Former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull has unloaded on 2GB radio shock jock Alan Jones, calling the commentator an "appalling misogynist" whose use of violent language against women politicians was disgraceful.
Jones on Friday issued an apology to New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Arden for urging Scott Morrison to "shove a sock" down the throat of his Kiwi counterpart to silence her climate change stance.
Jones' comments on Thursday sparked a furious backlash, including from Prime Minister Morrison, who said the comment was "way out of line".
Speaking on the ABC's Radio National Drive program on Friday, Mr Turnbull, who has regularly clashed with Jones, lashed out at the shock jock.
"His pattern of using abusive and violent language against women, particularly women politicians, is disgraceful," Mr Turnbull said.
"He is an appalling misogynist in the way he talks about women - this is the man who said that Julia Gillard should be put in a chaff bag and dropped off the Heads, then he goes on to urge Morrison to shove a sock down Jacinda Ardern's throat.
"I mean this is appalling language - and at a time when we are doing everything we can as a national priority to stamp out violence against women and children, you have this broadcaster who uses the language of violence against women as part of his regular rhetoric.
"It is disgraceful."
Mr Turnbull declined to say if Jones should be taken off-air, saying that it was a matter for his employers.
Prior to Mr Turnbull's comments, Jones "called in" to 2GB's Drive program to say he had written to Jacinda Ardern and say he was sorry.
"I would never wish her any harm and I would always wish her the best," Jones said.
"My comments, nonetheless, were careless and they should have been, I think, more clearly thought and to that extent, I have erred and made a mistake.
"Now when you do that you've got to be man enough to simply say 'I was wrong and I apologise' - I have done that to her several hours ago."
Mr Turnbull and Jones have long clashed over climate change, beginning when Mr Turnbull was leader of the Liberal Party in 2009 before he was removed because he wanted the Opposition to support the carbon trading scheme proposed by the then Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.
Mr Turnbull blames Jones and several other Sky and News Corp commentators for his removal as prime minister in 2018.
- SMH/The Age