SACRAMENTO (Legal Newsline) - The campaign for California gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown issued an apology Thursday after one of his aides was heard in a taped telephone message referring to GOP rival Meg Whitman as a "whore."
According to The Sacramento Bee, a recording of last month's conversation was circulated to the press Thursday.
Brown had left a message with the Los Angeles Police Protective League. After he apparently believed he had hung up the telephone, the machine continued to record a conversation between himself and a group of aides.
The Democrat complained that the union -- which endorsed the former eBay CEO -- wanted him to soften his support for pension reform.
"Do we want to put an ad out?" Brown said in the recording. "That I have been warned if I crack down on pensions... that they'll go to Whitman, and that's where they'll go because they know Whitman... will cut them a deal?"
Then, a second voice interrupts him: "What about saying she's a whore?"
Brown replies, "Well, I'm going to use that. It proves you've cut a secret deal to protect the pensions."
Brown's campaign didn't deny the conversation took place.
Campaign manager Steven Glazer released the following statement:
"This was a jumbled and often inaudible recording of a private conversation. At times our language was salty," he said.
"We apologize to Ms. Whitman and anyone who may have been offended."
Whitman campaign spokeswoman Sarah Pompei said in response:
"The use of the term 'whore' is an insult to both Meg Whitman and to the women of California. This is an appalling and unforgivable smear against Meg Whitman," she said in a statement.
"At the very least Mr. Brown tacitly approved this despicable slur and he himself may have used the term at least once on this recording."
From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.