Joan Rivers refuses to apologise for claiming Michelle Obama is ‘a transgender’

Joan Rivers onstage during Comedy Central's "Roast of Joan Rivers" at CBS Studios on July 26, 2009 in Studio City, California.

Joan Rivers has scoffed at calls to apologise after she claimed that President Barack Obama is gay and his wife Michelle is “a transgender“.

The 81-year-old comedian caused controversy earlier this week, after appearing at a book signing in New York and officiating at the wedding of two gay fans, when she was asked whether she thought the US would ever see a gay president.

Responding, she said: “We already have it with Obama, so let’s just calm down.”

“You know Michelle is a tranny”, she adds, and when asked to clarify, she says the first lady is “a transgender, we all know.”

Refusing calls to apologise, she said in a statement to CNN: “I think it’s a compliment. She’s so attractive, tall, with a beautiful body, great face, does great makeup.

“Take a look and go back to La Cage Au Follies [sic]. The most gorgeous women are transgender.

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“Stop it already… and if you want to talk about ‘politically correct’, I think this is a ‘politically incorrect’ attack on me because I’m old, Jewish, a woman and a ‘hetty’ – a heterosexual… and I plan to sue the reporter who, when he turned off his camera, tried to touch me inappropriately on the ass – luckily he hit my ankle. Read the book… if you think that’s silly, wait [until] you see what I say about FDR and Eleanor!”