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Tammy Wynette Wants To Go ‘Toe to Toe’ With Mrs. Clinton With AM-Wynette Lyrics

January 28, 1992 GMT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Hey, what’s wrong with standing by your man? Not a thing, says Tammy Wynette, who is ″mad as hell″ at would-be first lady Hillary Clinton’s suggestion that it’s not enough just to stand by your man.

Mrs. Clinton’s comment came Sunday on CBS-TV’s ″60 Minutes″ when her husband, Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton, defended himself against charges of infidelity.

″I’m not sitting here like some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette,″ said Mrs. Clinton, trying to explain her support was more than routine.

That drew fire from Nashville where Wynette is demanding an apology on behalf of all the women who, as she sings, are willing to forgive and accept ″... after all he’s just a man.″

″With all that is in me I resent your caustic remark,″ the 49-year-old country singer wrote Mrs. Clinton on Monday. ″I, with no apologies, am as angry as I can be with your statement. ...

″Mrs. Clinton, you have offended every woman and man who love that song - several million in number. I believe you have offended every true country music fan and every person who has ‘made it on their own’ with no one to take them to a White House.

″I would like you to appear with me on any forum, including networks, cable or talk shows and stand toe to toe with me. I can assure you, in spite of your education, you will find me to be just as bright as yourself.

″I will not stand by and allow you or any other person to embarrass, humiliate and degrade me on national television and print without hearing from me.″

Mrs. Clinton rolled her eyes and slapped her forehead when told of Wynette’s reaction Tuesday during a meeting with the editorial board of the Grand Junction (Colo.) Daily Sentinel.

″I didn’t mean to hurt Tammy Wynette as a person,″ she said. ″I happen to be a country-western fan. If she feels like I’ve hurt her feelings, I’m sorry about that.″

Clinton, whose bid for the Democratic presidential nomination has been marred by allegations of infidelity, was campaigning in Texas on Tuesday.

Wynette, who has recorded more than 50 albums, was not available for interviews because she was seeing a doctor for a throat infection. But her husband, George Richey, described her as ″mad as hell and she probably will be for a time.″

Richey said he and his wife were watching Mrs. Clinton’s interview when the comment was made.

″She was totally speechless,″ Richey said of his wife. ″It was totally off base.″

The song ″Stand by Your Man″ was written by Wynette and Billy Sherrill and was a million-selling hit in 1969.

It was a follow-up to the hit ″D-I-V-O-R-C-E.″