Todd Akin Says Raped Women Do Not Get Pregnant So No Abortions

We’ve seen quite a few despicable Republicans breeze through these pages since 2010 (even before, but I want to narrow the field to the Tea Party’s finest).  Missouri doesn’t get much mention here but that’s about to change with the Republican selection of Tea Party favorite, Todd Akin to oppose Democrat Claire McCaskill for the United States Senate.

In an interview with St. Louis television station KTVI-TV  (a Fox affiliate) six-term Republican Akin went on record as saying:

No need to provide a full transcript here; this is damning enough:

“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”

Because it apparently doesn’t punish a rape victim to give birth to the child of her rapist.

Now you know, if you doubted before, why Akin can say he is Missouri’s most conservative Republican. Of course, the firestorm was immediate. What is ” legitimate”  rape? Is there some sort of ” “illegitimate” rape? Are we back to Paul Ryan’s non-forcible rape deal again with Republicans? Do all Republicans have a genetic defect that prevents them from understanding the workings of the human body?

This is what his opponent, Clare McCaskill had to say:

“It is beyond comprehension that someone can be so ignorant about the emotional and physical trauma brought on by rape,” said McCaskill. “The ideas that Todd Akin has expressed about the serious crime of rape and the impact on its victims are offensive.”

Even Romney and Ryan backed away:

“Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin’s statement. A Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape.”

All this controversy probably fazed Akin less than the fact that even the mainstream media, so normally prone to overlooking Republican extremism, picked up on it: from CBS “Mo. Rep. Todd Akin: Rape rarely leads to pregnancy.”

Akin, of course, tried to “advance in a different direction” but he is not a Marine surrounded by the Chinese at the Chosin Reservoir and instead of escaping fell flat on his face:

“As a member of Congress, I believe that working to protect the most vulnerable in our society is one of my most important responsibilities, and that includes protecting both the unborn and victims of sexual assault.  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.  Those who perpetrate these crimes are the lowest of the low in our society and their victims will have no stronger advocate in the Senate to help ensure they have the justice they deserve.

“I recognize that abortion, and particularly in the case of rape, is a very emotionally charged issue.  But I believe deeply in the protection of all life and I do not believe that harming another innocent victim is the right course of action. I also recognize that there are those who, like my opponent, support abortion and I understand I may not have their support in this election.

“But I also believe that this election is about a wide-range of very important issues, starting with the economy and the type of country we will be leaving our children and grandchildren.  We’ve had 42 straight months of unacceptably high unemployment, trillion dollar deficits, and Democratic leaders in Washington who are focused on growing government, instead of jobs.  That is my primary focus in this campaign and while there are those who want to distract from that, knowing they cannot defend the Democrats’ failed economic record of the last four years, that will continue to be my focus in the months ahead.”

Not graceful, but such maneuvers by catastrophically ignorant and insensitive candidates never are. Apparently Akin has decided he wants to pit his failed record as a human being against the Democrats’  ” failed economic record.” Good luck with that.

Speaking of records, Emily’s List gives folks a few other reasons to fear Akin:

  • Akin Has Consistently Received 0% Pro-Choice Ratings From Planned Parenthood.
  • Akin is an avid supporter of the Paul Ryan Plan which would end Medicare as we know it, and thinks cuts should be even deeper.
  • Todd Akin doesn’t support Social Security, a program that is responsible for keeping millions of seniors out of poverty.
  • Akin is a founding member of the House Tea Party Caucus
  • In a debate, Akin didn’t even know the minimum wage (federal minimum wage is $7.25/hr), but still wanted to hurt working families by lowering it further.

They also came up with an FAQ on his ” tenure to date” in the House:

  • Cutting Social Security? Akin says it was a “terrible investment” anyway!
  • Ending Medicare as we know it? Akin’s on board.
  • Making sure Mom makes as much as Dad would at the same job? Akin’s not for that.
  • Changing the definition of rape so that some are legally ‘worse’ than others? Akin is totally on board.
  • Compelling the IRS to audit rape victims who seek to end a pregnancy? Akin thinks that’s entirely appropriate.
  • Defunding preventative services like cancer screenings and birth control? Check!
  • Increasing aid to public schools, colleges, and early childhood education? Certainly not.
  • Extending unemployment benefits in the middle of the recession? No way!

You might from this spring the Stop Abortion Funding in Multi-state Exchange Plans (SAFE) Act (HR 4971). This abomination was introduced in late April by Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO), was designed to, as  Raw Story reported, “amend the new federal health care law to ensure that health insurance exchanges would not cover abortion procedures. The health care reform law required all 50 states to set up a health insurance exchange system by 2014… Like the Hyde Amendment, the SAFE Act would allow for exemptions if the pregnancy was the result of an act of rape or incest, or if the mother experienced certain medical conditions.”

It’s illustrative of our times that McCaskill, reports the New York Times, spent “nearly $2 million on ads portraying Mr. Akin as ultraconservative”  and here Akin goes and does it for free. We’re living in an age when Republicans can’t wait to flash their extremist cred.

Akin apparently decided even rape wasn’t an excuse – not even legitimate rape. A Republican, after all, has to get more extreme in order to continually prove himself to the bigoted base. You can see why this guy would be considered a Republican’s Republican, assuming you can use the term at all for a group that seems to oppose with every fiber of their being the very idea of Republic.

14 Replies to “Todd Akin Says Raped Women Do Not Get Pregnant So No Abortions”

  1. In the United States, a single act of rape has about a 5% chance of resulting in pregnancy, because many younger American women are on hormonal contraceptives, and we are not factoring in the number of victiims who are below the age of fertility, beyond it, or have had surgical procedures which either diminsh or destroy fertility. In countries where the number of fertile-age women is high and hormonal contraception rare, the number of impregnations is closer to 15%. That’s for one episode. But when the rapist/rapists have the victim at their mercy over a period of time, the percentage rises drastically. So does the possibility of venereal infection and morbidity/mortality.

  2. How did this ideological syphilitic whore get elected to Congress in the first place.
    And I have a question for this “waste of human skin”: What’s legitimate rape?? I’m lost!
    I don’t see how a male can make a decision on abortion in the first place. A women who is impregnated by rape has to make a decision, and the decision should be hers alone, but,she should have the choice,she should be provided with the best available care, not some back room coat hanger goon for a couple of hundred bucks.
    If this scum bag and many of his ilk win the house and senate, then the back room goon coat hanger will be the norm again, and choice will be forever gone.

  3. This is one of the most extreme scumbags brought to us by the teahaters. Anyone who would vote for him,is a pathetic and sick as he is..Why do these sicko’s think they can go on tv and spew their gutter slime? This is brought to us by faux news…

  4. This is America in 2012. Akin epitomizes conservative Christians and the direction America is heading. Anyone surprised, offended, or in utter disbelief of his sentiment and statements has not been paying attention.
    Last year the GOP were re-defining rape, so it is curious why there is outrage he uses the term “legitimate rape.”

    Most frightening is that what he is saying out loud represents the mindset of an ever-growing segment of the population supporting theocratic rule.

  5. Even a 5% chance isn’t all that low. And even if it were only a 0.0005% chance, there’d be no excuse for such cruelty to victims in cases when it happened.

  6. Has this sorry piece of trash completely lost his mind or what? Rape legitimate? What in God’s name does he mean by that? These Tea Party types are not conservatives but more likely facists. That kind of thinking is about as far right as the ravings of Hitler.

    If this sorry specimen is a typical example of modern-day Republican thinking, then Heaven help the United States if the next occupant of the White House and his buddy are the two-R’s!

  7. You beat me to it! (GRIN!)

    All those people have to do is listen to conversations between “Good Christians” or in the “Good Christian” churches. I remember hearing things like that back when we still went to a mainstream church – an EPISCOPAL church (with a woman Presiding Bishop at that). It didn’t come from the pulpit, but it could be heard (coming from men) in less public conversations (I probably heard it three or four times – nearly 8 years ago).

    This is just one tiny example of how extreme the dominionists are getting.

    (I need to add we’ve been out of the loop so to speak for a few years now… and I still hear and read things like that!)

    They actually believe that cr*p.

  8. With Republicans like Todd Akin and Paul Ryan redefining (“forcible” &/or “legitimate”) rape, I cannot for the life of me figure out why so many chicken littles are running around with their hair on fire about Sharia law. Republican-pseudo-christians are worse.

    Arab Spring in the Middle East –> Republicans FALL in the USA

  9. With Republicans like Todd Akin and Paul Ryan redefining (“forcible” &/or “legitimate”) rape, I cannot for the life of me figure out why so many chicken littles are running around with their hair on fire about Sharia law. Republican-pseudo-christians are worse.

    Arab Spring in the Middle East –> GOPers FALL in the USA

  10. I’m curious myself re. legitimate rape but the one that really has me stupmed if unforced rape. As a woman I wasn’t aware that there were two classes of rape, forced and unforced. How in God’s name were these people given life. They could have done the country and the world a lot of good if they had all ‘self’ aborted(borrowed from Mitt Romney re. ‘self’ deportation). Were they all dropped on their heads at the moment of birth?

  11. No man has the right to decide for a woman. The fact that men think they even have the right to make a decision about something that they themselves don’t and can’t understand is ridiculous .

    Now the man should be allowed to voice their opinion , but ultimately the choice is and always will be the women’s

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