July 9th, 2010
03:03 PM ET
13 years ago

Inglis goes after Palin: 'Lowest form of political leadership'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/06/08/art.inglis.gi.jpg caption ="GOP Rep. Bob Inglis criticized Sarah Palin and his own party in an interview with the Associated Press published Friday."](CNN) - Republican Rep. Bob Inglis, who last month lost a primary battle to retain his seat, is now taking aim at some members of his own party - the second ousted Republican to express frustration with the GOP in as many weeks.

In an interview with the Associated Press and confirmed to CNN by his office, Inglis targets the "death panels" phrase made famous by Sarah Palin when the former Alaska governor inaccurately claimed the Democratic-backed health care legislation would ration health care for the elderly.

"There were no death panels in the bill … and to encourage that kind of fear is just the lowest form of political leadership. It's not leadership. It's demagoguery," said Inglis, who lost his primary challenge to conservative Trey Gowdy by 42 points last month and faced heavy criticism for voting in favor of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) in 2009.

In a series of Facebook posts last summer, Palin repeatedly suggested the health care legislation would amount to rationing and coined the phrase "death panels" to suggest government bureaucrats, not doctors, would determine the type of health care one receives.

The de-bunked phrase was quickly repeated by detractors of the bill and is credited with spurring heated opposition to the measure.

Inglis said such words amount to "preying on [voter's] fears."

"I think we have a lot of leaders that are following those [television and talk radio] personalities and not leading," he said. "What it takes to lead is to say, 'You know, that's just not right.'"

The comments from Inglis, who has served in Congress since 1993, come two weeks after Bob Bennett, - the Republican senator who was cast aside by his party in a primary earlier this year - suggested the GOP is devoid of fresh ideas.

"As I look out at the political landscape now, I find plenty of slogans on the Republican side, but not very many ideas," Bennett told The Ripon Society, a Republican think tank last month.

"The concern I have is that ideology and a demand for absolute party purity endangers our ability to govern once we get into office," Bennett also said.

Filed under: Bob Inglis • GOP • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (262 Responses)
  1. usualone

    Why are these kinds of Republicans waiting so long to speak up? Has someone put muzzles on them? Once one is fired it is easier to speak up; but these types need to speak up earlier. It may be to the Democrats' advantage that they are quiet but it certainly is bad for the country. There is freedom of speech and then there is freedom of speech. We need to hear from these folk of reason too.

    July 9, 2010 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  2. guidi82

    you lose by 42 points and you blame it on a comment Sarah Palin made? That's pathetic.

    July 9, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  3. tstorm

    Inglis couldn't be more right, unfortunately Palin only gained her popularity with conservatives because Republicans are basically "sheeple". The more outrageous and far flung right wing nut case you are the more Republicans seem to go for it. And out rises Sarah Palin. A woman who can't find Canada on a world map! Good luck with that....

    July 9, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  4. L.A.

    A reasonable Republican? No wonder his party rejected him.

    July 9, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  5. garc

    It's sad that they can only tell the truth after they lose their bids for election/reelection...but all the same, I do appreciate that he has the guts to do it.

    July 9, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  6. Bruce

    This guy and Bob Bennett are weasels...why didn't they come out before they lost to condemn this strategy?!?!?!? And this is coming from a Dem-liberal-lefty.

    July 9, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  7. Paul from Phoenix

    Sour grapes

    July 9, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  8. Eloise

    Yes, Republicans prefer falsehoods, i.e. lies, and fear using such phrases as "death panels" instead of honesty and cooperation. Says much about America, doesn't it?

    July 9, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  9. John

    Now that he's free he can call it as he sees it.

    July 9, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  10. Dave

    Hilarious-two Republicans start making intelligent statements and they're voted out. Another step in fully becoming the 'party of the stupid'

    July 9, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  11. American Patriot - a "real" tea partier

    It came from Sarah Palin, and she's an idiot.

    July 9, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  12. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Brainless Palin is the scum on the scum.

    July 9, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  13. wbn

    No, he's wrong and CNN is wrong. Palin did not "inaccurately" speak about "death panels." The new health bill is clear that givernment officials will be involved in the "group" making life and death decisions, determining if the patient's age and condition merit the expense of hitherto normal treatments and procedures. Americans won't believe it until they personally lose loved ones that they and their family doctors would have chosen to treat. Wake up, America! Quit believing the mainstream media!

    July 9, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  14. anotherGDlefty

    Maybe if these guys had the stones to speak out earlier, thier party may not have been hijacked by the nuts.

    They were just fine with it all until they are out. Now with nothing left to lose, they decide to tell the truth.


    July 9, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  15. Johnny DC

    Wrong. The lowest form of leadership is intentionally sabotaging your own party's chances of winning elections, essentially disallowing someone who shares 85% of your beliefs from governing and promoting your opponent, with whom you share 5% of your beliefs.

    It's incredible that this man even pretends to care about his constituents or about the country in general. I'd like to know. I'd like to ask him what good he thinks coming out with these kinds of statements does for the advancement of his "true" beliefs, or at least what he pretended to believe in while he represented his district..

    July 9, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  16. Peter M

    Too bad he figured out Repblican racism and divisiveness too late. He is out and the bigots now run the GOP, led by the meally-mouthed skunk called Palin.

    July 9, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  17. Dan G.

    There will be rationing determined by a panel of administrators, call it what you want but don't imply Obama's Healthcare Plan won't end up preventing some from receiving needed services and ultimately dying from a lack of care.

    July 9, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  18. BubblingBush

    Palin is a tool, quitter and shameful.

    July 9, 2010 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  19. Clint, Wa.

    Thank you Mr. Inglis for speaking the truth and letting people know what kind of people they really are.

    July 9, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  20. geecee

    This guy is correct. The sane Republicans are getting defeated and the whackjobs are getting elected by the tbaggers who listen to the annointed one that talks about "pink elephants" and "mama grizzlies." What is she in third grade?? How much more ridiculous can Sarah Palin get before the braindead women of the Republican Party have had enough of her nonsense? She is an airhead, buffoon, moron, idiot, dimwit, nitwit, dingbat, oh, I'm running out of synonyms to describe this total empty-headed phony.

    July 9, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  21. Nathan

    He should have spoke out against the likes of Palin before he lost. He had no stomach to take her and her kind on when they were lying about the healthcare bill then why should anyone care what he thinks now. Palin is a toxic virus who will do more harm to her own party than the Democrats. She is still the best weapon the Democrats have.

    July 9, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Floozyusa

    This is Great! A repub with a conscience. Finally people are standing up to Palin's assassination attempts.

    July 9, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  23. Susie

    Keep it coming, Republicans! The sooner this insane woman is stopped in her quest to be a multimillionaire while ruining the country, the better for all of us. And since her supporters can the left who point out her lies "afraid of her" maybe they will lsiten to their own party members.

    July 9, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  24. Nadine

    You go Bob! Why didn't you open your mouth sooner!!!!!

    July 9, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  25. michael MN

    Then why didn't we hear that she was aliying simpleton from ANY ONE on the gop ? But only when you lose

    July 9, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
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