MADISON (WKOW) -- A Madison radio host whose sexual comments about Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch sparked complaints, said Wednesday his remarks "might have been a little too crude."
In a statement, WTDY host John "Sly" Sylvester wrote he sent a letter to Kleefisch to apologize for his remarks in a Monday on-air segment.
In that segment, Sylvester did a mocking impersonation of Kleefisch's cold-calling of Illinois businesses to try to lure them to Wisconsin. During the impersonation, Sylvester attributed sexual acts as a factor in Kleefisch's election. Later in the segment, during a discussion of high speed rail, Sylvester made another sexual reference to Kleefisch.
During his radio show Wednesday, Sylvester said his remarks were meant as a metaphor. Sylvester said he was trying to make a point on the folly of Kleefisch's business recruitment attempts.
"I didn't need to take it the sexual reference part."
"I took no offense," said his co-host Crystal McKenzie, who said the remarks were tongue-in-cheek.
In response to the Monday comments, a representative of the Republican Party of Wisconsin called them "offensive" and demanded an apology.
A representative of the American Cancer Society also criticized Sylvester's Monday radio segment. A podcast previously posted on the radio station web site included Sylvester's referencing Kleefisch's colon cancer, and discussing with McKenzie whether Kleefisch wore a wig or just had a poor hairstyle.
"I'm not mocking her cancer," Sylvester said on-air Wednesday.
In Milwaukee Wednesday, Kleefisch responded to Sylvester's remarks tersely.
But in an apparent response to Sylvester's on-air suggestion sex was used to win election, Kleefisch elaborated at more length.
"I guess I'd prefer to talk to the daughters of Wisconsin, who I am confident understand that success is achieved by faith, and by will, and by hard work, and not other things."
Also: Sylvester stumps for woman candidate - http://addins.wkow.com/blogs/scoop/2011/01/sly-campaigns-for-woman-days-after-sexual-remarks
Online reporting by Tony Galli.