‘Leigh can be a real cow sometimes’
Liberal strategist Grahame Morris apologises for calling Leigh Sales a cow on 702 ABC Sydney on Tuesday morning.
Veteran Liberal strategist Grahame Morris has apologised for calling a senior woman journalist a “cow”.
The remark followed recent debate over whether Opposition Leader Tony Abbott and other senior Liberals treated women such as Deputy Speaker Anna Burke with disrespect.
That’s silly. It’s a phrase I have used a million times that somebody can be a real cow when they want to be. Look, I apologise
It also came just days after Prime Minister Julia Gillard claimed to be the victim of “misogynists and nut jobs” on the internet.Apologised … Grahame Morris got a tweet back after saying sorry.
Mr Morris was asked on Sydney 702 ABC Sydney today about a tough interview ABC television’s Leigh Sales did last week with Mr Abbott, in which Mr Abbott seemed to stumble over whether he had read a statement by mining company BHP Billiton.Advertisement
“Well, Leigh can be a real cow sometimes when she is doing her interviews,” Mr Morris said.
Sales responded via Twitter: “I’d rather be a cow than a dinosaur.”7.30 presenter Leigh Sales responded to Grahame Morris’ comment via Twitter: “I’d rather be a cow than a dinosaur.” Photo: Supplied
After a deluge of angry messages and telephone calls, 702 put Mr Morris back on air to explain what he meant.
“Poor little sensitive souls,” he said, having been told of the feedback.
Asked whether he would have made the comment if Sales had been a male interviewer, Mr Morris said: “That’s silly. It’s a phrase I have used a million times that somebody can be a real cow when they want to be. Look, I apologise.
“It really should be something like: Having known most of the senior journalists, and particularly the political journalists over the last 30 years there is a mixture there of people who can be tough, they can be straight up and down and they can be a mixture and they can be soft. And there’s no doubt at times Leigh can be tough.
“That would have been a much better expression.”
Mr Abbott told reporters in Rockhampton: “Politicians should be treated with respect, journalists should be treated with respect.
“I think we should have, as far as is humanly possible, a civil discourse in this country and this gentleman in question has apologised.”
Later, Sales accepted Mr Morris’s apology.
“Grahame Morris has apologised on 702 and I accept that apology and look forward to doing my job again tonight,” she responded on Twitter.