- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 3, 2016

A Nashville, Tennessee, election chairman has resigned after he was caught on camera calling a TV reporter a “bitch,” but he remains unapologetic for the outburst.

Davidson County Election Commission Chairman Ron Buchanan submitted his resignation Monday to the Tennessee Division of Elections in advance of an investigative television report that showed him turn combative with WSMV-TV reporter Alanna Autler, The Tennessean reported.

Video of the incident showed Mr. Buchanan grabbing at the station’s camera and ending the interview by telling Ms. Autler: “That’s exactly the bitch I thought you would be.”

“I said it. I meant it. I still mean it,” Mr. Buchanan, a Republican, told The Tennessean. “That was the one word that I could think of that accurately conveyed what I was thinking at that time.

“I should not have used that terminology, but as the media has the freedom of press, individuals have the freedom of speech. And I can tell her what I think about her. And I did that, and I don’t apologize for it. There are people that don’t think I should have done it and that it hurts politics in this area, and so be it.”

Mr. Buchanan blamed the outburst on a “personal comment” he alleged Ms. Autler directed at him, but declined to give any details. Footage from WSMV-TV did not appear to show her saying anything beyond the subject matter of the story, The Tennessean reported.

WSMV news director Jim Gilchriest issued a statement saying the news station would let the story speak for itself. The subject of the report questioned election administrator Kent Wall’s expenses charged on a Metro-issued credit card that was paid for with tax dollars.

Mr. Buchanan said his resignation had nothing to do with the report’s subject matter, The Tennessean reported.

“There are some that may feel my description of her conduct was inappropriate,” he wrote in his resignation letter. “That is understandable, but it is certainly not uncommon. I would estimate 90 percent of the adult men would have used the same term to describe the reporter’s conduct if they had been present, or a similar word would have been used by women to describe the conduct if it had been a male reporter.”

When asked to respond to criticism that his choice of words was sexist, Mr. Buchanan disagreed, saying, “The b-word goes both ways. There’s b-words for both male and female genders,” The Tennessean reported.

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