September 18th, 2009
06:43 PM ET
12 years ago

Wilson says he's the 'number one target' of attack

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Embattled Rep. Joe Wilson said Friday his congressional outburst was his "town hall moment."

"I have to give credit to my son Alan," who is running for South Carolina attorney general. "He said, 'Dad I know you, I know what happened. You were there on the House floor and you had a town hall moment.' And that was it," said the Republican congressman.

Speaking in his hometown of Columbia, South Carolina for the first time since shouting "you lie" at President Obama, Wilson said that moment has made him the prime target of attack.

"It was speaking at the wrong place, wrong time," Wilson said. "And now, I am the number one target of Washington Democrats, the number one target of MoveOn, the number one target of ACORN."

Wilson called himself a "gentleman" for immediately contacting the White House to apologize, and commended the president for disagreeing with the sentiment that his outburst spurred from racism.

"I appreciate very much President Barack Obama has indicated this is not correct," Wilson said of the claims that he is racist. "...A number of people have all indicated that this truly we need to be discussing the issues and not (descend) into the level of name calling," he added.

South Carolinians on hand for Wilson's homecoming told CNN congressional correspondent Brianna Keilar Friday they "weren't impressed with (Wilson's) outburst" - but that they agree with his sentiment.

"Let's close the book on last week," said Wilson. "Let's look ahead to work together for real health insurance reform."

The House voted Tuesday to formally admonish Wilson for yelling out in Congress.

Filed under: Joe Wilson
soundoff (146 Responses)
  1. HUGO

    You Go Joe! Your speaking out made these spin masters of deceit address the illegal alien aspect of any healthcare bill that may actually end up getting through.

    September 18, 2009 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  2. A.B.

    This guy is an idiot and should move on back to South Carolina where he belongs!! The nation needs to move on away from the subject of Joe Wilson and towards the subject of healthcare reform. Mr. Wilson deserves no more attention than he is getting now. He is an embarassment and a distraction.

    September 18, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  3. No more name-calling!!!

    If Joe Wilson will stop calling himself a "gentleman", then the rest of us will stop calling him what he really is...

    September 18, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  4. Babs

    I don't agree with his outburst or his sentiment.

    Republicans are taking the party right down the tube each and every day. I don't think that they could screw up anything more than they already have. If you think making everything President Obama does a wrong will get you into office....think again. It's not going to happen.

    September 18, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  5. Limbaugh is a liberal

    Oh, poor Wilson. Suddenly he is the martyr of a vast left-wing conspiracy because he dared speak up! And it's not as if he's using his outburst as a leverage to raise millions of dollars in campaign money, or flood airwaves by going on interviews and holding press conferences all the time...

    September 18, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  6. MLH

    Let's not lose sight of the fact that this self-styled 'gentleman' shouted 'You lie' at the President of the United States during an address to a joint session of Congress. I don't know if he is guilty of racism. He is guilty of bad manners and a lack of self control, and has compounded the original incident by his pseudo apology which basically read – 'I'm sorry but Obama really did lie,' and by refusing to recognize that he owes an apology to the House for behaving so poorly.

    September 18, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  7. ib

    Why are they only after Wilson and not going after Rangel and Frank and the others who have done much worse. The hyprocrites are using Wilson to cover for their own and keep everyones mind on something else that's why.

    September 18, 2009 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  8. Kate in SW Fla

    This creep is reveling in his notoriety, too arrogant to be ashamed of being held up in the same photo with Kanye West. Eeeew to both of them. You are just trash.

    September 18, 2009 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  9. Anonymous

    if wilson thoght it was so profounded of him he would have went on air and said i was out of lineand i apologize to the americainpeople for my rude outburst but instead he did the opposite and said look how much money i have raised for mycampaign i donot understand why people do not think for themselves, they let hear say do their thinking and miguided people who have hate im their heart.

    September 18, 2009 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  10. peggyledbetter

    A few words for Joe...your political games are over!

    September 18, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  11. Susan

    He would never have appologized, it was his own party that told him to call the WH and appologize......he's no Gentleman.........he will continue to be the #1 target of all of us that do not support his or the GOP's Racist ways

    September 18, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  12. Kmich

    You're a liar, Joe. You should have the biggest target on your back. The only reason you called the President (as you stated, Boehner stated and has been confirmed) was that the GOP leadership TOLD you to appologize. Not only that, but your apology was a non-apology. You will go down in history as the first person to shout at the President while addressing the entire Congress.

    You should be impeached or at the very least voted out of office. You're a disgrace to your state and our great country.

    September 18, 2009 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  13. Deuce

    Become a Twit. Join the rest of them on Twitter. They cant think of anything better. I can... A pint of Bitter...

    September 18, 2009 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  14. Peter

    A cow is a cow what ever angle you look at it!

    September 18, 2009 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  15. LouAz

    #1 target ? You worked for it. You practiced for it. You did it.
    You deserve it !
    It never entered your mind (sic) to apoligize to the Citizens of the United States of America, did it ? You insulted all of us when you couldn't control yourself. Well, your fair game now, Joey boy !
    Do you still wet the bed ?

    September 18, 2009 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  16. Just the facts

    Does anyone out there really care about this bufoon whose striving to elevate himself to the ranks of mediocrity?

    September 18, 2009 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  17. jaye

    His outburst proves that those republicans at town halls are filled with hate and rage, and filled with lies.
    And we know the lies are being told and spread on fux news.
    Wilson is disgusting...and he ruined his sons chance of getting elected.
    We're sick of the hate, the lies, the racism, and of the shameful republican party.

    September 18, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  18. Steph

    Oh, poor little victim, NOT!

    September 18, 2009 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  19. Mary

    Lies, lies, lies. He was the one to attack and now he is acting like the innocent one. His son does not need to an Attorney General either. Will he call Holden a lie as well?

    September 18, 2009 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  20. LacrosseMom

    Mr. Wilson,

    You asked for it, by DISRESPECTING the President of the United States!

    YOU LIE!

    September 18, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  21. Independent in Missouri

    Let's give ol' Joe some cheese with his whine.

    September 18, 2009 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  22. Winkzilla, Tucson

    If Joe Wilson had a town hall moment, then perhaps he lacks the professional skills needed for his job. He was not speaking at the wrong place, wrong time. He was not speaking at all since he was not the speaker. Rather, he engaged in ignorant emotion over logic and reason. He chose to growl like a vicious animal over civilized behavior.

    September 18, 2009 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  23. The Voice

    Joe Wilson is a racist, he just now knows he will loose his seat in 2010 because of it!

    I did not hear him scream "you lie" to Bush when he said Iraq had "weapons of mass destruction"

    Now we all now that one was the biggest lie in American history, where were you then Mr. Racist Wilson!!

    Oust Wilson in 2010!!

    September 18, 2009 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  24. Ed Niner

    I do not think that J. Wilson's comment were racist, but it is indicative of someone with whom it would be impossible to discuss anything.

    September 18, 2009 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  25. Video Guy

    Why is this clown still a member of the House? The shoe guy got jail for his action against Bush.

    September 18, 2009 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
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