Dems Filling Joe Wilson’s War Chest
Instinctively, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was ready to move on after Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) apologized to the White House for his “You lie!” outburst during President Obama’s health reform speech to Congress last week. Political pressure from her own caucus, however, has forced a House vote, scheduled for today, on whether to reprimand Wilson formally.
It’s a risky strategy. While a great deal of ink has been spilled pointing out that the episode has inspired a nationwide rush of donations to Wilson’s 2010 opponent, Democrat Rob Miller, it’s also being reported that conservatives are filling Wilson’s coffers to at least the same degree. Keeping Wilson in the spotlight with today’s vote, no matter how good it feels for Democrats, will likely keep the checks flowing to the Republican’s campaign office.
As The Washington Post’s Michael Kinsley wrote yesterday, Wilson “is having the time of his life, relishing his newfound celebrity and raking in the campaign contributions, too.”
The more times he is required to write “I will not call the President a liar” on a special blackboard set up in the well of the House, the bigger hero he will become to a large chunk of the population.