Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) shouts "You Lie" as U.S. President Barack Obama addresses a joint session of the U.S. Congress.
With those two words, civil discourse in Washington became, like, sooo 2008.
Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina interrupted President Obama's speech Wednesday night, shouting his accusation of mendacity as Obama laid out his plans for healthcare -- and the political blogosphere gasped.
Politico's Ben Smith noted that the issue that seemed to raise Wilson's ire -- whether Obama's plan would funnel healthcare funds to illegal immigrants -- had been vetted by political research website FactCheck.org and found untrue.
The Associated Press characterized Wilson's outburst as a hangover from the "nastiness" of August, when town-hall meetings on Obama's healthcare plan turned rancorous.
August, or the 1850s? The New York Times reported in 1856 of a recent outbreak of Congressional duels. In a less genteel time, Wilson's outburst might have drawn a more pointed response. The Congressman could consider himself lucky he lives in the 21st century, when an impolite outburst results in little more than a scowl from Nancy Pelosi and uneasy admonitions from members of his own party.
Even Wilson seems to have realized he went too far, issuing an apology for his outburst. The rules of decorum of the Republican House caucus expressly prohibit calling the president a "liar."
Here's the video from Politico:
What do you think? Should Wilson have interrupted the President's speech? Have your say in the comments.