Gillibrand: I wanted to tell labor leader 'to go f*** himself'

Senator says lawmaker called her 'porky'
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Story highlights

  • Kirsten Gillibrand drops the F-bomb in a webcast interview
  • She was recalling a story about what she once wanted to say to a labor leader
  • He had made a comment about her looks after she had a baby
  • She says she wanted to tell him to "f*** himself"
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand said Monday she had to hold her tongue when a male labor leader made comments about her post-pregnancy weight shortly after she began her career in Congress.
"I've just had a baby, I've just been appointed [to the Senate], I have a lot to learn, so much on my plate, and this man basically says to me, 'You're too fat to be elected statewide,'" she said on HuffPost Live, a webcast. She did not name the labor leader.
"At that moment, if I could have just disappeared, I would have," she continued. "If I could have just melted in tears, I would have. But I had to just sit there and talk to him. I switched the subject ... I didn't hear a word he said, but I wasn't in a place where I could tell him to go f*** himself."
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While promoting her book, "Off the Sidelines," the Democratic senator from New York has been vocal lately about remarks she and other women hear about their physical appearances.
"A statement about a woman's looks -- positive or negative -- can be very undermining to her credibility," Gillibrand said Monday. "I want women to make their own judgments."
She has faced some criticism in recent weeks for not naming the individuals who have made such comments, as some of them have come from colleagues on Capitol Hill, she has said.
"It's not about any one insult or any one person, because that's not why I shared the details. I specifically shared them because I want to talk about these broader challenges," she said. "This happens to women all the time in every industry every day."