Echoing the GOP’s spittle-spewing astroturfed town-hall hissy fits this summer, Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., heckled Pres. Obama during his address to a joint session of Congress tonight.
“You lie,” Wilson yelled after Obama asserted that reform proposals do not include covering non-citizens.
Could be that Wilson was in a celebratory mood. Earlier today, his son Alan announced he is running for attorney general of South Carolina.
As he returned from his August vacation, Wilson told the State newspaper that he received standing ovations at town hall meetings when he stated his opposition to health-insurance reform:
U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, a Republican who lives in Springdale, also spoke to the biggest crowds of his political career in town hall meetings dominated by health care — 1,700 people at Keenan High School in Columbia, 1,500 at Lexington High School, 1,200 at Hilton Head High School.
“Ninety-five percent of the people supported my position of promoting health insurance reform, but not a government takeover,” Wilson said. “I received standing ovations when (the meetings) concluded.”
Wilson, Rep. Gresham Barrett, a Republican from the Upstate, and Rep. Henry Brown of Charleston are among 28 co-sponsors of the Empowering Patients First Act, one of the main GOP alternatives to the House Democratic plan.
Among its reforms, the bill makes individuals’ premiums tax deductible, gives states incentives to create high-risk insurance pools, allows people to shop across state lines and establishes administrative “health courts” in states to hear medical malpractice claims.
From Wilson’s Wikipedia page:
In September 2002, during a debate on the possibility of going to war in Iraq, Wilson called Congressman Bob Filner “viscerally anti-American” and claimed that he had a “hatred of America” after Filner suggested the United States supplied chemical and biological weapons to Saddam Hussein. Wilson said later that he didn’t intend to insult Filner.
Wilson is a staunch advocate of a federal prohibition of online poker.
Joe Wilson represents South Carolina’s 2nd District, which ranges from Columbia in the center of the state to Hilton Head Island on the coast.
UPDATE: As of this morning (Sept. 10), Democratic fundraising group ActBlue has raised $69,000 on behalf of Wilson’s opponent, Rob Miller. Within the first two hours of Obama’s speech last night outraged voters had contributed $25,000 to ActBlue.