Tag Archives: rep. joe wilson

Zaidi regrets throwing shoes at Bush – “I should have just shouted ‘you lie'”

The Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at former President George W. Bush expressed regret today, soon after his release from prison after serving nine months of a three year sentence.

“I’m sorry,” Muntader al-Zaidi told a gathering of reporters at the al-Baghdadia television studio, and added, “that America had such a satanic warmongering leader for eight years.”

A reporter for al-Baghdadia who was covering the Dec. 14, 2008 press conference held by Bush and Iraq prime minister Nuri al-Maliki, Zaidi threw his shoes at Bush and shouted, “this is for the widows and orphans and all those killed in Iraq,” as an act of protest.

“While I was in prison I did a lot of thinking and learning to take my mind off the daily beatings, and what I realized was that shoe-throwing is not something you do in a free society,” said Zaidi.

Zaidi went on to say, “I should have just yelled the stuff about widows and orphans. And even that was too wordy, I should have just yelled ‘you lie!’ like that patriotic American congressman,” he said.

“I learned there is no penalty if you do that in a free society, absolutely none at all, zero, nada. And as we all know Iraq is totally free thanks to American intervention,” Zaidi said.

Zaidi appeared to be in good condition after his imprisonment, although he was missing a front tooth. However, he said he would be getting dental work done thanks to the single payer health system — created by the new Iraq constitution drafted by the Bush Administration in 2005.

Obama speaks to half-empty Congress – Absent members had notes from parents

President Barack Obama addressed a half-empty joint session of Congress last night, further evidence of the polarization of the ongoing debate surrounding health reform.

The president used his speech to forcefully state his vision for reform, which included an end to rescission and preexisting conditions, and a limited public option. However, he laid the groundwork for constructive compromise with conservative critics by proposing torte reform pilot projects and revenue neutrality.

Obama also devoted significant portion of time to urging representatives and senators to work hard and stay in Congress, even though they might rather still be on their August recess. “Not every committee hearing you attend may be interesting. Every bill you work on may not seem relevant to your life. But the work you do here this year will help enact real health reform for the American people,” Obama said.

However, his words were largely unheard, with no-shows evident among the Republican and Blue Dog contingents. Many seats in the House chamber were empty, with parents of senators and representatives representing red and swing districts choosing to opt out of their children hearing the speech.

The concerns of Adele Cantor of Virginia reflected those of fellow parents. “The idea of him talking to my son just didn’t seem appropriate,” said Mrs. Cantor.

“I mean, I’m not a student of civics or anything, but I can’t remember a president ever speaking to Congress before. Political recruiting in Congress for legislation sounds like Communism,” she said.

Fred Baucus of Montana said he was fearful of the effect of the president’s words, since Congress is a captive audience. “Hussein Obama is trying to indoctrinate Congress, to subvert the role of lobbyists in making our laws,” he said.

In Ohio, Lois Boehner wanted to know why Obama is allowed to call all the joint sessions of Congress. “I voted for McCain-Palin, and I believe their policies should govern us. Why doesn’t McCain get to call 45% of the joint sessions?”

The principal leaders of Congressional Democrats and Republicans bowed to parental wishes and did not allow discussion following the president’s message. Majority Leader Harry Reid said the Senate is not the place for controversial topics. “Follow-up conversation may happen at home with parents,” Reid said.

In a related story, President Obama paused briefly during his speech in order to take away Rep. Joe Wilson’s (R-SC) Pokemon cards. “You’ll get them back in June. Now go to the Math Center,” the president told Wilson.