US & Canada

Samantha Bee insults Ivanka Trump with obscene phrase

Composite image of Samantha Bee (left) and Ivanka Trump Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Samantha Bee (left) used a highly offensive slur for Ivanka Trump

Comedian Samantha Bee has apologised after insulting Ivanka Trump with an obscene phrase on her television show.

Bee was lambasting the White House adviser and US first daughter over the immigration policy of her father President Donald Trump.

Conservatives demanded Bee be fired like Roseanne Barr, whose sitcom was cancelled this week after she posted a racist tweet.

Bee acknowledged on Thursday she had "crossed a line" with her language.

What did Bee say?

On her political commentary show Full Frontal, Bee attacked the president's daughter over a long-standing US policy of separating undocumented immigrant children from their families.

Presenting Obama-era photos of such young people sleeping in cages, Bee said: "Tearing children away from their parents is so evil, it's the inciting incident in almost every movie we've ever cared about."

She said Ms Trump had been "oblivious" recently to post an Instagram photo of herself hugging her child.

"You know, Ivanka, that's a beautiful photo of you and your child, but let me just say, one mother to another, do something about your dad's immigration practices," Bee said.

She then called Ms Trump a "feckless [expletive]", employing an offensive term for part of the female anatomy.

Bee urged the first daughter to confront her father about the policy.

"He listens to you," she said. "Put on something tight and low-cut and tell your father to [expletive] stop it. Tell him it was an Obama thing and see how it goes, OK?"

The immigration issue has risen to the fore recently since it was reported that US authorities had been unable to contact almost 1,500 unaccompanied children placed in the care of sponsors.

The Trump administration has also been criticised for its policy of separating children from parents who cross the US-Mexico border illegally.

The hashtag #Wherearethechildren has been used hundreds of thousands of times on Twitter.

What's the fallout?

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders called Bee's language "vile and vicious".

"Her disgusting comments and show are not fit for broadcast," she added, demanding the cable network apologise.

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Media captionWhite House defends Trump's reaction to Roseanne firing

TBS, which airs Full Frontal, duly obliged by agreeing that Bee's language was "vile and inappropriate".

"Those words should not have been aired. It was our mistake too, and we regret it," said the network's statement.

Shortly beforehand, car retail website Autotrader.com announced it was pulling its ads from the show.

Bee's outburst comes amid a public debate over incendiary language by TV personalities.

ABC cancelled the sitcom Roseanne this week after its star likened an African-American former aide to President Barack Obama to an ape.

The chief executive of Disney, which owns ABC, said sorry to the ex-adviser, Valerie Jarrett.

That has led President Trump to demand an apology for all the "horrible" things said about him by the entertainment conglomerate's TV personalities.

First Lady Melania Trump has said "the double standard is truly astounding", conservative news organisation the Daily Caller reported.

Barr also weighed in on the situation on Twitter.

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