Michigan State Rep, Lisa Brown’s comment using the word, vagina in her address against banning abortions in Michigan state House caused a big dispute, and she was rejected to speak on the another bill by the House speaker.

According to NPR (June 18), she spoke on the floor:

"I have not asked you to adopt and adhere to my religious beliefs. Why are you asking me to adopt yours?" she said. But what came next is what got her in trouble: "And finally, Mr. Speaker, I'm flattered that you're all so interested in my vagina, but 'no' means 'no.'"

I’m interested in the use of the word ‘be flattered’ in the last line, “I'm flattered that you're all so interested in my vagina.”

Is “I’m flattered that” a right expression? To me, a non native English speaker, it appears to say “I’m flattered to do (say, speak, tell you that ....) is more natural, if not grammatical, than saying “I’m flattered that ...”

Is the meaning of “say” included in “be flattered,” not simply meaning “being urged “(to say a nice thing)?

1 Answer 1


Yep, it's perfectly grammatical and idiomatic. I'm flattered that I was invited ~ I'm flattered to have been invited, both absolutely native. Of course, this alternation is only possible when the subject of flatter is also the subject of the embedded clause. In Brown's case, the subjects were different (I versus you). So, she could only have said, as she did, I'm flattered that you're so interested in my vagina. The nearest alternative, My vagina is flattered that you are interested in it (her?) might have sounded facetious.

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