Rep. Joe Walsh: Obama ‘isn’t smart enough’ to know what tyrant means
By ABDON M. PALLASCH Political Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org June 20, 2012 7:51PM
Updated: July 23, 2012 7:22AM
Always outspoken Congressman Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) has insulted President Barack Obama again.
He told an Elmhurst Town Hall Saturday that he was taking back his description of the president as a “tyrant” for unilaterally ending deportations of undocumented people brought here as children by their parents.
“I don’t want to call him a ‘tyrant’ because he really isn’t smart enough to know what that means,” Walsh said in the video shot and distributed by the CREDO SuperPAC.
Walsh, a freshman congressman, is a favorite of the Republican party’s Tea Party wing for his caustic attacks on Obama. He told Obama in a video to “quit lying” about the nation’s economy. He told attendees at a Schaumburg Town Hall last month that Democrats made African-Americans dependent on government.
Walsh faces Iraqi War veteran Tammy Duckworth, a Democrat, in a race for a northwest suburban congressional seat in November.
Walsh told the Elmhurst crowd Saturday that instead of trying to get Congress to change immigration law, Obama was presuming the authority to tell his law enforcement agents not to enforce the laws on the books.
“You just told your law enforcement people: ‘Don’t enforce it,’ ” Walsh said. “I don’t want to give him credit [for being a ‘tyrant’] because I don’t think he’s smart enough — I think he’s only doing this because he’s campaigning — that’s all the guy knows.”
Walsh spokesman Christian Morgan amplified Walsh’s position Wednesday, saying, “The president’s ... disdain for democracy and the American people is clear: He ... bypassed Congress with his executive order granting a temporary amnesty to nearly 1 million illegal immigrants.”
Walsh’s fellow Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) said Walsh misunderstood the law.
“The president is using the same powers previous Republican and Democratic presidents have used, powers Congress has given him in the law to prioritize deportations,” Gutierrez said. “The president doesn’t want to waste scarce resources on young immigrants who have bright futures when we could be using those resources to go after bad guys and I absolutely agree that the president has set a sensible course of action.”
Walsh was in Washington, D.C., Wednesday when a bus with four nuns and 150 other activists arrived at his Fox Lake office to argue that Rep. Paul Ryan’s proposed budget — which Walsh supports — would cut too much from programs supporting the poor and vulnerable.