advertisement

GOP leader uses vulgar term to describe Obama's record

Saturday, November 1, 2008 | 9:10 p.m. CDT

COLUMBUS, Ohio — House Republican leader John Boehner has used a vulgar expression to refer to Democrat Barack Obama and his voting record in the Illinois legislature.

While campaigning for Republican presidential candidate John McCain on Wednesday, Boehner told a small crowd at a bar in the college town of Oxford that failing to vote "yes" or "no" on an issue meant a lawmaker was a "chickens---."

The Ohio congressman said the last thing the country needs is to have a "chicken" in the White House.

Boehner spokesman Jessica Towhey confirmed the remarks on Saturday but said the congressman wasn't calling Obama the vulgar term. "The point that Boehner was making was that Barack Obama has consistently avoided making tough decisions and taking tough votes, and voters need to know that," she said.

The remarks, first reported in The Miami Student, the college newspaper published at Miami University, alluded to Obama's record of voting "present" 129 times as a state lawmaker. About 100 people attended the event, most of them Republican college students.

"In Congress we have a red button, a green button and a yellow button, all right. Green means ‘yes,' ‘red' means no, and ‘yellow' means you're a chickens---," Boehner said to the loudest applause of the event. "And the last thing we need in the White House, in the Oval Office, behind that big desk, is some chicken who wants to push this yellow button."

In the Illinois General Assembly, "present" votes are common and used for far more than avoiding a difficult choice. At times lawmakers vote "present" when they have a conflict of interest. In other cases, they do it to register opposition to a procedural decision or to signal that they support a bill's goal but feel the legislation is flawed.

In Obama's case, the 129 "present" votes amounted to about 3.5 percent of the votes he cast in nearly eight years as a state senator.

During his talk, Boehner also disparaged Obama's work as a community organizer.

"This guy was a community organizer for 20 years," Boehner said. "If somebody can tell me what a community organizer is, maybe I can understand it better."

Obama spokesman Tom Reynolds called Boehner's words an angry attack.

"It's sad that John McCain and his supporters are closing their campaign with increasingly angry, desperate, false attacks instead of offering up a single thing John McCain would do differently on the economy than George Bush," Reynolds said.

 

 


Like what you see here? Become a member.


Show Me the Errors (What's this?)

Report corrections or additions here. Leave comments below here.

You must be logged in to participate in the Show Me the Errors contest.


Comments

Leave a comment

Speak up and join the conversation! Make sure to follow the guidelines outlined below and register with our site. You must be logged in to comment. (Our full comment policy is here.)

  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Don't use language that makes personal attacks on fellow commenters or discriminates based on race, religion, gender or ethnicity.
  • Use your real first and last name when registering on the website. It will be published with every comment. (Read why we ask for that here.)
  • Don’t solicit or promote businesses.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report comment" link.

You must be logged in to comment.

Forget your password?

Don't have an account? Register here.

advertisements