Rep. Walsh says folks like McCain 'have no clue'
July 28th, 2011
10:52 AM ET
3 years ago

Rep. Walsh says folks like McCain 'have no clue'

Washington (CNN) – Freshman Republican Rep. Joe Walsh took issue with Senate stalwart John McCain's criticism of tea party efforts regarding the debt ceiling and blamed the old guard for the fiscal failures of Congress.

"Folks like Sen. John McCain have been in this town for too long and they're the ones who have gotten us into this mess year after year after year," the Illinois congressman said Thursday on "CNN Newsroom." "Folks like him … have no clue as to the troubles Americans are going through right now. They don't understand this crisis anymore."

Arizona Sen. McCain on Wednesday said ultimatums issued by many in his conference, like insisting on a balanced budget amendment to the constitution that he said will not become law, are "worse than foolish." But Walsh said he and his fellow fiscally conservative freshmen came to Washington to find a solution to the crisis.

Walsh, who was elected in 2010 with tea party support, said he is more concerned with solving the debt crisis than he is with the August 2 deadline for raising the borrowing limit to avoid a potential default.

Conservative members of Congress, particularly freshmen, are a key voice in the debate over the debt ceiling with their unbending positions that have become obstacles for House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in their attempts to reach a compromise.

"I'm obsessed with making sure that we solve this debt crisis and if it takes us a few more days, let's do it," Walsh said.

When asked about a recent report in the Chicago Sun-Times that he owes $117,437 in child support to his ex-wife and that his home was foreclosed upon, Walsh said his struggles mirror those of many Americans.

"I ran as a guy who lost his home and had had financial struggles, like a lot of Americans," Walsh said. "This is where a lot of Americans come from right now. It's why they sent so many of us to Washington to do something about this because we're living this experience."

– CNN Political Producer Shannon Travis contributed to this report.


Filed under: Congress • Debt • Deficit • John McCain
soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. mfhpr

    eight years

    July 28, 2011 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  2. Republican Robber Baron

    Rep. Walsh should switch to de-caff. He along with the Tea Nuts are totally delusional and misinformed.

    July 28, 2011 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  3. gw

    As much as I dislike McCain, this pledge-taking, cult, fiscal Taliban, punk is a disgrace to Congress and the state of Illinois. McCain has paid his dues as a Vietnam War veteran and a his decades of service to this country in Congress. This kid is a nothing and can't even think for himself. He's a member of a cult that seeks to destroy our country.

    July 28, 2011 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  4. mfhpr

    Hey Ed in Texas, I'm with you. One way we can start putting them in their place is to stop recognizing them at the GOP. They are no longer grand, and it's clear to me it could be some time before they can reclaim that title. They're REPs and DEMs are DEMs. The media needs to stop referring to them as GOP. They're far from it. Agree?

    July 28, 2011 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  5. BD70

    Sounds like my ex son in law. Wouldn't want him legislating anymore than this dude. Disgusting piece of crap.

    July 28, 2011 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  6. AC

    Rep. Walsh your a LIAR and a CHEAT. Pay your child support payments! Your a DEADBEAT dad, take care of your kids! Rep. Walsh you should be ASHAMED of yourself, take care of your kids. PAY the money that you owe for your kids you deadbeat. YOUR A LIAR!

    July 28, 2011 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  7. wishing

    Sounds to me like a dead-beat dad, who won't support his children because he hates his ex-wife for dumping him. He may be like a lot of other Americans; I just don't think I want someone like that directing the country and trying to give me budget advice.

    July 28, 2011 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  8. Kevin

    The Tea Party is eating its own and it's just a matter of time before the seasoned and rational senior statesmen boot them all out. And then there's elections.

    July 28, 2011 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  9. Michael

    Before they lead this country and all the rest of us into insolvency, these "Tea Party" domestic terrorists need to be sent to where they belong.........GITMO.

    July 28, 2011 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  10. trashcup

    Walsh doesn't have a spending problem, he has an income problem! Skipping out on owing over $100,000 over many years so that your kids are taken care of is the signature of a slug. This guy has a job, has insurance, has the tea party to pay his expenses, and he still is screwing his own kids.

    Whatever this guy says if total BALONEY. Who cares what this guy says – he's a SLUG.

    July 28, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  11. MarineDad05

    The Tea Party is full of people like Walsh.

    They think that with their bigoted and really anti-people agenda, they are going to get someplace. The other idiot Bachman, wants to pray away gays.

    These are a bunch of buffoons.

    I am Dem, but have a lot of respect for McCain. I don't agree with a lot he say says and believes, but for me, the big thing is he served and sacrificed a lot for the country.

    The Republicans are to blame for a lot of this idiocy with the Tea Party.

    They stupidly traded short-term gains, for long-term political gains. And now, the Republicans are controlled by ill-educated people like Palin, Bachman, Rush, Hannity, O'Rielly, and so on.

    All the Republican stalwarts, and anybody who commanded some respectability has been driven away. I do fault McCain, in making the biggest blunder of his career – picking Palin as a running mate.

    July 28, 2011 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  12. MarineDad05

    A correction. It wasn't Bachman who wants to 'pray away the gays', but it is that other 'intelllectual', Coulter.

    July 28, 2011 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  13. LacrosseMom(real one)

    @ MarineDad05: Thank you! Well said!

    July 28, 2011 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  14. TeeMann

    I think Walsh is clueless. You can't be concerned about the debt without being concerned about debt ceiling too...they go hand in hand. Defaulting will lead to higher interest and thus more debt....it is a vicious cycle. At least if you don't default you have some hope of solving the debt issue.

    July 28, 2011 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  15. MiddleOfTheRoad

    "Walsh said his struggles mirror those of many Americans."

    Not in my neighborhood. What kind of income do you have in order to be BEHIND by $117,000 in child support. Many people I know would consider that 3 years of gross income.

    July 28, 2011 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  16. The Other Michael in Houston

    Really man?????? Dead beats dads who live beyond their means trying to tell us how is one of us. I pay my child support and my mortgage, actually 3 mortgages failthfully, so you are not one of us, dead beat. Hope you like your candidates Tea losers.

    July 28, 2011 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  17. M

    So if the country defaults and the economy goes into a tailspin because of it, will Rep. Walsh and his Tea Party brethren be willing to own up to the fact that they royally screwed up? They should, but I bet they won't. They scream about responsibility, yet they're all too willing to lead this country over a cliff.

    To these irresponsible House freshmen: If you haven't finished unpacking your things in Washington yet, you'd better wait until this is all over because, if you plunge the country into a financial crisis, you'll be going home after the next elections.

    July 28, 2011 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  18. MarineDad05

    So, this Walsh guy didn't pay child support...more than $100,000

    So, he must have been making quite a bit before turning into a deadbeat?

    Of course, only Tea Party heroes like him can lecture others on how we go about our country's finance.

    July 28, 2011 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  19. Ron

    Pobricito!. Poor Walsh. It's McCain's fault, Obama's fault, the government's fault that he owes $117K in child support and lost his house. I hope his constituents get tired of him playing the victim role. But hey, now that he's in Congress, he has a good salary, really good health care (which he wants to deny the rest of us), and lots of other perks.

    July 28, 2011 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  20. NoTags

    A "deadbeat dad", perfect for the tea party.

    July 28, 2011 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  21. tprivate

    Reading through these comments, it does not seem that congressman Walsh is liked very much. Clearly he is one-term wonder as the rest of the Tea Party are destined. So they had their moment of arrogant glory, will become a footnote in history, and hopefully, we can all recover from the incredible damage that they are doing to this country, its economy, its image, its GRACIOUSNESS, and respect. We saw such behavior with GIngrich remember, and what influence does he merit now? Lets just hope that in the next few days, the few experienced, politicians left in Washington can find a way to clean up after the Tea Party. Which one is the Mad-Hatter, Mr Walsh?

    July 28, 2011 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  22. Joe B-b-b-b-bob

    This guy can't even get his own financial house in order and he thinks he knows best how to do so for the country. That's what you call hubris, chutzpah, arrogance, stupidity. . . .

    July 28, 2011 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  23. Linda

    The Tea party idiots want to destroy our nation- they are not in the real world. The Republicans want to destroy social security ( which we each pay into all of our lives) while they live off of our tax money and we pay their cushy retirements and health care. They only want Obama to fail because they are racist ignorant and funded by big business- oil companies are reaping the biggest profits in history and they say it is non negotiable to cut loop holes that would help bring back money to our government. Listen to what they are really saying, America! Vote them out! They are obscene, unAmerican and uneducated. Bush did not include the two illegal and immoral wars that he started in the budget – now, in reality, Obama has included those and people scream that this is his fault. I have never been so embarrassed to be an American as I listen to the media prop up these idiots as if they have real solutions. Even NPR is giving air time to imbeciles!

    July 28, 2011 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  24. handshake

    Worried about our kids and grandkids having to pay off our debt? How are your kids handling your perdsonal finacial default?

    July 28, 2011 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  25. mfhpr

    Just heard he loaned $35K of his own money to his campaign while owing the child support. Also, his staff's response to the Chicago Sun Times article is that he's no different than the average dead-beat dad. More of a loser every minute...

    July 28, 2011 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
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