Wasserman Schultz Apologizes for 'Back of Hand' Slap at Walker

Image: Wasserman Schultz Apologizes for 'Back of Hand' Slap at Walker (Paul Morigi/Getty Images

Thursday, 04 Sep 2014 06:08 PM

By Cathy Burke

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Bowing to a storm of criticism over a tongue lashing, using images of domestic violence, that she gave Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Democratic National Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz apologized Thursday for saying he had  "given women the back of his hand."

"I shouldn't have used the words I used," the Florida congresswoman told CBS News.

But she refused to back down on her message, saying her poor choice of words "shouldn't detract from the broader point that I was making: that Scott Walker's policies have been bad for Wisconsin women."

"Whether it's mandating ultrasounds, repealing an equal-pay law, or rejecting federal funding for preventve healthcare, Walker's record speaks for itself," she asserted.

She also took a shot at conservative Republican lawmakers opposed to reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act.

"As for the issue of domestic violence, it's unacceptable that a majority of congressional Republicans opposed this critical legislation, of which I was a proud cosponsor, after blocking its reauthorization for more than a year," she said, according to The Hill.

Wasserman Schultz's controversial critique came during a roundtable discussion on women's issues in Milwaukee.

"Scott Walker has given women the back of his hand," she said. "I know that is direct. But that is reality. What Republican tea party extremists like Scott Walker are doing is they are grabbing us by the hair and pulling us back. It is not going to happen on our watch."

The blow-back came from both sides of the aisle, with the Republican National Committee's communications director, Sean Spicer, describing the remarks as "desperate," The Hill reports, while a spokeswoman for Walker's Democratic challenger, Mary Burke, said she'd have delivered any criticism of Walker "respectfully."

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