WASHINGTON — The Senate's panty flap is over. Sen Pete V. Domenici (R-N.M.) apologized and Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.) accepted.
Domenici, not known for his sharp wit, set off the tempest Saturday night when he made a "panty joke" at the annual Alfalfa Club dinner, attended by about 650 of the biggest names in official Washington.
The dinner is supposedly all in fun.
The New Mexico Republican, speaking as a mock presidential candidate on the "Alfalfa" ticket, said he was so electrifying that "just like the singer Tom Jones, women often throw their panties at me when I speak. It happened again just yesterday. I just don't know what got into Senator Mikulski."
The joke at the all-male dinner, closed to the media, was reported by the Washington Post, based on recollections of participants.
Although the joke drew a roar of laughter, Mikulski, the feisty first-time senator, did not find it amusing. It was "outrageous" and "insulting," she said.
But Monday, Domenici and Mikulski issued a joint statement. He apologized, she accepted and the flap was over.