After compliment for Kamala Harris, an apology from Obama

April 05, 2013|By Chris Megerian

SACRAMENTO -- It was the compliment that spawned a million tweets.

On Thursday, President Obama said California's Kamala Harris was the "best-looking" attorney general in the country, and commentators raced for their keyboards and smartphones to discuss whether the remark was sexist or benign.

Harris appears to be brushing off the whole episode.

Her communications director, Gil Duran, issued a statement saying "the attorney general and the president have been friends for many years. They had a great conversation yesterday and she strongly supports him."

He did not say whether Harris took any offense at the compliment, or what she thought of the ensuing controversy.

Obama ended up apologizing in a phone call to Harris after the Bay Area fund-raiser where he made his remarks.

The president "fully recognizes the challenges women continue to face in the workplace,” said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, and believes that they “should not be judged by their appearance."

Carney also noted that the president praised Harris for more than just her looks.

During the fund-raiser, Obama said she is "brilliant," "dedicated" and "tough."

Then he added, "She also happens to be, by far, the best-looking attorney general.”


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Twitter: @chrismegerian

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