National

I have no problem with women: Leyonhjelm

By AAP Newswire

Independent senator David Leyonhjelm wants Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to call out hatred of men as he continues to defend his heated remarks about Sarah Hanson-Young's personal life.

And the NSW senator has accused his female Greens counterpart of being the worst offender of using unparliamentary language, saying she regularly was forced to withdraw statements while he was not.

Senator Leyonhjelm also stood by his previous description of the prime minister as a "pussy", branding Mr Turnbull a "doormat" for rolling over on misandry.

"Misandry is equally as bad as misogyny. He should also call out misandry. It's equally as bad, it's also sexism," he told ABC radio on Wednesday.

His challenge comes after Mr Turnbull called him to apologise for telling Senator Hanson-Young in parliament to "stop shagging men" and alluding to her private life in subsequent media interviews.

Senator Leyonhjelm on Wednesday again defended himself saying it was "silly" to suggest he had a problem with powerful females.

"I will tell people they're bastards or bitches or to f-off regardless of their gender. It is normal Australian behaviour," he said.

"I don't discriminate between men or women."

Senator Hanson-Young this week said she's put up with sexist comments in parliament for years but the "slut-shaming" from Senator Leyonhjelm went too far.

She wants to stamp out sexism in the workplace and has asked men around Australia to realise what women go through.

"If you see it happening to a woman, if you hear it happening to your sister, to your mother, to your work colleague, say something," an emotional Senator Hanson-Young told reporters on Tuesday.

"Stand up and say something because I can guarantee you she's not having fun."

But Senator Leyonhjelm believes Senator Hanson-Young is a "sexist" who thinks all men are responsible for violent crimes against women.

He denied "slut-shaming" the South Australian senator.

Senator Hanson-Young has fired off legal letters to Senator Leyonhjelm, Sky News and Melbourne radio station 3AW over subsequent interviews with him about their verbal stoush, but has not yet said if she will sue for defamation.

Labor leader Bill Shorten has also called on Senator Leyonhjelm, who continues to stand firm, to apologise.

"This is more than just everyday name-calling," Mr Shorten told reporters in Devonport on Wednesday.

The opposition leader is concerned Senator Leyonhjelm is trying to appeal to less than 10 per cent of the electorate with no regard for what the rest of Australia thinks.

The blue began during a Senate debate last week on a motion calling on the government to allow women to carry tasers, pepper spray and mace to defend themselves from murderers and rapists.

Senator Leyonhjelm believed he heard Senator Hanson-Young say words to the effect of "all men are rapists" - which she denies - and responded with "stop shagging men".

When she approached him, he confirmed his comment. She then called him a creep and he told her to f*** off.