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No apology from Fiorina for comment on Boxer's hairstyle

By Felicia Sonmez
Apparently, Sen. Barbara Boxer's (D-Calif.) hair isn't the only thing that's "so yesterday."

California Senate candidate Carly Fiorina (R) said Sunday morning that she "regretted" her remarks last week, caught on a live mic, in which she related a friend's criticism of Boxer's hairstyle.

But asked whether she's called Boxer to apologize, Fiorina did not answer directly.

"What I think I owe the voters is a commitment to stay focused on the facts, on issues and on the things that really matter, and I will keep that commitment to the voters," the Republican Senate nominee said in an appearance on "Fox News Sunday" this morning.

Fiorina reiterated that she had been quoting a friend who made the comment, and lamented that the gaffe had taken attention away from the serious issues in the campaign.

"I regret this whole situation," Fiorina told host Chris Wallace. "I gave people the opportunity to talk about something petty and superficial, and this is a very serious election year about serious issues."

Fiorina took up some of those issues in her first Sunday show appearances since winning the party nomination last Tuesday. She defended her tenure as CEO at Hewlett-Packard, during which more than 30,000 employees were laid off.

"It's true, I managed Hewlett-Packard through the worst technology recession in 25 years," Fiorina said, "and in those tough times, we had to make some tough calls."

She also addressed the role that social issues will play in the race. California has not elected an anti-abortion rights candidate for senator or governor in nearly 30 years, and a Public Policy Institute of California poll last year showed that two-thirds of Californians oppose overturning Roe v. Wade.

Fiorina, who is opposed to abortion rights, acknowledged that "there are Californians who disagree with me on the sanctity of life." But she added that most Californians also disagree with Boxer's views on taxpayer funding of so-called partial-birth abortions, which Fiorina called "extreme."

Ultimately, the "vast majority" of Californians say that jobs and spending are the primary issues in the race, Fiorina added.

In a separate appearance on "Meet the Press," Fiorina told host David Gregory that if she wins in November, "it will be because the people of California sent me to Washington, not the Republican Party." That prompted Gregory to ask whether Fiorina was a "Schwarzenegger Republican," referring to the state's current governor, a political moderate.

Fiorina responded that she has "very different core values than Arnold Schwarzenegger ran on."

By Felicia Sonmez  |  June 13, 2010; 1:32 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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she didn't double HP's revenue from 44 to 88 billion by being good. she did it by wasting money to buy another company, which kind of automatically increases total revenues. she claims she made tough choices in a bad environment, but no one else laid people off, and all her competitor companies did just the opposite.

if, as she claims, she deserves credit for making the "tough choices" then why did her board pay her 42 million to GO AWAY? They must have thought she made the dumb choices. Republicans are supposed to believe in the judgments of free enterprise. The free enterprise system says Fiorina is a miserable failure. why should voters think the opposite just because she was a CEO? It has to matter if she was a lousy CEO, doesn't it?

Posted by: JoeT1 | June 14, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Yes Carly, stop talking about Senator Boxer's hair and please start talking about the 30,000 jobs you outsourced overseas before HP fired you because you couldn't do your job.

Californians are much more interested in your record than your like or dislike of hair styles.

Posted by: CindyLou3 | June 14, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Anyone whose voting decisions are based on a candidate's hairstyle is stupid enough to vote for Sarah Palin!

Posted by: pishin4 | June 14, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

So this is where this race is going?
Women who are connected with big business may know something about business management, but they may not be savvy, politically.
I'll continue to hope Boxer will be retained.

Posted by: zennheadd | June 14, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Only in a "politically correct" (translation = violation of free speech rights) would speaking the truth be considered something to apologize for. Go figure!

Posted by: IQ168 | June 14, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I swear, the WP would not waste a bit of ink if Boxer had commented on Fiorina's hair. Besides, maybe Carly's comment was a metaphor for Boxer's uber lib YESTERDAY!

Posted by: jobro2 | June 14, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I swear, the WP would not waste a bit of ink if Boxer had commented on Fiorina's hair. Besides, maybe Carly's comment was a metaphor on Boxer's uber lib YESTERDAY!

Posted by: jobro2 | June 14, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Why are the poll ratings for the media lower than for Congress? It's because of the focus on stories like Fiorina's take on Boxer's hair?

Hey!- reporters, pundits, and anchors - if you want to appear shallow, unintelligent, uninformed and childish, lead with the Boxer hair story!

Posted by: pilsener | June 14, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Considering that Ms. Fiorina is a Republican, a failure as a chief executive of a huge corporation, and rather abrasive why should any of us be surprised at her comments about Senator Boxer?

Remember, Carly dear, some day someone may look at your hair style and make a similar comment about you. Unless, of course, you have gone bald by then. In that case the comments may be even more pungent.

Posted by: agrossman1 | June 14, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Who cares? Maybe this is more newsworthy than the oil in the Gulf. Maybe it is more newsworthy than the Bush wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe it is more important than the economy. In the minds of the Post it must be very important.

Posted by: racam | June 14, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Gee, barrysal, I thought you conservatives' complaint was that Obama spends too much time apologizing. Perhaps you could get your story straight?


Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 14, 2010 12:13 AM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina should in no way apologize to Barbara Boxer for the remark that she made about her hair. The LIBERALS never apologize, so why should Fiorina. That would only play into the lib's hands by allowing them to frame the conversation.



Posted by: barrysal | June 13, 2010 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina still owes the shareholders at HP an apology.

The question remains, if (as she claims) she did such a wonderful job why did the board at HP force her out? And why has no other significant corporation offered her equivalent employment? Could this be the reason?

"When Fiorina became CEO in July, 1999, HP's stock price was $52 per share, and when she left 5 1/2 years later in February, 2005, it was $21 per share—a loss of over 60% of the stock's value. During this same time period, HP competitor Dell's stock price increased from $37 to $40 per share."

Then there's this:

"In April 2009, the business magazine web site Condé Nast Portfolio listed Fiorina as one of "The 20 Worst American CEOs of All Time", characterizing the HP-Compaq merger as a widely regarded failure, and citing the halving of HP's stock value under Fiorina's tenure."

According to David W. Packard, son of HP co-founder Dave Packard, Fiorina caused "devastation" at HP.

In a Mercury News (Silicon Valley) article contradicting the notion that HP's co-founders would have endorsed Fiorina for the Senate, David Packard says, "Fiorina's relentless pursuit of size and market share only served her personal ambition to be celebrated as "the most powerful woman in American business"."

As Packard points out, "Let's not forget that the HP board fired Fiorina early in 2005, and no company has hired her since."

Posted by: WhateverHeSaid | June 13, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

The catty comment and the refusal to apologize speaks volumes about Fiorina's ethics and character!

Posted by: samantha3 | June 13, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Carly's comments weren't nearly as disgusting as Barbara's politics!!!! Bye, Bye Babs.

Posted by: Jimbo77 | June 13, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina said something prior to a televised interview that most people would only say among their closest friends. While the statement isn't important, it says something about her judgment and her thinking - and says nothing good. The fact that Fiorina lost her hair to cancer is irrelevant to how her hair currently looks - awful - because she has the wherewithal to buy the very best wigs or get the very best haircut in the world; she has done neither and she has no room to talk about anybody's hair.

Posted by: gsross | June 13, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse


Stop acting like a jerk.

Posted by: brwntrt | June 13, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Carly "call me W the economic wiz kid" Fiorina's core values are so yesterday. The rich irony, of course, is that she gets to run for elected office and vote because some courageous women with bad haircuts fought for those rights and the right of a woman to own her body. She betrays the every time she purses her lips and quacks.

Posted by: medogsbstfrnd | June 13, 2010 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina is too old and manly looking to worry about abortion rights. Talk about an estrogen deficit.

She looks like a man and must hate it when people see her and say "How ya doing, sir? Hey, ain't you the guy that ran HP into the ground?"

Posted by: veerle1 | June 13, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina is nothing but a lowlife, lying, immoral nobody like Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann. The people can easily recognize criminals and lawbreakers who are bought and paid for by the oil companies. HP couldn't wait to get rid of her because she is poisen and if elected in CA, will further poisen and ruin that state. Remember NcDonnel and how he has ruined VA? The same goes for this evil viper!

Posted by: merf-1 | June 13, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina is going to clobber Boxer. Why should Fiorina apologize for telling the truth? Who cares if Boxer was offended? I'm offended that her stupid votes in Congress affect me and I can't even vote against her out here in Iowa!! Go Fiorina! We need more people like you to get rid of the Obamaleftist!

Posted by: georges2 | June 13, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina said something near prior to a televised interview that most people would only say among their closest friends. While the statement isn't important, it says something about her judgment and her thinking - and says nothing good. The fact that Fiorina lost her hair to cancer is irrelevant to how her hair currently looks - awful - because she has the wherewithal to buy the very best wigs or get the very best haircut in the world; she has done neither and she has no room to talk about anybody's hair.

Posted by: gsross | June 13, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

Maybe, just maybe if the press were criticized enough for making things like this an issue instead of making ISSUES the issue, we wouldn't be in the state we're in.

Shame on CNN and shame on every lazy journalist and every worthless media outlet including the WAPO that is passing this whole thing off as news.

The voters of California don't care what Barbara Boxer's hair looks like or what Carly Fiorina says about it. Get off your lazy buns and focus on what matters, WAPO.

Posted by: exco | June 13, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I would call Carly doubling the revenues of HP from 44 billion per year to 88 billion per year "running HP into the ground". She left because of the price of HP stock dropping in relationship to that of Dell Computer's. She worked her way through college working in a hair salon. She was not born into wealth. She earned her wealth by hard work. She is a graduate of Stanford University, Maryland University, and MIT. HP's own website describes her accomplishments at

Posted by: good_angel | June 13, 2010 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina and Sarah Palin have a lot in common.

Posted by: marrobcastle | June 13, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

It's a cheap labeling by Calling people who are against Carly liberals. True conservatives are those who believe personal responsibilities. Carly Fiorina is a very irresponsible person, to the least. She is a cancer surviver, people respect her for that. But that doesn't mean she is automatically qualified to be a Senator. She's good looking and knows how to be in style, and people respect that, too. But that doesn't make her a Senator either.

What else does she qualify? A big mouth talker like Obama? She knows how to talk big and do little just like Obama. Certainly she knows how to pass the blame to others, just like Obama. Maybe that's another qualification if Obama qualifies. So, vote for Carly if you think she qualities because of that.

Posted by: Edhomer | June 13, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

It's ironic that Carly Fiorina chooses to defend her failure on Lucent, HP with dot-com bust, just like how Obama dumps all the blames on Bush. Those who sings for Carly Fiorina may well go online to find Carly's record. Dot-com busted, Lucent was gone. But what about Google, Cisco, and many others? How successful would it be for a CEO who drove the company off the cliff with the economy?

Now, HP's new boss turned the company around with a complete Un-Carly management style. It's on all the HP's book.

Mark Hurd can run HP with Compaq as a value-added subsidiary. But not Carly Fiorina. for Carly, taking over Compaq is like a snake eats an aligator. Carly's career at HP died bebause of her imcompetence of the process. She took over Compaq just for a sake of making splash, as she had been doing for all her careers.

Posted by: Edhomer | June 13, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina's comment:

"I gave people the opportunity to talk about something petty and superficial, and this is a very serious election year about serious issues."

Seems to point back at her for being petty and superficial herself.

Posted by: donnl | June 13, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Taking a page out of the book of G.W. Bush, Fiorina ran a company (HP) into the ground, and now she wants to run the country further into the ground.

Posted by: ppsikogios | June 13, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

History tells that Carly Fiorina is the type of "show maker" CEO. She knows how to make splash. Once the show was over, she moved on to next job and left all the junk for others to clean up.

Posted by: Edhomer | June 13, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

The nasty comments about Carly's hair are from people that are either incredibly unread or very cruel. Carly lost her hair during cancer treatment and is only now getting it back. The comments by wu78754 were both especially bad and stupid. Carly worked at the same company I worked at (Lucent) previous to her being at HP. I can guarantee you she is not a lesbian. She is a brilliant hard working attractive woman that just happened to take over a technology company just as the technology stock bubble burst. She wasn't hired as the head of HP by their board without them knowing her brilliant mind,hard work ethic, and great management ability. The takeover of Compaq is still reaping rewards for HP. What is hurting HP since she left is the company turning to incompetent people overseas for technical support. During Carly's reign over HP the revenues there doubled from 44 billion dollars to 88 billion dollars. To date she is still the ONLY woman to lead a Fortune 20 company. The much defamed, at the time, takeover of Compaq is now seen as one of the most successful takeover in high tech history. On the other hand Barbara Boxer is supporting the rights of illegal aliens to American community services while California is 23 billion dollars in debt.

Posted by: good_angel | June 13, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina nearly destroyed HP (shame on her to even claim the credit for HP lately success) at the time when she was fired. If she became as a Senator, she would destroy the country. I'm a conservative, and I'm calling every to look at Carly's history of her career and see how much demage she had done to all the companies she once managed.

Posted by: Edhomer | June 13, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

"there are Californians who disagree with me on the sanctity of life."? Very, very few, I think...

Actually, most of us embrace the sanctity of life as a critical issue. But we also believe that a woman should have the right to choose and that the government should mind its own business...

Sorry, I seem to have gone off topic for a bit... This is about hair, isn't it...?

Posted by: robinoliver | June 13, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Again, Liberals show their ignorance. Fiorina had cancer and lost all her hair. She wore wigs and now that her hair has grown back a little, she tabled the wig.
Liberals only know what the elitists tell them to think. They are like sheep. Why else would 60% of them vote for Greene in S. Carolina. Why else would they vote for Obama with absolutely no executive experience. He is the laughing stock of the world. Liberal's have turned our country into what it is today... the welfare state. Hey liberal, can you say baaaaahhhh

Posted by: Steve863 | June 13, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

WaPo, this is the best you can do when we have the gulg oil crisis.

Posted by: farmsnorton | June 13, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

All she has to run on is hair. This is a candidate who while head of HP shipped jobs off shore thus decimating the American work force. When she and Boehner call for more American jobs what they are really preaching is for more American jobs moved off shore. Their records and affiliation prove this as fact.

Posted by: cario1 | June 13, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I don't believe for a second that the comment was a friends. How can this woman diss another womans hairstyle when hers looks so incredibly bad, and Boxers is nice looking at the very least. Maybe Boxer is out of fashion, but her's is in style and looks ridiculous for a woman of her age. Older women usually do wear older hairstyles.This is like Don King criticizing someone else's hair. Hey carly, look in a mirror before criticizing someone else's looks.

Posted by: kessler1066 | June 13, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina states govt should run like a business and she is experienced. Well let me see-she bought compaq which HP determined was a major mistake- she exported jobs overseas and caused US layoffs- then she was fired. Guess she is a good choice. Ha

Posted by: 65651 | June 13, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Ha! Bit like the pot calling the kettle black-- Fiorina just looks WEIRD lol... That's why there's been so many unsuccessful attempts to try to frame her publicity shots in different color backgrounds/shades...It's like her publicists have been thrashing about trying to find the perfect background nuance to make her look good and they can't find it lol. Boxer's a babe ime.

Posted by: JustinMcC | June 13, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Lefty media going to apologize to Sarah Palin for starting yet another false and sexist rumor about her?

Posted by: WashingtonDame | June 13, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I'll say it - Both of them have BAD HAIR and neither is attractive. There, I said it!!! Now, let's get over the pettiness and get on with the substance ladies.

Posted by: mossadams | June 13, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina first opportunity to say something meaningful, the bad hair day foot in the mouth event overshadowed anything of substance. She said she made a mistake but refuse to apologize? A "wise Latina" she is not. She won't even claim the republican party. She stands for nothing; therefore, is doomed to fall for anything. She failed at HP, never held public office, barely ever voted, and somehow is qualified to be a US senator.

Posted by: dmscontractor | June 13, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Fiorina trashed HP; rather than do the honorable thing and step down she demanded and received one of the sweetest severance packages imaginable. She's bad for CA and bad for US. Boxer is by far the lesser of two evils, if it comes down to that for CA voters. Please don't let her buy a seat in the Senate.

Posted by: emag | June 13, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Fiona's chore value is hair !

Other than that her tenure at HP was nothing but blunders. Could not even managed a growing company clear objectives set out by Lou Platt.

She was FIRED out of HP ruthlessly !

Posted by: weijpan | June 13, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Barbara Boxer's hair is a bigger threat to national security than BP spill. Fiorina got that right. That's why I will be casting my vote for her this November.

California is clearly a failed state and they are looking more like North Korea everyday. I agreed, Fiorina shouldn't have given the media this silly stuff to talk about, it a distraction. But no matter, it's about time we unemployed Barbara Boxer, she failed California, her hair failed her. God, what is that hair.

Posted by: jihobbyist | June 13, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Carly has not said why she was fired by HP Carly's hair I think are wigs because cancer

Posted by: z50patgail02 | June 13, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

The things that get reported is so crazy....

I think we should put these two chicks in T-shirts, wet them down and throw them into a mud pit and the last one standing wins!!!

Posted by: alexjazzwashington774 | June 13, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Carly Fiorina with her butch lesbian haircut is the last person that should criticize Boxer on hairstyle.

Okay, we get it, the GOP will send a lesbian to compete with the Democrat, but don't be pot calling the kettle black. She should focus more on California's welfare than on Boxer's hairstyle.

Did Carly Fiorina realize she's not running for Miss California USA?

Posted by: wu78754 | June 13, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

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