Arianna responds -- via Page Six Salon

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Updated 10 p.m.:

Arianna Huffington uses the first installment of her campaign diary on Salon.com to respond to Susan Estrich's "bad mother" column.

Leaving aside her completely inaccurate description of my relationship with my children -- based on nothing other than my former husband's one-note rants -- it was like reading a piece written in 1903, not 2003. Or even 1973. I guess we haven't come as long a way, baby, as we thought.

I assumed we were long past the argument over whether you could be a woman, a leader and a mother without having the powers that be shaking their heads and pulling out the slime.

This kind of dirty politics is one reason more than 13 million Californians didn't vote in the last election. People are sick and tired of campaigns as demolition derbies, with candidates -- and their designated hatchet men and women -- attacking each other until there is only one candidate left standing.

Earlier in the New York Post gossip column:

Huffington's press secretary Parker Blackman calls the Estrich column "totally inaccurate" and "beneath contempt." He says the girls, 12 and 14, are temporarily staying with their father, who lives in nearby Brentwood, only because Arianna is so busy campaigning. Blackman said: "Arianna's feeling is, 'Attack me on my positions, but attack me as a mother? Come on.' "

What this is about (the public part of the spat, at least...)

Also on Page Six: CAA denies Times story that it's helping Arnold, now that the other talent is riled.


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