CaribWorldNews, WASHINGTON, D.C., Thurs. Sept. 10, 2009: A Southern Republican congressman, who last night seemed to forget his southern manners in an uncivil outburst during President Obama`s well-received speech on health care, has apologized.
But the stunning outburst seemed to be the new item that has upstaged a carefully crafted and delivered speech detailing the President`s plan on health care reform for Americans.
South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson, who screamed out `You lie` during the portion of Obama`s speech that addressed claims that health care reform will not include care for the undocumented, was the most discussed news item on television last night and across the wires.
However, late last night he issued a statement of apology.
`This evening, I let my emotions get the best of me when listening to the president`s remarks regarding the coverage of illegal immigrants in the health care bill,` Wilson stated. `While I disagree with the president`s statement, my comments were inappropriate and regrettable. I extend sincere apologies to the president for this lack of civility.`
Wilson said he also called the White House to apologize and spoke with Obama`s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
Wilson`s rude outburst stunned the room and caused the President to stop and look toward the heckler.
But Obama, in his usual suave diplomacy, continued on, stating simply, `That`s not true.` The sudden outburst brought loud boos from House Democrats as U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared shocked and Vice President Joe Biden looked down and shook his head.
Even some Republicans seemed appalled with Sen. John McCain calling Wilson`s outburst `totally disrespectful.`
Appearing on CNN`s `Larry King Live,` McCain said there was `no place for it in that setting or any other and he should apologize immediately.`
Wilson represents the state`s 2nd congressional district, which includes the state capital, Columbia, and stretches to Beaufort and Hilton Head Island.
Other lawmakers also weighed in as the focus shifted from what should have been a major discussion on reform to a congressman, emboldened as townhall participants from his side of the aisle were this summer in slamming a plan that could benefit millions of uninsured Americans.