Republican apologizes for Obama 'idiotic' comment
September 2nd, 2011
07:15 PM ET
10 years ago

Republican apologizes for Obama 'idiotic' comment

Washington (CNN) – U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Illinois, apologized on Friday for calling President Barack Obama “idiotic” while speaking to a group of voters earlier this week.

“That was absolutely stepping over the line and I apologized,” Walsh told CNN's Wolf Bliter on "The Situation Room."

“He’s not an idiot, he is the president of the free world.”

“What I meant to say,” said Walsh, “and I didn't say it very artfully, is the notion of him using his office to call a joint session of Congress to just repackage a few old jobs ideas - that to me is idiotic.”

Walsh called Obama idiotic while speaking to a group of voters in Illinois on August 31.

In a statement on Thursday, Walsh announced that he would not be attending Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress on September 8.

“To me this is nothing but a political move by this president and I simply didn't want to be a pawn in this political theater,” the congressman said.

The White House has said the president will lay out a new jobs plan that he intends to submit to Congress following the speech.

Walsh said he has not yet told House Speaker John Boehner that he will be skipping the speech and has not asked any other representatives to join him.

“I would rather go home ... and talk to small businessmen and women and find out from them what we need to do about this economy,” Walsh said. “And I will bring those ideas back to the president.”

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Filed under: House • Joe Walsh • President Obama • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (151 Responses)
  1. Tony in Maine

    Perhaps it would be best for the country if Walsh stayed home.

    September 3, 2011 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  2. shhhh

    Walsh. You have a president that is trying his best to run this country. You and your friends need to understand that. The level of disrespect your party gives this president is amazingly rediculous. All your republican buddies talk about is tax reform there is no solid idea how to create jobs.. I for one look forward into hearing what a intelligent man has to say. So mR walsh go home

    September 3, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  3. brian

    Isn't this the guy who owes 100k plus in child support. At least he didn't call Obama a deadbeat da.

    September 3, 2011 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  4. Marilynn Bachorik

    The low level to which political discourse has fallen truly saddens me. What's worst is that it works! Once again for being rude, Joe Walsh, this rather inconsequential congressman, gets headlines.

    September 3, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  5. Donkey Party

    Recall this Anarchist asshole immediately. The total disrespect by the GOP toward the office of the President is unprecedented. They should all be tried and shot for treason. Best savings in goverment I can think of, is eradicate all the GOP vermin.

    September 3, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  6. Ricardo09

    He spoke the truth! This administration has done nothing to create jobs; The type of jobs he wants to create at our expense are "short-term" jobs. Construction jobs are for the duration of the specific task. We need to fix the underlying problem of fixing the economy.

    Construction jobs are properly the result of a robust economy. To treat it as a "cure" is wrong. the lack of construction jobs is the result of a lackluster economy.

    Create a full employment society by reducing government taxation, eliminating the 1000's of nonsense government regulations, and brining back from overseas the 1,000, 000 jobs that have been lost.

    September 3, 2011 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  7. Jack V

    This is coming from a man who is being sued for back child support. I've heard in person he is charismatic & gives good speech. But it bodes bad for our country when nit wits like this get elected to public office.

    September 3, 2011 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  8. Anonymous

    This guy dishes up dirt and then makes a public apology. A cheap way to cover a cheap shot

    September 3, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  9. Republican's are fraud's !

    Too late to pull it back now ! You already said it where people could hear you say it so now Mr. Walsh you are looking like an idiot ! BTW what is it with republican congressmen named Joe ? First you have Joe ( You Lie ! ) Wilson , then Joe ( I apologize to BP ! ) Barton and now you have Joe Walsh with his idiotic comment ! Is there something about the name Joe that makes these republican congressmen blurt out stupid comments or could there be something more idiotic at play like Old Fashioned Racism ? The thing's that all these Joe's have in common is that they are all middle aged white males and Republican ! The disrespect shown by so-called lawmakers to President Obama has been unprecedented and utterly ridiculous ! The racism is becoming hard to ignore ! It's becoming obvious that these antics go far beyond simple policy disagreements !

    September 3, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  10. used to vote repub

    This is an example of why I'll not only vote for Obama, but straight Dem. I'm an Illinois voter, I'm apologetic that this POS got elected. Pay your $100,000 child support that you owe your wife and CHILD! Show some respect for the office of the POTUS.

    September 3, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  11. Mark

    I wonder who has more class: Obama who does not get into name calling with the opposition or the neocons who have refered to him with degrading and insulting remarks.

    September 3, 2011 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  12. Landy

    The media put that guy who does not pay child support for 9 years in people's face again and again. He can't measure up to the presiden because he does not care for his own family The president does not want to see his ugly deadbeat dad face in there. Stay home.

    September 3, 2011 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  13. Landy

    He is an idiot himself and he needs to get out of people's face.

    September 3, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  14. kk

    Why don't you pay your child support?

    September 3, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  15. AEJ

    This guy is over his head. Has he paid up the $100,000 child support he owes to his wife for their three children yet?
    With people like this guy in Congress, no wonder Congress approval is at a dismal low. This guy represents ROCK BOTTOM. Who could have elected this guy and put him in office? I think he is trying to get his "15-minutes of fame". Who would know about this guy unless he make stupid statements like this? HE IS A FREAKING RACIST and represents the Tea Party who puts him in office.

    September 3, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  16. Hmmmm

    "Idiotic" is refusing to go to the speech, listen, evaluate and do your job Joe. I am not supporting either Republicans or Democrats, I just want to see those elected to represent the people to do just that. Get to work.

    September 3, 2011 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  17. ED FL

    This guy Walsh better enjoy his 15 minutes of FAME/SHAME. His win by 291 votes will dissapear and he will have plenty of time to hang around the mens rooms in airports and bus stations . That seems to be a prety good locale for GOP FLUNKIES Lots of young navy people in his area.

    September 3, 2011 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  18. roro

    This deadbeat dad is a disgrace to his office. He's probably more at home in a bar than in the House. He is a rude, disrespectful, belligerent loudmouth with apparently no sense of propriety or innate intelligence. He's just a big boor.

    September 3, 2011 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  19. george

    Joe Walsh is a dead beat dad who owes child support, in my book he has no credibility what so ever, he also is constantly disrespecting the office of the presidency of the United States. Joe you were elected by a few people in your district, the president was elected by millions of Americans, again, from one good dad to a dead beat dad: you are worthless.

    September 3, 2011 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  20. Ron

    No, congressman. What's idiotic is that the GOP continues to sit in the House of Representatives knowing that you are a deadbeat dad. If that's good enough for the GOP my only question is: what isn't? You should be tossed out to face the law and/or go to jail for failing to pay child support just like any other deadbeat parent. You are an embarrassment to the GOP. Please resign?

    September 3, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  21. max

    I think we all know who the idiot in this story is. Right congressman?

    September 3, 2011 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  22. bill

    Never apologize for speaking the truth.

    September 3, 2011 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  23. A keen observer

    The republican mantra of tax cuts and relaxed regulation has been repeatedly proven not to work. Come up with some real ideas, Representative Joe Stupid!

    September 3, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  24. terrbear

    I hope the good people of SC have the sense to vote this guy out of office. Until our elected officals grow up and start acting like adults we're all doomed! The republicans ran on JOBS JOBS JOBS and have not done one things to create a sinlge one.

    September 3, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  25. Rob

    Definition of idiot : term used to define what the GOP or tea party member sees looking into a mirror

    September 3, 2011 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
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