Carrie Ann Inaba Defends Fellow 'Dancing with the Stars' Judges

The DWTS judge says that Bruno Tonioli's comments about Chaz Bono were not meant to be "negative or derogatory"

Chaz Bono isn't angry about being voted off of Dancing with The Stars earlier this week, but he's not happy with what the judges had to say before they sent him packing. After the 42-year-old contestant's dance with partner Lacey Schwimmer on Monday, judge Bruno Tonioli called Bono "a basketball, a penguin, an Ewok" who is "cute and cuddly." In an interview with Good Morning America, Bono responded by saying that he "took offense" to Tonioli's comments and feels the show treats overweight men differently than the rest of the contestants.

Tonioli's fellow judge Carrie Ann Inaba doesn't agree with Bono, however, and she defended her peer's criticism of Chaz during an appearance on Access Hollywood Wednesday. (Watch below.)

She says that there have been a lot of "issues going on that you have to be sensitive about" this season (and a lot of backlash at the judges). But she doesn't think Bono was treated any differently than the rest of the contestants, and adds that Tonioli's comments weren't meant to be "negative or derogatory."


"The scoring has to do with what they're doing dance-wise," she says. "We are able to separate the two. We get paid to judge."

That's not the only controversy that Inaba talks about, also discussing the showdown between dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy and judge Len Goodman on Monday night. She says it was a "very awkward moment... it was just taken the wrong way."

As a possible explanation for all of this DWTS craziness, Inaba suggest that perhaps her decision to wear a red dress on the show this week is to blame -- because, apparently, something crazy happens every time she does. In that case, problem solved! So long as Inaba steers clear of the red ensembles, anyway.

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