The Republican party has been known to stand against a “woman’s right to choose,” unless in the case of sexual assault, but according to Rep. Todd Akin “legitimate rape” never ends in conception anyway. The Missouri senate nominee was being interviewed by KTVI-TV in St. Louis Sunday (Aug. 20), where he made himself look terrible, and likely insulted women across the country.
When asked if there are any instances when abortion should be allowed, Akin responded with an interesting perspective. “From what I understand, that’s really rare,” he started. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
Almost immediately, Republicans distanced themselves from Akin’s words, with Mitt Romney’s camp releasing a statement against his views. “Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin’s statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape,” Romney’s campaign spokeswoman Amanda Hennerberg said.
“Congressman Akin’s comments on rape are insulting, inexcusable and, frankly, wrong,” Romney reiterated in an interview with the National Review Online. “Like millions of other Americans, we found them to be offensive.”
Akin later recanted his words, saying that he not only “misspoke” but that his previous statement does not reflect the “deep empathy” he holds for “thousands of women who are raped and abused every year.”
Leading up to Akin’s distasteful statement, President Obama’s campaign released a video to six swing states, putting Romney and Ryan’s previous remarks on abortion and women’s health issues on display. Last year, Ryan co-sponsored the “personhood bill” which moves to further define the idea of life starting at conception, thus granting the embryo legal and constitutional rights.
According to a Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation Poll, conducted from July 25 to Aug. 5, 55 percent of Americans believe that abortion should be legal, compared to 42 percent who disagree.
Obama’s stance on abortion may help him hold on to popularity among women voters, where he is leading Romney by 22 percent.
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