Dem retreats from controversial critique of Republican governor

| Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, 8:33 p.m.

MILWAUKEE — A day after sparking national headlines for using inflammatory language about Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's record on women's issues, Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz retreated from her harsh rhetoric in a statement issued on Thursday.

Wasserman Schultz evoked domestic violence in critiquing Walker's record.

“I shouldn't have used the words I used,” Wasserman Schultz said. “But that 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 preventative health care, Walker's record speaks for itself.”

During a women's roundtable event in Milwaukee on Wednesday, the Florida congresswoman said: “Scott Walker has given women the back of his hand. I know that is stark. I know that is direct. But that is reality.”

She added: “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.”

Republican Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch said she was “shocked” that domestic violence language was used to discuss political disagreements.

“I think the remarks were absolutely hideous and the motive behind them was despicable,” she said.

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