Rep. Terry was late to hearing, and his excuse necessitated an apology
April 1st, 2014
10:22 PM ET
8 months ago

Rep. Terry was late to hearing, and his excuse necessitated an apology

Washington (CNN) - Rep. Lee Terry of Nebraska had to issue an apology Tuesday after remarks he made explaining his late arrival to a hearing on the botched General Motors recall.

“I’m sorry for being late but my plane was canceled for mechanical reasons, probably an ignition switch,” Terry said to the committee.

Faulty ignition switches in GM vehicles are thought to be responsible for the death of 13 people.

GM CEO Mary Barra, who testified today in the same hearing, said was “deeply sorry” to the families of victims, as well as those injured as a result of the defective part.

Terry's own apology statement said the eight-term Republican congressman had “had no intention of being insensitive.”

“I think everyone can understand what it’s like to say something and not be able to take it back.” He said.

Terry is familiar with not being able to take back off-the-cuff comments. The congressman found himself the subject of criticism during the partial government shutdown in October of 2013.

When asked if he planned to take his paycheck, Terry told reporters at the time “dang straight,” then elaborated, saying, “Giving our paycheck away when you still worked and earned it? That's just not going to fly.”

The partial government shutdown lasted 16 days, and 850,000 federal employees were furloughed at its peak.

Terry released a statement after those remarks, saying he was “ashamed” of his comments.

Tuesday, Terry admitted that his comments regarding his tardiness “detracted away from the very important substance of today’s hearing on the GM recall,” and said there was no excuse. “I said something I shouldn’t have and I apologize,” he said.

Terry chairs the House Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade subcommittee, that has jurisdiction over vehicle recall and any legislation would most likely start in that panel.


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soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. wendel

    sounds like his mind was already made up. A repo with a big mouth how unbelievable .

    April 1, 2014 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  2. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    Lee’s own apology statement said the congressman had “had no intention of being insensitive.”

    This guy should be fired immediately and denied all future benefits because he's a total jerk (insert proper expletives here to describe this royal nutjob).

    April 2, 2014 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  3. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    Lee’s own apology statement said the congressman had “had no intention of being insensitive.”

    What, he thought he was being funny? Hey, did you hear the one about Rep. Terry's mother/father/grandparent/sibling/cousin/dear friend who died recently? No THERE'S some pretty funny stuff!

    April 2, 2014 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  4. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    This is the same guy who had to apologize because he said the following during the government shutdown and why he wouldn't stop taking his salary in solidarity with other federal workers:

    "I've got a nice house and a kid in college, and I'll tell you we cannot handle it. Giving our paycheck away when you still worked and earned it? That's just not going to fly."

    Quite the peach, isn't he?

    April 2, 2014 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  5. Pander Bear

    Are all Republican's completely clueless?

    April 2, 2014 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  6. Thomas

    What an idiot !

    We need more of them in office ?

    April 2, 2014 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  7. Marie MD

    These people are really stu pid and uncaring. No way around it.

    April 2, 2014 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  8. salty dog

    An unfiltered mouth tells no lies. Own it, idiot.

    April 2, 2014 07:18 am at 7:18 am |
  9. Gurgyl

    These idiots need to think twice before they talk. Didn't Toyota recall? Quite normal. Pathetic party of "NO".

    April 2, 2014 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  10. Name jk. Sfl. THE KOCH BROTHERS GOP STOOGES PARTY NEEDS to be VOTED OUT IN NOVEMBER !!!!

    Another GOP clown that can't relate to the average person and DOESNT DESERVE REALECTION !!!! Replace him with a DEMOCRATE in November and get rid of these GOP losers!!!!!

    April 2, 2014 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  11. wwf

    Seems this person like most GOP have a bad case of foot in mouth.

    April 2, 2014 07:43 am at 7:43 am |
  12. salty dog

    Like it or not GM is an American company, that employs hundreds of thousands if good jobs, precisely why the gop hates them, union and all that, you would think they would love such a large corporation, but, they are voluntarily involved with unions, workers rights and all that stuff they hate so much.when will you be willing to admit they want to destroy our country, that's the sad truth.

    April 2, 2014 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
  13. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House

    Typical republican. Thinks everything is a joke.

    April 2, 2014 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  14. reality check

    He was only trying to be humorous. No story here Ticker. How about a real story like all of the illegals being caught and 75% are allowed to walk?

    April 2, 2014 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  15. Rudy NYC

    “I said something I shouldn’t have and I apologize,” he said.

    I'll give him credit for not tainting his apology with a "if anyone was offended" conditional clause.

    April 2, 2014 08:17 am at 8:17 am |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Well it was a joke, but a very poor one especially to the families of the 13 people that GM's faulty ignition switch killed.
    Oy vey.

    April 2, 2014 08:19 am at 8:19 am |