At a Democratic gathering over the weekend, Sontany said of women Republican state lawmakers: "You have to lift their skirts to find out if they are women. You sure can't find out by how they vote!" State GOP chairman Chris Devaney quickly issued a press release calling her comment "inappropriate and disrespectful" and demanding that various Democrats denounce Sontany.
In her office down the hall from the gritty Legislative Plaza press room, we found Sontany sitting glumly at her desk and wishing we wouldn't ask her about any of this. "I would just as soon see this not have all the legs that apparently it's going to take," she says. "I guess it's a slow news day."
She says she made her wiseacre remark about Rep. Debra Maggart because the Democrats were talking about how one of Maggart's counties, Sumner, is the only one in the state without pre-kindergarten classes.
"I think they think it's glorified daycare," Sontany tells Pith. "I would think that women should care at least as much [as men] about family issues, and I would consider that a family issue."
But Sontany adds: "That was a glib, off-the-cuff remark that I made that I really wish I had not done. It was not one of my better thought-out statements and I did not mean it to offend. If I have offended anyone, I'm certainly sorry that I did."
OK, but what do we do about the horrifying images that Sontany has implanted in our brains of Republican women in the legislature hiking up their skirts?