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. Mike Anderson

    It would be nice to know what part of the country Congressman Inglis has been representing. Your article fails one of the fundamental rules of journalism by failing to tell us "Where".

    July 9, 2010 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. Carlos

    AMEN. Nothing really revelatory here, but "amen" anyway.

    Really a shame that politicians such as Bennett and Inglis have to face loss of their political postions within their party before they can drop the b.s. facade and speak plainly.

    Though, I suppose b.s. and doubletalk are synonymous with politics and politicians... and that goes for Repubs, Dems, and the globe.

    July 9, 2010 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  3. Nick

    One of the very few Republicans with a sane mind?

    He joins Charlie Crist and Gov. Schwarzenegger, and that's about it.

    July 9, 2010 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  4. JJ

    Good, it is about time that someone, especially a Republican, to say enough is a enough and call those "leaders" as nothing more than fear mongers.

    July 9, 2010 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  5. ETM

    Say what you will about the always hapless Democrats, but at least they are sane. The GOP is full of crazies these days.

    July 9, 2010 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  6. He's Only Jealous, Cause Sarah Has A Huge Fan Base . . .

    Of Willing Marks.

    July 9, 2010 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  7. Lilarose

    My parents went through the Depression and WWII and my mom just passed away in May at age 96. She was a Republican until George Bush, Sr. ran for office and she decided she no longer believed in the Republican party's "platform." She was still interested in politics up to the time of her death and felt the Republicans today are sleaze bags. Mom couldn't belive how much the party has changed in her lifetime.

    July 9, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  8. independent

    As much as I would like to suggest that you, Mr. Inglis, leave the Dark Side and come over to the light. 🙂 It may be more important for America for you to take back the Republican Party.

    McCarthism did not take over America, though it held some sway for a period of time. America rejected McCarthism. Republicans must reject the Palinism, Limbaughism, Beckism, Hannitism, Savagism, and the Levinisms, that are pulling the GOP closer and closer to the edge.

    July 9, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  9. Dan

    Sour grapes from a sore loser. Whah whah whah ....

    July 9, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  10. Riley

    Don't blame Palin for your loss!!!! Look in the mirror and re-evaluate YOURSELF!

    July 9, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  11. Lissa

    They all know they are wrong. You'd have to be insane to actually believe the fear-based, non-factual, nationalistic stuff the Republicans are told to spout. You can tell by the looks on their faces that they are embarassed to be lying. I feel sorry for this guy who served for 17 years only to be outed by some evangelical. Their only solution? Only fund the military.... make it larger....kill infidels...get bigger guns....they are bad if they are different than me....all white christian nation is good...all other people are bad.....get bigger guns. (No wonder they finally tell the truth once they are out of the cult...)

    July 9, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  12. Larry

    We all know Palin is a maggot on society, as are the teabaggers in general.

    I respect this guy for speaking up and telling the truth.

    July 9, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  13. Dale

    "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,"

    Wow. I couldn't have said it better myself.

    July 9, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  14. stevegee

    "Inglis served in Congress since 1993" ... It's time to work in the private sector, Bobby. Our founding fathers never intended for there to be career politicians and a ruling political class. That's what we fought a revolution against!

    Wake up people! In November, vote American, vote Republican.

    July 9, 2010 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  15. Mike

    This man should hold his head up high for telling the truth. Yes, he lost the race but he didn't lose his integrity. He is the type of man that will go down in history for doing the right thing as opposed to the most expedient . I salute you, a true American patriot.

    July 9, 2010 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  16. obama victim

    oh boo hoo...you loser....you lost because you are out of touch with most Conservatives.........mu God...how pathetic

    July 9, 2010 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  17. wayuphere

    Maybe I was wrong........not ALL GObPer's are totally ignorant. This man surprised me!

    July 9, 2010 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  18. johnrj08

    It's too bad Republicans like Inglis only find their spine after they've lost the election. The time for courage is when you're in the midst of battle, not when you're at home telling war stories.

    July 9, 2010 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  19. Obama lover

    WOW! A republican that speaks the truth AND makes sense!

    July 9, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  20. Dumbasrocks [R]s

    Inglis and Bennet are "right on" with their analyses. The problem is, where was this frank analysis BEFORE they lost their primaries? Apparently they want to save their party from sliding into the Dark Ages, but only if they can do so quietly.....or only if they lose.

    So now the question that is left begging: How many other [R] congresspeople and party leaders realize what's so obviously wrong with their party, but are too cowardly to speak up about it for fear of demogogic retribution from Limbaugh, Palin and the tea-baggers? To have the direction of your [R] party defined by such nincompoops, and to be so cowardly as to not fight back, is really the death of civilization in your [R] part of the world. You guys deserve exactly what your going to get.....unfortunately it is likely to affect the rest of us too, and we do not deserve it. We review the daily news, we see the uncontrolled rantings from the right, the uber-partisan fairytales spewed as fact, and so we know you are idiots, and we are left dumbfounded by your continuing self-induced delusion and ignorance.

    July 9, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  21. mein NH

    Death Panels * Jails & all the other BS by the


    all the tea-baggers believe it..

    July 9, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  22. The Unsub

    Sarah Pailin has been shielded by the media from answering real questions from the opposition.

    She does not represent the mainstream ideals. Her "hockey mom" rouse has run its course. She is simply a cheerleader.

    July 9, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  23. AK

    Wow – one honest R voice trying to state facts and be heard out of a mob of Repugnants holding torches and pitchforks! Now why am I not surprised the Repug-party has no interest in supporting him?

    Here's why – Because majority of Repugnant party members make a big show of caring for the "average-Joes" to get their vote and behind close doors – hob-nob with the corporate elite and agree to lower their taxes.

    Little do these "average Joes" know that just like the Bush era – Repugs would make sure that the "average Joe" would pay more taxes than the corporations do. And that the corporations would get away with more lay-offs and shipping jobs abroad than on any democratic govt's watch. And this ignorance of the "average Joes" is just what the repugnant party is banking on.
    Hey- maybe you Repug sheep need to polish your Math/stats. Oh wait a minute – that was your most hated/poor-performance subject in school – wasn't it?
    Coincidence? I think not!

    July 9, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  24. Remember the Alamo

    You're an idiot Inglis. Palin was right. When medicare has to approve anyone for major surgery. They determine that person's age and the type of disease before approving any of it. An what they approve most surgeons will not accept. Therfore if this is not death panels then you tell me what is. I HATE IGNORANCE. EVEN WHEN IT COME FROM A SO CALLED REPUBLICAN. YOU EXPECT IT FROM LIBERALS FOR THEY ARE ALL IDIOTS. TAKE IT FROM THIS ONE WHO WAS A DEMOCRAT FOR FIFTY YEARS. BUTWHEN THERE IS NO MORE GOD iIN GOVERNMENT AND A LIEING SNEAK IN THE WHITE HOUSE THEN THAT IS ENOUGH FOR ME. I AM OUTTA OF HERE. AMERICA BETTER WAKE UP BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE. NOW OBAMA HAS OKAYED THE THE MUSLIM BUILDING A MOSQUES IN THE SAME BLOCK AS GROUND ZERO IN NEW YORK. IS THAT NOT A SLAP IN YOUR FACE.

    July 9, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  25. Molly Weasley

    Please - more adults in the Republican Party! I don't mind when politicians of whatever stripe criticize their own. But all we've been getting from the GOP in the last two years has been Palin-esque, tea party garbage. Including the "death panel" nonsense, which won the "lie of the year" from the nonpartisan Politifact.com

    Hey, Republicans! You want to regain power? Listen to this guy, and Bennett, too. Act like you have some brains for a change.

    July 9, 2010 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
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