September 30th, 2009
06:07 PM ET
13 years ago

Grayson remains defiant on 'die quickly' remarks

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Rep. Alan Grayson finally apologized - but not to Republicans."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Under fire for his claim that the GOP health care plan calls for sick people to "die quickly," Rep. Alan Grayson finally apologized - but not to Republicans.

"Last night, I gave a speech, and I'm not going to recount everything I said, but after that speech, several Republicans asked me to apologize," the Florida Democrat said in a defiant speech on the House floor Wednesday. "I would like to apologize."

Grayson then pointed to a Harvard study that reported more than 44,000 Americans die yearly because they lack health insurance. "That is ten times more than the number of Americans who have died in Iraq and who died in 9/11," he said. "But that was just once. This is every single year. That's right. Every single year. Take a look at this. Read it and weep."

"I apologize to the dead and their families that we haven't voted sooner to end this holocaust in America," he concluded.

House Republicans initially wanted to introduce a resolution condemning Grayson for breaching House decorum with his remarks on Tuesday night, but the resolution's sponsor, Rep. Tom Price of Georgia, decided on Wednesday not to introduce the resolution and instead asked for Grayson to apologize to House GOP leadership.

Grayson refused to do so, and Republicans were quick to blast him for it.

"Alan Grayson not only refuses to apologize, he is doubling down on his despicable remarks and he is dragging his party with him," said Ken Spain, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee, which is targeting Grayson in next year's midterm election. "This is an individual who has established a pathological pattern of unstable behavior. He is derailing the national debate on healthcare reform and embarrassing his constituents as a result.

Spain also called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to "end her silence and demand an apology."

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soundoff (318 Responses)
  1. jona

    This guy.. and the liberals who are praising him.. are working with such thin, thin material here.. it is laughable..


    September 30, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  2. Simmy

    Since when does the truth warrant an apology? It was disrespectful and classless of joe the heckler to defile the position of which he holds......Rep. Grayson's reality bit hard and Republicans didn't like it....They are allergic to truth.....It's their kryptonite......

    Ups to you Rep. Grayson.....Finally someone with the real stuff.......

    September 30, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  3. Seth

    Awesome comeback! Finally a Democrat willing to return some punches. 44,000 is the new rallying cry!!

    September 30, 2009 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  4. Efrem

    I love you Grayson for saying it as it is. Especially your second one, supported with the Harvard study, was marvelous and convincing. Well said!

    September 30, 2009 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  5. Ginny Howard

    Yeah Grayson!!!!!
    I voted for you, but was really luke warm about you until today. Today on CNN you stood up for something you felt strongly about and did not back down.

    September 30, 2009 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  6. just truth

    Republicans demand a formal apology on the house floor "NOW". sounds funny but very familiar doesn't it dumos?

    September 30, 2009 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  7. Howard

    So, Did all these people die because Medicare and Medicaid (the 2 programs that Obama keeps holding up as shining examples) failed them or what? Seems to me this is a perfect example of why we should not let the government meddle in our healthcare.

    September 30, 2009 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  8. rin

    this is what i am talking about!!! Go grayson.... CNN you should be ashamed of yourselves.... i mean the situation room! i never seen any of you all (the pundits) demand a apology from any republican that has lied over and over again about provision in the healthcare reform bill!!!......... you are phony pundits... I am glad grayson stood his ground he is right.... what the heck was the republicans doing about healthcare 8 years ago.... where was the republicans priority on health care reform 8 years ago... hello the repubs did nothing!!!!!!!!!!! go grayson.... i just donated

    September 30, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  9. Jim

    Right, the dems want you to "Die Slowly", which is what hppens when you have to wait for care, as in Canada.

    September 30, 2009 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  10. Habte

    So, GOP w.i.n.g.n.u.t.s can go around calling the president's plan a "death panel" and comparing the president to Hitler (responsible for the Holocaust) but when it comes to statements by a democrat, they are outraged? How does this make any sense? The GOP plan leaves millions uninsured which 1) for those that can make it to the emergency room the taxpayer ends up paying for anyways. 2) Those that can't make it to emergency rooms DIE. So, isn't the congressman correct?

    September 30, 2009 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  11. Ken

    Good for him, it's good to finally see a Dem with some cajones stand up to the party of bullies, obstructionists, and liars.

    September 30, 2009 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  12. Mike D. in San Diego

    Wow! Grayson just became my personal hero. Why aren't there more politicians with this kind of spine?

    September 30, 2009 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  13. Randy, San Francisco

    Enough is enough. Incivility is unbecoming to both parties. One of the reasons the American people is confused about health care reform is the level of debate has degenerated to 15 seconds of meaningless sound bites. Also, the misinformation and propoganda disseminated as facts by political talk show entertainers, left and right, is simply disgraceful.

    September 30, 2009 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  14. SNAPPA

    Its funny all those posts no here that are against the congressman seem to have the EXACT same talking points as fix news or Limbaugh ver batem. Listen, think for yourslef will ya. Get your own facts and stop listening to people who could care less about you and your family. The only thing you are supporting with this rhetoric are the mega insurance companies. So tell me, what have they done for you?

    September 30, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  15. annie against biased news

    this person should have cleaned the spittle out of the corner of his mouth.

    September 30, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  16. Ralph

    There is so much support for Grayson in these comments. It appears that the number of non-tax paying, out of work liberals, living with mommy and daddy and sitting at their computers all day, must be growing.

    September 30, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  17. JLS

    Just saw this loon on the Situation Room. This guy makes Joe Wilson sound credible, and I didn't think that was possible. He'll be out of office in less than 2 years, sweeping up in Disney World.

    September 30, 2009 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  18. Dan, TX

    This guy is out of touch with his constituents. Anyway he will get his lesson and he will be out of congress forever come 2010. Those who write here in support of him are out of their mind. It is better if you all go to Russia and be socialist. We will never allow America to become socialist country.

    September 30, 2009 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  19. MishaJohn

    The GOP really hates it when their tactics are used against them.

    September 30, 2009 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  20. R

    Good for him. I hope he never apologizes for telling the truth. The republicans don't care about the average person's health care needs. They just want to tell you that you have to go full term with your pregency, you can't have counseling for end of life issues, our Country can't use testing involving stem cell research, and that as a Country, it's better to spend billions on a misguided war than to spend money on insuring children, elderly and the rest of us in between.

    September 30, 2009 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  21. Tom

    Republicans dish out lies galore, then play the victim when somebody calls them on their lack of solutions to any of our problems. Rock on, Grayson! We need more people to stand up to the GOP like this. Tell the truth. Call them out for lying. Tell it like it is. Then watch them cry like a stuck pig because they are nothing more than schoolyard bullies. As soon as somebody stands up to them, they freak out because they know reality is not on their side.

    September 30, 2009 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  22. Butch Dillon

    FINALLY, a real American speaks! Grayson is the new platinum brand of the democratic party. He deserves presidential recognition and support.

    September 30, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  23. Sam

    How easily people forget the big picture, that both DEMs and Reps in the house and Senate get the best Health CARE Package of all. Its a pity that we Americans that vote to put these people in office, are not receiving THEIR package. Are we any less important? You can bicker all you want about who should apologize but frankly in the end you and me are not going to get Their sweet deal.

    September 30, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  24. Buddy Gilmour

    I like Grayson, he's got some fire. But you won't truly understand this issue until you know someone who didn't seek care because they couldn't afford it and then died from something that was completely curable.

    September 30, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  25. Mich

    BRAVO!!! Finally, someone stood up to the Republican bullies! Grayson said the truth! And the Republicans can't stand it!

    September 30, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
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