This "distraction" was created by Wilson. The time spent on the resolution is a relative drop in the bucket, and doesn't begin to compare to the damage done to the House if it chooses to act as though it never happened. Coward.

    September 15, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  2. Ron

    Spending all this energy on censure of Joe Wilson is not only a distraction, it draws even more attention to him, which he gobbles up, and makes him into even more of a hero amongst his base. This guy apologized to the President, then used his outburst to raise money. Don't give him any more attention! This tit for tat just shows how small both Parties are.

    September 15, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. Joe, Georgia

    I agree with Representative Hodes that it's time to drop the Wilson issue and get on with the issues of the day. I would think Representative Wilson would want to do the same, but he keeps repeating the same misrepresentations about health care reform efforts and illegal immigrants being granted access to health care benefits by the bills before Congress and the President's proposals. Why can't he and the Republican leadership simply step up and do the right thing, admit they are wrong and that they have been intentionally misleading their constituents for political gain. The Senate bill which is being released tomorrow is in fact strengthening many of the provisions already in the existing House bills to restrict access to illegal aliens. It would really be nice to have a few honest Republicans stand up, if they want to oppose health care reform, and offer an alternative to the current health care mess we have in this Country rather than continue to mislead people and get people fired up to oppose reform because of issues like access for illegal immigrants and access to abortion that don't even exist in the bills.

    September 15, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  4. Reality in AR

    I would not give this another moment of taking attention away from Healthcare Reform. He has already shown his ugliness to the world so let Obama be the class act as he continues to be. As the bible says "No weapon formed against me shall prosper".

    September 15, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  5. SallySue

    When "Obama" stands in front of Congress and tells lies – he should be called on them. Wilson did the right thing – too few members of Congress have the "balls" to do that!!

    September 15, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  6. notfooledbydistractions

    So now the childish republican members of the house can break any rules with no accountability. The beligerence of the bush administration continues. Nice.

    September 15, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  7. OldSchoolVet

    Good move Mr. Hodes. Joe Wilson's so called out burst was nothing more than a slick political move by a slick political mover.

    September 15, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  8. Peoples Voice

    Hey, Paul. You are an idiot. Why not just change the (D) behind your name to an (R)?

    September 15, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  9. Leonard

    Wilson need to be punished when are going to draw the line to the abuse of feedom of speech. It is a freedom but the freedom ends when you infringe on the right of others.

    If you ask me as a military man. Wilson should be Court Martial. He is in the Army Reseerve and disrespected his Commander in Chief in public.

    September 15, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  10. Waddell

    I agree with Rep Hodes. Put this to bed and let's focus on the work needing all of Congress' attention. Why give them a reason to DISTRACT? Enough distraction!. The man (Joe Wilson) said he was sorry and whether or not he meant it (I doubt it), that should be sufficient. Giving more time to his "slip of the tongue" means less time spent on the healthcare business, the war business, the economic business, etc.

    Overkill is the word. Next election will decide whether or not Joe WIlson remains in the nasty game of politics.

    September 15, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. Joan

    Mr. Willson apologized to the President for calling him a liar which was appropriate and the President accepted his apology. However, he now seems to have backtracked on that and is actually cashing in on his rude behaviour. He never did apologize to his peers for breaking protocol in the Congress and so it is appropriate for him to acknowledge that he did in fact break the rules of conduct. He does not need to elaborate, just take responsibility for his actions. That's all. They are setting a serious precedent if they don't call him on this because anyone can act like like a rude, spoiled child in Congress if they don't..

    September 15, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  12. Ron

    ""In my judgment, it's time to move on and I do not support this resolution," Hodes said."

    I agree. As a registered Democrat, it is time to move on. Ignorance consumes itself so let Wilson stand in his own puddle. After 8 years of the GOP, i am ready to move on and accomplish things that will improve our country. They, the GOP, will sit there and argue, as they always do...Let them, we can move on without them, if necessary. The U.S. is ready for change and the last election proved this fact. If the GOP wishes to be apart of this change, then they and the Democrats, at times, need to learn to work with each other, rather for their own party and self interests. If the GOP refuses, then leave them behind but continue forward. A better day awaits!

    September 15, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  13. Island girl

    As disgusting and ill mannered as this outburst was, it is truly time to move on. Dwelling on Wilson's and fellow S. Carolinean Gov. Sanford's woes is not moving the agenda forward. There is no need to waste time challenging these types who are contributing to their own demise. They are their own enemies, so let them be!

    September 15, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  14. Chipster

    Wilson apologized and the President accepted his apology. That should be the end of it.

    If Wilson now claims that his apology was phony, it reflects pretty poorly on him. Disrespecting the Office of the President is shameful. Making a false apology shows a serious lack of courage and character.

    I can't imagine that either side of the aisle would be too impressed. Let the voters decide. It depends on their character or lack thereof, I suppose.

    September 15, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  15. American

    What happened to the man's freedom of speech. Just because he had a belief and voiced it during a presidential speech does not give the so called guardians of the consitution the right to walk all over its first amendment.

    September 15, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  16. A Democrat of 51 years who has finally got smart to their follishness.

    Yes you reject it because you know he spoke the truth.

    September 15, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  17. SMP

    Rep. Hodes, I applaud you. Let's worry about healthcare reform and not this petty bickering.

    Joe Wilson apologized to the President. His apology was accepted. Move on.

    September 15, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  18. gt

    we have beaten this dog enough... let it rest !

    September 15, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    We, the American people, support the resolution because he violated the rules of decorum in the House. No matter all r the boos (well deserved) that the Ultimate Liar:Bush received, no one EVER disrespected him to this extent while he was addressing Congress on national television. I mean really, it is patently absurd to say let's just move on. The line needs to be drawn, and clearly: you respect the office of the President. If we don't then who will?

    September 15, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  20. ok to disrespect

    Keep an eye on Tulsa Oklahoma, because the next time my daughter gets in trouble for speaking her mind in class and should school officials want to give her detention I will not allow it and tell them to look to our own congress, a half wit apologies is all that is needed.

    September 15, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  21. Dean

    When the House gets through with Wilson maybe they can open up debates on steroids in baseball again. There are not any important issues that have any ramifications for the country for them to focus on
    at this time......................

    September 15, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  22. FAYE, NV

    Wilson comment is another thing that divides the country. This back and forth is harmful and only damaging the citizen. Wilson has shown his true colors and he's not remorseful for what he said.

    I personally think an apology should be done the the whole nation. Since the nation was watching, he should do it on the floor. But his ego will not allow him to do so.

    September 15, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  23. Jay

    Gee, Paul, let's see here. Joe Wilson and his entire family get free, single-payer, government-supported health care via TRICARE. Joe touts on his website that he's out to stop single-payer, government-supported health care, even though he and his family are in such a plan. Joe even votes 11 times in 8 years to cut funding or stop funding for veterans, even though that's where he gets his free government-supported health care. And you really think this hypocrite shouldn't be censured for calling Obama a liar, when obviously Joe is so terribly confused on the issue the only thing he can do is act like a clueless jerk in front of the American people? Really?

    September 15, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  24. Tina

    Thank you Paul Hodes for demonstrating some common sense in the Joe Wilson matter. It's time to drop this and let Joe Wilson be.

    September 15, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  25. Trade Freedom for Security, Lose Both

    Today, I passed my own resolution disapproving of Congress! My resolution will become binding in 2010 at the voting booth.

    September 15, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
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