Washington (CNN) - The head of an Ohio Republican organization took back a slap at a Democratic congresswoman on Friday after a recent campaign flyer said she should be put "back in the kitchen."
Read the flyer here [pdf]
Rep. Betty Sutton is the subject of the political attack by the Medina County Republican Executive Committee. The flyer was sent to about 15,000 Ohio homes as part of the political effort to try and defeat her in November.
"Let's take Betty Sutton out of the House and put her back in the kitchen!" the Medina County GOP said in the flyer. In a statement posted on her campaign website, Sutton blasted the line as "an insult to all women."
"The statement in the mailer devalues the tremendous breadth of talents of women and girls, be they Republicans, Independents, Democrats or none of the above," she said.
Sutton called for Bill Heck, chairman of the county committee, to step down.
Heck defended the flyer's overall message, telling CNN it was intended to educate and engage voters. And he dismissed Sutton's call for his resignation.
"If there's going be a change that's going to come from the Medina County Republican Party," Heck said.
But Heck acknowledged the "back in the kitchen" line was in poor taste. "I agree with her 100 percent," Heck said of Sutton's complaint.
"I think it was a mistake on that choice of words," he said. "This piece of rhetoric was certainly not meant to be offensive."
Heck noted that he has two daughters and his wife had previously run for elective office.
"So the words themselves weren't intended to be offensive or sexist," he said.
Heck also told CNN that the controversy has caused the executive committee of his Republican organization to create a new policy to avoid such statements in future flyers.
Sutton does not yet appear ready to accept Heck's attempt to reverse the slam.
"You can never completely retrieve a sexist message once you send it out to 15,000 households," the congresswoman told CNN.
As for Heck's overall defense of the flyer as an educational tool for voters, Sutton added, "I can't imagine how making such a belittling comment about women could be in any way educational."
Four candidates are vying for the GOP nomination to challenge Sutton in November.