- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Ann Romney has denounced Democratic gubernatorial candidate Vincent Sheheen after he accidentally called South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley a “whore” and then laughed.

“When I first heard about it, it hit me right in my gut,” Mrs. Romney, wife of former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, told CNN on Monday. “My nerve endings went haywire. It’s so upsetting when you know someone can say something like that about a woman, and not have any kind of reaction. It’s so unacceptable. Nikki is a great girl and has been a great governor.”

Mr. Sheheen, a South Carolina state senator, was speaking at an event last week in Florence when he stumbled over his words and said, “We are going to escort whore out the door,” in an attack on Ms. Haley.

Mr. Sheheen immediately corrected himself but began to laugh after some people in the audience applauded the slip. He later apologized in a radio interview, saying “certainly my words were garbled.”

“I apologize because I don’t want to send that message to anybody,” he said, CNN reported.

But Mrs. Romney argued that the mistake revealed a double standard that conservative women consistently face.

“We need to make sure we have a safe place so that other women can feel like they can do this and these kinds of things aren’t going to happen to them,” she told CNN. “You get so sick of saying there is bias out there, but if a Republican had said this, it would be blowing up in their face like nobody’s business. Where is Emily’s List? Where is N.O.W.? Where are they?”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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