Rep. Joe Wilson, a South Carolina Republican, yelled "You lie!" after President Obama told a joint session of Congress that illegal immigrants would not be covered by his health care plan.
The outburst came as Obama addressed what he called "bogus claims" about health care reform. He called the idea of so-called death panels "a lie, plain and simple," and said that his reform plan would not apply to people who are in the country illegally, as some say it will.
At that point, a voice in the back of the House chamber could clearly be heard yelling, "You lie! You lie!" Obama responded, "It's not true," while House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared visibly upset by the breach of protocol from the congressman.
Wilson's fellow Republicans condemned his behavior. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said on CNN that it was "totally disrespectful," while Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee told Politics Daily, "I have great respect for the office [of the presidency]. That's not the kind of thing that is appropriate." House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer called it "a shameful act."
Late Wednesday night, Wilson released a statement apologizing for his actions. "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. 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."
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