Monday, August 20, 2012

GOP Senate Candidate Offers Absurd Comment On 'Legitimate Rape Victims' - UPDATED

Evan McMorris-Santoro, Pema Levy and again Pema Levy at TPM inform us. First, McMorris-Santoro with the background:
Rep. Todd Akin, the Republican nominee for Senate in Missouri who is running against Sen. Claire McCaskill, justified his opposition to abortion rights even in case of rape with a claim that victims of “legitimate rape” have unnamed biological defenses that prevent pregnancy.

“First of all, from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy from rape] is really rare,” Akin told KTVI-TV in an interview posted Sunday. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

This, of course, is utterly ridiculous, as even the youngest American schoolchild of either sex surely knows. Anyone as ignorant as Akin should be confined to house arrest so he won't hurt someone on his way to work in the morning.

Democrats, correctly IMHO, lay blame on the entire GOP for its approach to women's health issues. Pema Levy quotes DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz:
In an email, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz linked Akin’s comments to a larger trend of “backward statements from Republicans on issues affecting women’s health” and pointed to the anti-abortion bills that Akin and Paul Ryan have worked on together.

“Now, Akin’s choice of words isn’t the real issue here,” Wasserman Schultz said in the email. “The real issue is a Republican party — led by Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan — whose policies on women and their health are dangerously wrong.”
Shorter Wasserman Schultz: There is indeed a GOP "war on women," and it is waged on multiple fronts.

Finally, we learn from Pema Levy's other article the surprising reaction of the GOP:
On Twitter Sunday, many Republicans reached the conclusion that Akin is no longer a viable Senate candidate. Until Sunday, Akin was the favorite to take incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill’s seat as Missouri grows increasingly conservative. But both sides of the aisle seem to think Akin’s rape comments could cost him the election.
GOP strategist Patrick Ruffini tweeted a dismissal that makes it clear the GOP doesn't understand the breadth of the problem:
Ultimately Senate nominees are expendable and interchangeable. No political downside in a switcheroo.
No political downside... just as there is apparently no political downside to a GOP war on women's rights.

Why does the GOP regard this as something to be shrugged off? Why should it not cost them this race, and not incidentally, the presidency? What are women to the GOP, chopped liver?

UPDATE 8/21: Akin will not quit, and has issued an ad containing an apology. But I can't help noting that the apology contains these words:
“Rape is an evil act,” Akin says in the ad. “I used the wrong words in the wrong way and for that I apologize. As the father of two daughters, I want tough justice for predators. I have a compassionate heart for the victims of sexual assault. I pray for them.
You know what it means when a Bible-thumper says he'll pray for you: nine times out of ten it means he thinks YOU have sinned! As far as I'm concerned, it's Akin who deserves to go straight to Hell... but that's useless coming from a UU who doesn't believe in Hell, so instead I'll simply hope this inexcusable gaffe is enough to send him home after the election. What a bastard!


  1. What are Republican women to Republicans? And wtf are Republican women doing voting Republican?

  2. Good questions, ellroon, and not easily answered. I suppose Republican women see their roles as limited to "mother" and "wife" and nothing else, not as "independent, thinking, feeling human being." Most Republican women I have known are wealthy in a way other women only dream of. Many... this baffles me... vote the way their husbands vote, whether or not they are told to. I can't help wondering if a Republican woman has a deep self-image problem.

    As for me, I can only sing...

    Republican woman,
    Stay away from me-eee,

  3. Sickening and terrifying. What's next, A Republican lebensborn?

  4. karmanot, remember the days when Nazi analogies were disallowed in serious discussion? Now they are practically a necessity.



• Click here to view existing comments.
• Or enter your new rhyme or reason
in the new comment box here.
• Or click the first Reply link below an existing
comment or reply and type in the
new reply box provided.
• Scrolling manually up and down the page
is also OK.

Static Pages (About, Quotes, etc.)

No Police Like H•lmes