WASHINGTON, Oct. 23 (UPI) -- A California congressman apologized Tuesday for saying that U.S. soldiers were going to Iraq "to get their heads blown off for the president's amusement."
U.S. Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., directed his apology at U.S. President George Bush and his family, the U.S. troops and his colleagues in Congress, the Los Angeles Times reported. His remarks came immediately after a resolution to censure him failed by a 196-173 vote. Five Democrats joined all Republicans in voting to censure.
"I hope that with this apology I will become as insignificant as I should be," Stark said.
Stark, now in his 17th term in Congress, made his inflammatory remark during debate last week on overturning Bush's veto of a bill expanding the program for children's health insurance. U.S. Rep. Ellen Tauscher, D-Calif., who was in the chair at the time, cautioned Stark about his tone but refused to bar him from the debate. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called his remarks "inappropriate" the next day.