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Candidate apologizes for rape comments, but won't abandon race

By Associated Press

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 12:10 p.m. HST, Aug 20, 2012


ST. LOUIS >> Missouri Rep. Todd Akin apologized  today for his televised comments that women's bodies are able to prevent pregnancies if they are victims of "a legitimate rape," but he refused to heed calls to abandon his bid for the Senate.

Appearing on former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee's radio show, Akin said rape is "never legitimate."

"It's an evil act. It's committed by violent predators," Akin said. "I used the wrong words the wrong way."

Calls for Akin's exit from the race grew today, with at least two Republican senators — Scott Brown of Massachusetts and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin — saying he should resign the party's nomination.

But Akin, who has served six terms, pledged to continue the race against Democratic incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill.

"The good people of Missouri nominated me, and I'm not a quitter," he said. "And my belief is we're going to take this thing forward and by the grace of God, we're going to win this race."

Asked in an interview Sunday on KTVI-TV if he would support abortions for women who have been raped, Akin said: "It seems to me, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, that's really rare. If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."

Later Sunday, Akin released a statement saying that he "misspoke" during the interview, though the statement did not say specifically which points were in error.

"In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it's clear that I misspoke in this interview, and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year," Akin's statement said.

Akin also said he believes "deeply in the protection of all life" and does "not believe that harming another innocent victim is the right course of action."

Brown, considered to be one of the most vulnerable Senate Republicans in the November election, said Akin's comments were "outrageous, inappropriate and wrong."

"There is no place in our public discourse for this type of offensive thinking," said Brown, who is locked in a tight race with Elizabeth Warren.

Brown said Akin should apologize and resign the Senate nomination.

Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican, said in a tweet that Akin "should step aside today for the good of the nation."

As his political support waned, Akin also confronted problems paying for his campaign.

An official with the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee said the group's head, Texas Sen. John Cornyn, called Akin on Monday to tell him that the committee had withdrawn $5 million in advertising planned for the Missouri race.

The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the conversation was private.

Publicly, Cornyn called Akin's comments "indefensible" and suggested he take 24 hours to consider "what is best for him, his family, the Republican Party and the values that he cares about and has fought for."

Moments after Akin's apology, President Barack Obama said Akin's remarks underscore why politicians — most of whom are men— should not make health decisions on behalf of women.

"Rape is rape" Obama said. And said the idea of distinguishing among types of rape "doesn't make sense to the American people and certainly doesn't make sense to me."

Akin also drew a swift rebuke from the campaign of presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

Romney and Ryan "disagree with Mr. Akin's statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape," Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg said.

Romney went further in an interview with National Review Online, calling Akin's comments "insulting, inexcusable and frankly wrong."

"Like millions of other Americans, we found them to be offensive," Romney said.

In an emailed statement Sunday, McCaskill said it was "beyond comprehension that someone can be so ignorant about the emotional and physical trauma brought on by rape."

This month, the 65-year-old congressman won the state's Republican Senate primary by a comfortable margin.

During the primary campaign, Akin enhanced his standing with TV ads in which former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee praised him as "a courageous conservative" and "a Bible-based Christian" who "supports traditional marriage" and "defends the unborn."

Ushering Akin from the race is complicated by the fact that he has never been a candidate beholden to the party establishment. Since being elected to Congress in 2000, Akin has relied on a grassroots network of supporters. His Senate campaign is being run by his son.

Behind the scenes, Republican officials were looking for intermediaries trusted by Akin to try to coax him from the race.

Missouri election law allows candidates to withdraw 11 weeks before Election Day. That means the deadline to exit the Nov. 6 election would be 5 p.m. Tuesday. Otherwise, a court order would be needed to remove a candidate's name from the ballot.

If Akin were to leave, state law holds that the Republican state committee has two weeks to name a replacement. The candidate would be required to file within 28 days of Akin's exit.

Akin, a former state lawmaker who was first elected to the House in 2000, has a long-established base among evangelical Christians and was endorsed in the primary by more than 100 pastors.

___

Associated Press writers Henry Jackson in Washington and Chris Blank in Jefferson City, Mo., contributed to this report.







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Taisho808 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 20,2012 | 03:38AM
kailua000 wrote:
its not normal. he's an idiot politician. lately all the dems and republican have been backtracking on stupid comments: aka "chains" comment from Biden drew a huge backlash from the African American community. Cant blame republicans for this idiot just like you cant blame all dems for Bidens comments.
on August 20,2012 | 05:16AM
Taisho808 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 20,2012 | 10:19AM
Paulh808 wrote:
Keep repeating a BS dem talking point and ignorant people may believe it.
on August 20,2012 | 11:06AM
sjean wrote:
yes, even ignorant republicans.
on August 20,2012 | 11:58AM
Anonymous wrote:
Term limits..........
on August 20,2012 | 06:24AM
allie wrote:
Radical, anti-American Republicans pose a real threat to this country and the progress we have fought for over the past decades. Some of it is sheer ignorance but much of it is being cynically manipulated by billionaires who stand to gain from these people in office.
on August 20,2012 | 10:15AM
Paulh808 wrote:
Great lefty talking point, but people are getting educated to the lefts baloney.
on August 20,2012 | 11:07AM
sjean wrote:
I like baloney.
on August 20,2012 | 11:58AM
hawaiikone wrote:
You do realize exchanging the "republicans" for "democrats" would make your comment just as valid.
on August 20,2012 | 04:19PM
loquaciousone wrote:
OOPS
on August 20,2012 | 04:32AM
kailuabred wrote:
He's toast.
on August 20,2012 | 04:52AM
allie wrote:
tHE RADICALIZED REPUBLICAN pARTY IS NOTHING LIKE IT ONCE WAS. iT ATTRRACTS THE WORST ELEMENTS OF SOCIETY
on August 20,2012 | 10:19AM
Paulh808 wrote:
And the baby killing Dems are clean.
on August 20,2012 | 11:07AM
Taisho808 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 20,2012 | 11:47AM
hawaiikone wrote:
Are you serious?
on August 20,2012 | 04:20PM
Dawg wrote:
Hillbilly mentality! Give the boy more moonshine, then leave him on a boat with no motor in the middle of the Pacific.
on August 20,2012 | 06:01AM
loquaciousone wrote:
Don't forget his shrimp nets....small minds eat small shrimps?
on August 20,2012 | 08:06AM
allie wrote:
Lingle supports him!
on August 20,2012 | 10:16AM
Dawg wrote:
On behalf of Senator McCaskill, A BIGGER MAHALO! Enjoy the looney farm.
on August 20,2012 | 06:03AM
Anonymous wrote:
Isn't it odd that plagiarist Uncle Joe Biden can say stupid stuff daily and it doesn't get any print at all, but don't let a Republican say something as stupid as Joe and it is front page news.
on August 20,2012 | 06:23AM
IAmSane wrote:
This is miles away from even Joe Biden's standards.
on August 20,2012 | 07:10AM
Bdpapa wrote:
Yeah, Biden is off but this guy is something else.
on August 20,2012 | 07:50AM
Bean808 wrote:
Right. You just ignore Biden and so does the media.
on August 20,2012 | 09:34AM
IAmSane wrote:
That's not what I said at all, you illiterate harp darp.
on August 20,2012 | 09:43AM
hawaiikone wrote:
classy comment....
on August 20,2012 | 04:22PM
allie wrote:
Biden's statement made sense in context.
on August 20,2012 | 10:17AM
Paulh808 wrote:
If you are a racists dem.
on August 20,2012 | 11:09AM
Taisho808 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 20,2012 | 11:48AM
sjean wrote:
Don't take offense. To conservatives, Science is faith-based....a man CAN walk on water, and a woman's egg puts up a protective forcefield when it senses a legitimate rape. Adam lived off the flesh of dInosaurs and Noah really did have 2 of every species on earth on his ark. Approximately 15 million plants, animals and insects.
on August 20,2012 | 12:03PM
Pacej001 wrote:
His statement, and particularly his delivery, was racists and extremely condescending.
on August 20,2012 | 03:39PM
allie wrote:
Biden's joke has received tons of publicity hon. Get a clue
on August 20,2012 | 10:16AM
KeithHaugen wrote:
He's an absolute "nut case." Even Republicans are saying so.
on August 20,2012 | 06:33AM
allie wrote:
yup..but Lingle is standing tall for her man
on August 20,2012 | 10:17AM
hawaiikone wrote:
Must have missed that being mentioned in this article. Read it twice to. But then again, as you so frequently do, you may be just saying something stupid.
on August 20,2012 | 04:31PM
HawaiiCheeseBall wrote:
Scary part is that there are probably a lot of folks who are just as ignorant and believe the same thing.
on August 20,2012 | 06:52AM
paauilofarmer wrote:
misspoke????
on August 20,2012 | 07:33AM
loquaciousone wrote:
It means I said something that I meant but shouldn't have said because it's not politically correct but in my own home I always say stupid things like this because that's how I really feel but I can't say those things in public especiallly on national tv because it might make voters publically mad even though voter think the same things in their homes but don't want to admit it in public because they don't want to be perceived as racist even though in reality they are....
on August 20,2012 | 03:34PM
Descartes22 wrote:
If they were not like Baum's Scarecrow, the nutcase Republicans in the south and midwest would keep their warped beliefs to themselves and just let their Citizens United unleashed dollars spew propaganda. Incidentally, Romney does not participate in U.S. press conferences or meaningful (i.e. non-Murdoch interviews) for this very reason. As his gaffes to the British and Israel press corps recently demonstrated, it's best for the 65 year old to let Rove's commercials communicate for him. Crazies like Missouri's Republican Senate standard bearer should heed the strategy.
on August 20,2012 | 07:40AM
Paulh808 wrote:
The MSM tells you it's a gaff and you swallow hook line and sinker!
on August 20,2012 | 11:11AM
Taisho808 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 20,2012 | 12:27PM
hawaiikone wrote:
Seems like both of you prefer swallowing to thinking.
on August 20,2012 | 05:08PM
Bdpapa wrote:
What is wrong with this guy? This guy is right out of the South in the ʻ50s. I thought this ignorence was gone a long time ago.
on August 20,2012 | 07:49AM
loquaciousone wrote:
The "good ole white boy" network still is alive.....look at the republican presidential ticket.
on August 20,2012 | 08:07AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Racist comment. Do you have facts, any facts, that Romney or Ryan are racially motivated? On the other hand, Obama has used subtle racial division as part of his divide and conquer political strategy. I'd say that's worse.
on August 20,2012 | 09:35AM
loquaciousone wrote:
You mean they're not white?
on August 20,2012 | 10:43AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Some day there will come a time when a man will be judged by the content of his character, not the color of his skin. I think a famous person said that. The point; so what if they're "white"? Are they good men, the best choice to run the country, otherwise we're just judging books by their covers, like we did during the last election. PS. "White" is a racists term in itself. There are dozens of subcultures and ethnicities among our paler citizens.
on August 20,2012 | 03:46PM
sjean wrote:
White America is so gullible as to fall for Obama's divide & conquer strategy? As for Romney, the original teachings of Mormonism referred to blacks as a mistake. Let's not forget he is a LDS Bishop.
on August 20,2012 | 12:06PM
Descartes22 wrote:
On the planet that George Romney runs, he must be turning over in his bed at his son's actions.
on August 20,2012 | 12:11PM
Descartes22 wrote:
Like the Republican party's back in time economic and foreign policies (Romney feels Russia is our biggest geopolitical threat), their social policies and beliefs hearken to another era.
on August 20,2012 | 08:15AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Well, if you count the nukes, the only existential threat to the US, they are. To ignore that fact and their foreign policy positions would be pretty foolish. And what era do Obama's social policies harken to? The 1930's before the ugly face of socialism revealed itself in the rise and fall of the Soviet Union and Chinese communism. That's right, Obama is FDR-lite and his administration is filled, as was FDRs, with people who place their faith in top down government over belief in individual freedom.
on August 20,2012 | 09:34AM
Descartes22 wrote:
China and Pakistan also have nuclear arms, as far as more dangerous existential threats. China and the Middle East should be at the top of foreign policy decision-making - not Russia. Romney's comments to this end highlighted his insular thinking. I hope Romney does not think Russia is still called the U.S.S.R. Don't know what era of social policy you believe the President's policies "harken to." But the gist of the article you have posted to certainly suggests a mindset from a bygone era. The policies and practices of the U.S.A., which does have a legislative and judicial branch, do not bespeak those of a socialist system. A diet of Murdoch does not change the essential dynamic of America as a democratic system premised on capitalism.
on August 20,2012 | 10:38AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Pakistan can't deliver them and can easily be deterred. China has limited numbers and zero incentive to damage its primary creditor. Neither are more dangerous than Russia. Who said Russia is at the top? No one. However, considering the fowled up "reset" and Russian interference in the ME, they deserve attention. Obama harkens to the post depression 1930s and the FDR policies that, along with LBJ's great society welfare programs, are coming home to roost like great big debt chickens. So what does a democratic structure have to do with whether or not a nation drifts into socialism. The USSR had all the trappings of democratic form. France is a democracy and thoroughly socialist. And give me a break with the lame Fox News slur. Progressive arrogance is just as bad as any extreme right wing viewpoint.
on August 20,2012 | 03:56PM
sjean wrote:
Where do you live? Obama is clearly a Capitalist.
on August 20,2012 | 12:08PM
kainalu wrote:
The first vote I ever cast was for Richard Nixon. For the better half of my youth, I had considered myself a Republican. I voted for Reagan his 2nd term, and daddy Bush after that. I don't recognize the GOP anymore. They haven't tilted to the "right", they're leaping off the cliff to the "right". I'm sincere when I post that the Republicans have become scarry.
on August 20,2012 | 08:07AM
Notawannabe wrote:
I know exactly what you mean. My first ever vote was for Ronald Reagan. It's fools like this that led me away from the GOP.
on August 20,2012 | 08:16AM
loquaciousone wrote:
I agree with you and I might add the Democrats aren't far behind with Obama's and his wife's attempt to control every aspect of our personal life. I believe that's called Socialism... so much for Democracy.
on August 20,2012 | 08:17AM
Bdpapa wrote:
I see it that way also.
on August 20,2012 | 08:41AM
tiki886 wrote:
What did you expect? His daddy was a communist and his mother was a communist. He surrounds himself with communists. Frank Marshall Davis was his mentor and surrogate father, Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, Bill being the unrepentant bomber, Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven, Van Jones, Anita Dunn - Mao's symp, Rev Jeremiah Wright - Black Liberation theologist, etc. All commies!
on August 20,2012 | 09:20AM
Descartes22 wrote:
I suppose Hawai`i's Obama is the Manchurian Candidate who became President.
on August 20,2012 | 09:32AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Essentially correct. This is as close as truth and fiction get.
on August 20,2012 | 10:04AM
Descartes22 wrote:
Stanley Dunham of Kansas is no Angela Lansbury.
on August 20,2012 | 10:39AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Dear Democrats, Congratulations. Your hero is now running the dirtiest presidential campaign in US history and, today, in his press conference, he flat out lied about his campaign's role in it, saying that no one in his campaign has called Romney a felon and denying any connection to the ad suggesting Romney caused a cancer death. Both statements are demonstrable, provable lies. Are you sure we need a national leader willing to go this low?
on August 20,2012 | 08:23AM
serious wrote:
Agreed, he had half of the nation on the federal dole--and the sad fact is that they will probably vote for him---the ones that sign checks on the back!!!
on August 20,2012 | 08:47AM
allie wrote:
We are all voting Obama. Ryan will hurt America and he is controlled by Israel and billionaire casino owners like ADELSON
on August 20,2012 | 10:18AM
Pacej001 wrote:
Of course you are all voting Obama. Not surprised. I'm just surprised at the absolute lack of doubt on your side. No national budget in three years. Unemployment on the rise. Nearly 2,000 waivers to Obamacare granted, many to favored constituencies. Job killing, ideological actions: NLRB vs. Boeing, gulf oil moratorium, Keystone pipeline. Unconstitutional executive acts: Recess appointments, birth control mandate. Lack of transparency on weapons shipments to Mexican drug cartels. No credible plan to assure solvency of Medicare and Social Security.---- The list goes own, but you folks are rock solid, have no doubt. Why not?!?
on August 20,2012 | 04:03PM
Descartes22 wrote:
From the party of the Swift Boaters, where a war hero is torpedoed by a fortunate son draft dodger, comes whinings about the dirtiest campaign in history. The Supreme Court - and both parties - are to be blamed for the incendiary, distorted propaganda disseminated in today's campaign environment.
on August 20,2012 | 09:37AM
Pacej001 wrote:
The Swift Boat people were John Kerry's contemporaries, fellow Vietnam veterans who knew the quality of his service directly and remembered his treasonous behavior after he left the service. Yes, both parties are slinging the mud, it's just that Obama's campaign seems to be the most blatantly egregious.
on August 20,2012 | 10:07AM
Descartes22 wrote:
Locate some objectivity. Your feasting too much on Republican "talking points"
on August 20,2012 | 10:43AM
Paulh808 wrote:
And of course you are very objective!
on August 20,2012 | 11:28AM
sjean wrote:
Descartes22, you expect any of these posters to recognize the Citizens United ruling? Man, you oversetimate the juvenile minds.
on August 20,2012 | 12:11PM
hawaiikone wrote:
You seem to fit right in the "oversetimated" group.
on August 20,2012 | 05:25PM
entrkn wrote:
Is this a new low for the GOP or is it their new standard?
on August 20,2012 | 10:51AM
Paulh808 wrote:
I know he makes us look like democrats.
on August 20,2012 | 11:28AM
hanoz808 wrote:
ignorant
on August 20,2012 | 11:42AM
Denominator wrote:
Akin - how does anyone that stupid get elected by either party and we all know there are people in both parties that are that stupid. We have incredibly simple minded candidates here in Hawaii, and we will probably re-elect them too.
on August 20,2012 | 01:13PM
HawaiiCheeseBall wrote:
OK here is what we do, we ask this guy to produce his BIRTH CERTIFICATE. He is going to ignore us, and when he does we can say that he is obviously a foreign-born Muslim plant whose real intention was to help the Democrats! Sure beats the truth he is an ignorant Repubican member of congress who won the Republican primary to face a sitting Democratic Senator. .
on August 20,2012 | 03:45PM
tinapa wrote:
Rep Akin's radical statement is not new in the world of extreme conservatism. Most Republicans including Ryan and Romney subscribe and worship to this radical concept. Akin was just polishing the image of Republicans as merchants of hate and peddlers of bigotry and that's why Romney is going to lose.
on August 20,2012 | 06:07PM
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