Actress Sophia Bush has vowed to refrain from engaging in bitter political arguments online after becoming involved in a heated spat with a conservative Fox News contributor during the third U.S. Presidential debate on Monday (22Oct12).

The One Tree Hill star, a registered Democrat, was discussing Republican candidate Mitt Romney's lack of support for women's rights with her followers as she watched the televised event in Florida, but she quickly found herself under attack from Republican supporter Michelle Malkin for referring to her vagina as she talked about women's healthcare.

Malkin called out Bush for her "silly" comments and, responding to another Twitter user about the actress, she posted, "(Bush) tweeted about her vagina & thinks she's a modern-day suffragist."

Bush hit back and criticised Malkin for bullying and name-calling, and later tweeted: "I'm all for spirited debate, differing opinions, and the rights to have them. But most of all, I'm for kindness & Women Supporting Women... So you can imagine my surprise at being called 'trifling/c**t/b**ch/w**re/etc' by Malkin's cronies for using the word 'vagina.' Wow."

The TV star returned to the micro-blogging site on Tuesday (23Oct12) after reflecting on the online controversy, and she remained defiant, stating: "In response to last night's madness: Woke up this morning with some excellent clarity. Distance from heated emotions often provides that. And I actually started to laugh. If a cranky, extremist blogger has nothing better to do during the Presidential debates than troll the twitter accounts of actors who she demeans, and slams as unintelligent, rather than writing about policy or what the candidates are saying, then she must be pretty desperate for controversy to stay relevant.

"It's so silly and sad to see a woman, and a mother, attacking and name calling other women... She'll never see my side, or stop attacking and name calling, because she doesn't want to have an actual conversation. She just wants to be inflammatory. And that's cool. But I'm done stooping to that level. I'd rather post information & have open debate with respectful Americans than have a p**sing contest with a condescending Internet bully. #BushForObama (in case you missed that Michelle, that's a pun about my last name And my vagina.)".