September 24th, 2010
01:28 PM ET
12 years ago

Whitman backtracks from calling Fresno 'awful'

(CNN) – Meg Whitman had some 'splainin' to do.

The California gubernatorial candidate who is locked in a tight a tight race with Democrat Jerry Brown took heat from some proud Fresno residents earlier this week when she inartfully described the central California city as "look[ing] like Detroit – it's awful."

The comments, published Wednesday in the San Jose Mercury News, beset Whitman on the campaign trail and the California Republican took to the Fresno airwaves Thursday to clean up the small mess she had created.

"Fresno is a great town," she told KMJ AM 580 Thursday. "I love the Central Valley." The California Republican, who has steadily learned the finer points of politicking after a career spent in business, also said she merely meant to convey that the recession had hit Fresno hard.

"What I was trying to communicate was Fresno, the Central Valley, has been very hard hit. As hard hit as places like Detroit. So that's what I was trying to communicate," said Whitman, who is neck and neck in the polls with Brown.

The city of Fresno has a population of 500,000 and an unemployment rate close to 15 percent, according to the Fresno Bee – more than 2 points higher than the statewide rate.

Filed under: Jerry Brown • Meg Whitman
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Mark

    Pathetic liar.

    September 24, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  2. Nick San Diego

    Yea sure, I believe her....... All her millions spent on winning the Governorship will be for naught.

    September 24, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  3. PunkMonk

    Megasaurus is someone that is only for the rich. She doesn't care about the central valley any more than she cares about the maids that take care of her mansion. Let's all be serious. She wants to buy the Governorship and it isn't to help anyone in the Central Valley. If we help her get elected, she will forget about us like we were a one night stand!!!

    September 24, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  4. Brook

    Eat cake, Meg

    September 24, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  5. Angelica

    central California city as "look[ing] like Detroit – it's awful." ! What ???! Oh you are so done Whitman.

    September 24, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  6. 313what

    How dare she insult Detroit by comparing it to Fresno!!

    September 24, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  7. Jake

    Let us not forget who is responsible for the mess this country is in especially california. It's the Republican party's fault. It's gwb and the previous administration who are at fault here. palin, beck and the rest are so quick to forget and hope you all will too that it is them and thier ideology that are the problem. The christian taliban headed by palin, beck, o'donnell will do anything and say anything to undermine the country and the people who live here. They are domestic terrorists who are using fear to gain control...sound familiar? isn't that why were in afganistan? how long before the christian taliban of palin, beck and the like start throwing acid in people's faces? how long before they say you cant be anything but what they are or suffer the penality? how long before they.....?

    September 24, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  8. twirtzy

    What's funny here is the people of Fresno think they should be more offended by her comments than the people of Detroit. She obviously represents the people of Fresno quite well.....

    September 24, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. Eric

    She loves Fresno? LOL After she figured out they have 500,000 people that will vote against her now!! Rich Beeotch!

    September 24, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  10. Blue CA

    She is so full of it her eyes are brown!

    September 24, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  11. BlueDem1

    Oh, brother! Can you imagine if a Democrat made a slighting remark about some rural, conservative area? Oh, the Republican-Tea Party would be up in arms!

    September 24, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  12. byron

    What You tawkin' bout' homes, fa shizel on the mizzel , man hey who needs English, when it comes to cnn

    September 24, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  13. trendo

    A politician (Republican OR Democrat) sticking a foot in their mouth–how is that news? Collectively, they constitute the scum of the earth.

    September 24, 2010 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  14. markiejoe

    Hi Meg. Bye Meg.

    September 24, 2010 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  15. DollyLanna

    Fresno is awful.
    Vote for Jerry Brown

    September 24, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  16. Marcus

    Meg Whitman, with all of her billions of dollars, is trying to BUY the Governorship of California. This woman did not even bother voting for over 20 years! In her own words...."I, like many Americans, was not as engaged as I should have been over the last 20 or 30 years." Why would anyone even pay attention to a self-centered, disengaged Billionaire looking for a way to cut her taxes? You didn't vote for 30 years so don't expect me to vote for you this November!

    September 24, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  17. Tubbykid

    She needs to share a half hour long press conference with Joe Biden, that will make her look like the most intelligent woman in California.

    September 24, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  18. olga

    what an idiot...

    September 24, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
1 2 3