First Canadian Female PM Denounces Sleeveless Dresses On News Anchors

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief
Font Size:

Canada’s first and only female prime minister denounced sleeveless dresses on news anchors Tuesday.

Kim Campbell, who was a Conservative prime minister after the resignation of Brian Mulroney in 1993, tweeted her outrage, insisting “bare arms undermine credibility and gravitas.”

“I am struck by how many women on television news wear sleeveless dresses- often when sitting with suited men. I have always felt it was demeaning to the women and this suggests that I am right,” Campbell wrote on Twitter. “Bare arms undermine credibility and gravitas!”

That prompted Conservative Member of Parliament Michelle Rempel — a quotable and high-profile official opposition critic — to draw a line in the sand, as she responded via social media: “I firmly believe in the right of Canadians to bare arms.”

Campbell entertained responses and criticism of her tweet as she argued the sleeveless dress standard only applied to on-air news anchors — what they wear privately is their own affair.

The former PM’s sudden outburst marks the second time that sleeveless dresses have become the controversy du jour. When conservative television media Sun News Network — dubbed “Fox News North” by detractors — first went on the air, some commentators objected to the attire of the female anchors who populated the afternoon news programing, suggesting it was inappropriate for them to wear low-cut, sleeveless dresses.

Follow David on Twitter