Tenn. lawmaker Todd 'truly sorry' for rats comment

A Tennessee lawmaker who likened pregnant illegal immigrants to multiplying rats has apologized.

Republican Rep. Curry Todd said in a statement published Tuesday in The Tennessean newspaper that he is "truly sorry" for his remark.

Todd said in a recent committee meeting that illegal immigrants can "go out there like rats and multiply." He spoke after learning federal law requires the state to extend prenatal care to women regardless of citizenship because all children born in the United States are its citizens.

Todd initially acknowledged he was wrong to use those words but said as recently as Thursday that he was "not apologizing to anyone who may have been offended."

He had been under mounting criticism from rights groups and others.