The campaign for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown said this morning that the Democratic candidate did not suggest calling Republican rival Meg Whitman a "whore" on a voicemail recording to the Los Angeles Police Protective League that was made public last night.
Brown spokesman Sterling Clifford, however, said he didn't know who used the word in the recording.
"Obviously, it's not the kind of thing people should say, and we've apologized for it," Clifford said. "It wasn't Jerry."
Listen for yourself here.
Brown campaign manager Steve Glazer did not address the issue of who said the word in an apologetic statement released last night.
Widely reported news of the comment could hurt Brown's support among women, who the Field Poll shows are already backing Whitman in greater numbers than Republican candidates usually manage.
The comments were inadvertently recorded when Brown thought he had hung up the phone while leaving a message for the police group.
In the recording, Brown complained about how Whitman had allegedly agreed to not touch police pensions to win their support.
"That I have been warned if I crack down on pensions ... that they'll go to Whitman, and that's where they'll go because they know Whitman will give 'em, will cut them a deal, but I won't," Brown said.
In a mix of voices on the recording, it appears Brown says, "What about saying" and perhaps another voice finishes "she's a whore?" Whitman's campaign suggested Brown may have said the word "whore."
"Well, I'm going to use that," Brown responds on the recording. "It proves you've cut a secret deal to protect the pensions."