A Montana lawmaker who suggested that wearing yoga pants in public should be illegal while he was introducing a bill to expand the state's decency laws now says he was joking about a ban on the popular form-fitting workout attire.
“At no time during the hearing of that bill was yoga pants brought up," David Moore, a Republican from Missoula, told the Guardian. It was an "off-the-cuff remark in the hallway, and the whole thing just exploded.”
Last week during its story on the proposed legislation, the Associated Press quoted Moore as saying, "Yoga pants should be illegal in public anyway."
The AP, however, said Moore's comment wasn't "off the cuff" at all.
“Our reporter spoke to him at length,” AP spokesman Paul Colford said. “She asked him about that statement twice. After the story appeared, Mr. Moore told associates he was making a joke. Our staffer did not report that the bill would go so far as to outlaw yoga pants. Or that he intended to. We stand by our coverage.”
The bill, HB 365, would have banned Montanans from exposing “genitals, pubic hair, or anus," or "the areola or nipple of the person’s breast with anything less than a fully opaque covering while in a public place," and would have applied, to “any device, costume, or covering that gives the appearance of or simulates the genitals, pubic hair, anus region, or pubic hair region or exposes any device worn as a cover over the nipple or areola of the female breast that simulates and gives the realistic appearance of a nipple or areola while in a public place."
But it was the yoga pants line that drew the attention and ire of the Internet.
"There's a man in Montana imbued with more power than he should have who doesn't like yoga pants," Kate Dries wrote on Jezebel.com.
"David Moore has obviously never tried downward facing dog in shorts," Andy Isaac joked on Uproxx.com.
Moore's bill was introduced in response to a group of naked bicyclists who rode through Missoula last year.
“I want Montana to be known as a decent state where people can live within the security of laws and protect their children and associates from degrading and indecent practices,” Walt Hill, a retired professor who helped draft the legislation, said Tuesday. “I believe this bill is written preserving that reputation.”
On Wednesday, members of the House Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to table the bill "amid giggles."
Moore isn't the first person to spark a media firestorm with comments about yoga pants.
In 2013, Lululemon co-founder Chip Wilson apologized after saying "some women's bodies just don't actually work" for his company's yoga pants after a batch of too-sheer Lululemon garments had to be recalled. A month later, Wilson resigned.