Rep. Walsh says folks like McCain 'have no clue'
July 28th, 2011
10:52 AM ET
7 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. NVa Native

    It's real easy – stop making every thing a political opportunity for a childish tantrum, pass a one sentence bill to increase the US debt limit – which is the historical norm, and then Bubby Walsh get your lazy self-serving dumb-ass to work and actually do something!
    Where are the jobs you promised?? The American People want you to stop promoting your fake hysteria.

    July 28, 2011 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  2. Squealy

    All the senior congresspeople need to take the freshman republicans and put them over their knees to slap the newcomer teenage "we know better than our parents" attitude right out of them.

    July 28, 2011 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  3. w2wageslave

    This is the most irresponsible act i've ever witnessed. The downfall of the usa from within. Kruschev is laughing in his grave

    July 28, 2011 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  4. ric

    Message from me to ALL Republfools EVERYWHERE GFY like there's no tomorrow, and then eat my azzz!

    July 28, 2011 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  5. Jay

    From his personal problems, I highly doubt the he is an expert on financial issues nor does he understand what "normal" Americans are going through.

    July 28, 2011 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain

    @Sank: A further thought, Mathew 25:40:

    The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

    July 28, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  7. heliocracy

    Folks like Walsh don't understand that the proper management of a capitalism, and getting things done in the American political system, are both much more complicated than he thinks they are, and much more complicated than his moronic tea party masters think they are. McCain's at least been there long enough to figure it out. High-school civics teaches you about as much about government and economics as high school math teaches you about fractal geometry. There's no other area of knowledge I know of where so many people think they're experts without knowing 90% of what they need to to even have an informed opinion. Ever wonder why establishment Republicans dread the growing voice of the Tea Party? Well now you know.

    July 28, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  8. Palin 2112

    So, a war hero who admits that the TEA party (Traitors Embracing Anarchy) doesn't understand the seriousness or the consequences of not raising the debt limit gets criticized by a DEADBEAT dad ? This guy should be impeached from congress and thrown in jail for non payment of child support. I've seen guys jailed for owing a few thousand. This turd owes over $100,000 in child support and now he wants to ruin the credit rating of the USA?
    I don 't give a spit what party this guy belongs to, he has NO business representing ANYBODY in congress ( the insane excluded).

    July 28, 2011 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  9. Vegas Blue

    Rep Walsh is the one with no clue here. Starting a pissing contest with Sen McCain is just more proof!

    July 28, 2011 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  10. truthman

    Harry Reid shafted the country when he got the healthcare bill passed. Now he is doing it again by promising to kill any bill by the Republicans, not even letting them come to a vote on the floor.

    Cap, Cut and Balance will never pass with Harry Reid in the way. we are doomed to spend more and more; raising the debt ceiling this time won't be the last.

    July 28, 2011 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  11. J Johnson

    Mr. Hobbit,

    Get caught up on your child support will be extremely difficult next year when you are working at McD...oh and yes, I will have fries with my sandwich.

    July 28, 2011 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  12. wild bill

    What a doofus ! This guy, with his financial history, is gonna shape our economy ?

    July 28, 2011 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  13. truthman

    We will continue to borrow our kid's inheritance 'till there's none left.

    July 28, 2011 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  14. Rick

    I think it's this clown that doesn't understand. The debt is very bad, for sure but it can be fixed. But not increasing the debt ceiling is many times worse. I love how these clowns jump up and down trying to scare people about the debt while accusing people of fear mongering over the ceiling. Do they not even realize how ridiculous they sound?

    July 28, 2011 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  15. C.hurd

    Tea Party is the equivalent of American destruction, all of you voters that got the wool pull over your head I hope you get exactly what’s coming to you. A lot of people are going to suffer from this, and that is the saddest thing about this situation; it’s sad that the neo-cons and the House are continuing to hold the Country hostage.
    It’s time for Americans to rise against the communist that continue to take us into everlasting peril.
    Demands on D.C
    1. Every single incumbent has 24hrs to resign.
    2. Pass the sale of legal marijuana.
    3. Tax big business; no more outsourcing overseas.
    4. No more vacations on the expense of taxpayers.
    5. Close all borders for one decade.
    6. Require all illegal’s to serve a eight year commitment; upon successful completion citizenship will be granted.

    July 28, 2011 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |

    So he is divorced and owes his wife money, had his home foreclosed on, struggles financially, unpaid fines, etc. And whose fault is this? He thinks fixing the government will fix HIS personal problems? Sounds like he wants some government handouts.

    July 28, 2011 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  17. independent voter

    This dead beat dad is gonna help solve americas problems??? who's gonna help solve his? Stupid teabaggers!

    July 28, 2011 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  18. Tired of Me Party

    This guy is talking about debt ceiling but he can't even pay his child support. How about that 100k plus you owe to your kids?? Oh that's right no one understands. We, the people who elect you, we understand... We understand you can't keep up your end of the bargin when you got married and had kids that you would be fiscally responsible for them. We understand you can be foreclosed on 2 properties but still can afford to loan yourself 35k. Shameful Sir Shame on you.

    July 28, 2011 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  19. carlos

    how can we let about 200 thousand of the hobbits dictate what is good for this great country?????????....beyond me, well, fellow AMERICANS, let us show those 200 thousand parasites the bridge to nowhere.......

    July 28, 2011 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  20. PGelsman

    Not the 100% cure, but it would certainly help if we had TERMS LIMITS!

    2 terms each for anybody elected to public office.

    July 28, 2011 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  21. USAIsDead

    Great. A dead-beat Dad is holding the USA hostage. Gotta love our government.

    July 28, 2011 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  22. Sherry

    The Republicans in the House keep saying Obama has no plan as thought he is suppose to come up with something. Article II of the Constitution lays out the duties of the Executive Branch. Nowhere is it written that the Executive Branch of the US writes or plans "bills". The Constitution says that the Legislative Branches write the "bills", therefore the Republicans in the House of Rep. should read the Constitution in order to know what THEIR duties are which is to come up with a "plan" to be sent to the Senate. The job of the President is to sign it or veto it. Read the Constitution to see the job descriptions of the three Branches of the Government.
    I repeat the Constitution DOES NOT t say that the President WRITES or PLANS bills that become laws – The House and the Senate do that!!!

    July 28, 2011 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  23. Cyberdad

    What you have with Walsh is a case study of the dangers of a lazy, uninformed electorate. I grew up in Joe Walsh's district and currently live less than ten miles away, so I was able to follow the campaign quite closely. For those wondering how this man got elected, I'll try to give you a thumbnail of this comedy (or more correctly tragedy) of errors....

    This Chicago suburban district had been represented by Melissa Bean....a conservative democrat who took loads of heat on a regular basis from labor unions, other special interest groups, and other "party regulars" for frequently breaking ranks with her party's leadership. In so-doing, by most yardsticks, her independent bent meant she was doing a great job representing the her traditionally conservative district. Fast forward to the 2010 Republican Primary. What happened there was that Walsh squeaked in with Tea party backing, while his arguably far more qualified opponents split the "traditional" or perhaps one could say "thoughtful" vote.

    Now comes the "under informed voter" part. Walsh's shenanigans were were widely publicized and roundly panned by the Chicago and suburban press. The papers....who routinely endorse more republican candidates than democrats....roundly lambasted Walsh and strongly endorsed Bean. All the while the stories kept coming out about Walsh's personal and financial missteps. Problem is, while these stories got lots of play, Chicago and adjacent portions of Northern Illinois is a major metropolitan area and the press has lots of races to cover. Statewide hotly-contested races for Governor, U.S. Senate and other offices get more attention. The Walsh fiascoes...and there were quite a few...largely never made the front page. Not helping matters was that the national party had long wanted to take back this seat...apparently at any a lot of national money was funneled into the race. Between that, the strong emotional push from the tea party, and general apathy/disdain for incumbents...the stage was set for a grossly unqualified candidate of dubious reputation and character to be elected to the U.S. Congress. My view is if a mere fraction of those who cast their ballots had done their homework instead of voted on pure emotion, this embarasment of a candidate would've never been elected. As an independent, my view is that this district has gone from being one of the nation's best-served to one of the worst.

    July 28, 2011 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  24. waj66

    Walsh is actually one of the lesser known hobbits... T Baggins.

    July 28, 2011 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  25. jake

    I find it curious that a guy who has problems keeping his own finances inorder thinks this makes him qualified to keep the American budget in order. What is the synonym for laughable, absurd and preposterous... oh yea... ridiculous.

    July 28, 2011 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
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