Anne Widdecombe has said there is "no argument" for positive discrimination in the workplace.
The former politician made the comments on the drive show with Dan Wootton, during a discussion on whether a man or a woman should replace Strictly Come Dancing judge, Darcey Bussell.
"If a woman could replace Len Goodman, why shouldn't a man replace Darcey Bussell? What's the difference?" Ms Widdecombe said.
"Are we going to decide things on merit, or are we always going to decide things according to a gender, a sexual orientation, colour and age, and all these other things."
She added: "There is no argument at all that makes it right to discriminate against someone, which is what you do in positive discrimination."
A talkRADIO poll of 587 people found that 88 per cent of respondents would be happy for a man to replace Ms Bussell on the judging panel, with 12 per cent saying a woman should take the post.
"It is an insult to women. I used to say this when I was an MP and both party leaders were bringing in their own forms of positive discrimination," Ms Widdecombe added.
"It's suggesting that we can't get here on our own merits."