Lone vote cast for keeping term 'lunatic' in federal law
December 5th, 2012
07:18 PM ET
6 years ago

Lone vote cast for keeping term 'lunatic' in federal law

(CNN) - The U.S. House passed a bill Wednesday to do away with the word "lunatic" in federal law with a sole congressman voting against the measure, insisting in Washington the word still has an application.

Three hundred ninety-eight congressmen voted in favor of passing the bill. Thirty two did not vote and one, Rep. Louie Gohmert, a Republican from Texas, voted against the measure, which passed the Senate in May with no opposition.

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The House voted on the bill, aimed at modernizing language referring to the mentally ill, Wednesday morning, just as Congress was leaving for a long weekend and ahead of the looming "fiscal cliff."

"I don't have a problem with lunatic being used in the federal law and apparently I was the only one on the floor here that didn't have a problem using the term lunatic," Gohmert said, in a speech on the House floor criticizing the Obama administration’s budget proposal.

"In fact, in occurred to me, that not only should we not use the term lunatic at a time when we are facing national bankruptcy if we don't get serious about our issues but we should also use the term to identify those who want to continue doing business as usual around this town."

Lawmakers and the public's frustration boils as Washington's continues to show its inability to reach common ground to avoid the fiscal cliff - a series of tax hikes and spending cuts set to go into effect at the beginning of the year if a deal is not struck between the opposing demands of the White House and congressional Republicans.

Gohmert chided President Barack Obama's administration for their opposition to extending the Bush-era tax cuts for the top 2% of earners. Democrats paint the Republicans as holding middle-class incomes hostage for maintaining the Bush-era rates be extended for income of all levels. For their part, Republicans argue for closing loopholes and tax deductions to generate revenue to tame the nation's growing debt as well as reform for the tax code and entitlement programs.

Gohmert reiterated the GOP sentiment, saying wealthy people like Warren Buffett can still use the loopholes and deductions while the middle-income earners cannot.

"That's why we shouldn't eliminate the word lunatic. It really has application around this town," he said.

Filed under: Louie Gohmert
soundoff (177 Responses)
  1. TerryG

    Takes one to know one is the first thing that came to mind but it looks like many people were awake before me. Makes me afraid to even drive through Texas.

    December 6, 2012 08:42 am at 8:42 am |
  2. The Real Tom Paine

    -Rick McDaniel

    People have become too fearful of words.
    Not really, my friend-who-reminds-us-of-an-aft-facing-orifice. You just need a larger vocabulary

    December 6, 2012 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  3. Wake up People!

    So we are headed over the "fiscal cliff" but THIS is important??? What a bunch of LUNATICS we have elected to Congress. They should be ashamed to even show their faces in public.

    These lunatics need to GO!

    December 6, 2012 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  4. michaelmassey2012

    Leave it to a Texas Republican to defend use of a term that has no meaning since we discovered that insanity is not caused by the evil influence of the full moon. Gohmert will never surrender his brave crusade against the pernicious creep of scientific progress.

    December 6, 2012 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  5. v_mag

    He wants to replace "lunatic" with proper Republican term, which is "bat crap crazy".

    December 6, 2012 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  6. Brian

    Figures, a guy from Texas

    December 6, 2012 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  7. dev

    What a Lunatics of the GOP's "lunatic" cliff... lol.

    December 6, 2012 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  8. Fearless Freep

    Next up,
    Republicans will vote on White wine with the fish, or red wine with steak.
    The word LUNATIC describes this party perfectly.

    December 6, 2012 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  9. The Real Tom Paine

    You know something is wrong with a member of Congress when Alan West and Michelle Bachmann exercise better judgement by either abstaining or voting in favor of something.

    December 6, 2012 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  10. Bea Oates

    Yeah! That is why we need a Secret Santa from them! A secret code that will not be broken! That is sooooooo bipolar thiinking! Like Mitt Romney running for President that was a huge joke, another bipolar idea! The law is quite clear when you run for office President of USA claim and discloseure of income especially 2009 bailout money given to you paid to you by Unions from Chrysler and GM bailout account! What Mitt Romney was against the law folks! Do we have double standards for the bipolar who the 2% chose to play there stupid game?

    December 6, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  11. Gurgyl

    It is not me. The person using my space is a lunatic. Well, you all know it–I am a core dem. make it legal on marijuana laws, WA is legal. Know it.

    December 6, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  12. Lynda/Minnesota

    Wake up People!

    So we are headed over the "fiscal cliff" but THIS is important???

    Anyone who actually thinks the Republican controlled Congress dwells on the really important issues deserves going over the cliff. Maybe it will wake them up and force them to take a new and improved double take at who their tax dollars actually does "support" year after year after year. And whether or not these government servants actually deserve THEIR "free stuff".

    December 6, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  13. wiseup

    Wiseup : In other words the south end of a north bound horse

    December 6, 2012 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  14. Kenny K


    I can't believe how many people are so silly as to believe Obama only wants to raise taxes on the 2%. That tax hike will not even make a dent in the deficit. I hope you enjoy the consequences of your vote. I'm only sorry you "lunatics" took the rest of us with you. Yeah, I'll keep the word, a perfect description of an obamavoter.
    A LUNATIC can be used for someone who want something (good road, war, tax break, etc) but doesn't want to pay for it. That describe GOP voters.

    Democrats tax and spend.
    Republicans borrow and spend.

    Which of the two love deficits (i.e, when you borrow, you owe and creat deficit))

    December 6, 2012 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  15. TxLostWolf

    At least thete is no doubt about who is running the asylum.

    December 6, 2012 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  16. onlyfacts

    Data Driven – you are correct, but there are a few of us with intelligence scattered around Texas and it's very frustrating to have to listen to all the lunatics everywhere, everyday in their silly cowboy Halloween costumes. I dream of the day I can finally leave this backwards state and live amongst humans that have evolved beyond the 1800's.

    December 6, 2012 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  17. rs

    It is utterly amazing. The GOP is a gift that just keeps on giving!

    ...and they wonder why they lost the election....

    December 6, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  18. davec.0121

    Louie obviously doesn't want to eliminate the word because he likes to see his name in print so much.

    December 6, 2012 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  19. Lynda/Minnesota


    It is not me.

    Hey Gurgyl. We know it's not you. We're also aware of why that particular person is playing their make believe games by choosing your moniker.

    December 6, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  20. Emerson

    Hey Gomer, we are not "facing national bankruptcy". How do people like this find their way to Congress?

    December 6, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  21. Wake up People!

    @Lynda/Minnesota. How right you are. I have absolutely no idea how some of these people get elected in the first place.

    Pathetic excuses for human beings.

    December 6, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  22. Jack in Florida

    Takes one to know one......he is a lunatic himself!! How he ever got elected boggles my mind, but then again, he is from Texas!!!! And I thought Florida was bad......geesh!!

    December 6, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  23. Rosslaw

    The man obviously has no sense of irony.

    December 6, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  24. Grady

    another shining example of a texas politician...

    December 6, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  25. Sniffit

    Louie "Terror Babies" Gohmert? Wow. This is truly just too funny. I think my head might explode from the irony.

    Sooooo....speaking of lunatics....

    December 6, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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