Okay, full disclosure — I’m a college-educated, Missouri Republican woman. I’m also a feminist (no, the two are not mutually exclusive), pro-choice with lots of restrictions (no, the two are not mutually exclusive), and not fundamentally religious (we Methodists are pretty laid-back). And I voted for Claire McCaskill originally. (She was a great prosecutor; this was before she called George Bush a racist, which is when she lost me.)
But I think Todd Akin has got to go.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, Akin told an interviewer that he doesn’t think rape warrants abortion. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” Akin said. By that “whole thing,” he meant conception.
Later, he told Mike Huckabee, “I misspoke one word in one sentence on one day.”
No, the problem isn’t the one word, legitimate. Yes, that’s insulting and basically says a woman who got pregnant from rape must have “wanted it.” Hate that phrase. Yes, we all secretly want to have painful, humiliating sex without benefit of foreplay. Ugh. Only an idiot would believe that.
It’s the comment itself that bothers me. That scares me.
Anyone dumb enough to believe a woman has some ability to control conception is really scary. A person that uneducated, that stupid, should not be running our country. And he makes all the rest of us Republicans look stupid by association. Someone who believes something that dumb does not represent me.
So step down, Mr. Akin. Let the GOP pick your replacement. Because the Republicans need Missouri, need those electoral votes, and if you stay on the ticket, you’ll probaby lose it for us. We’ll be talking about “legitimate rape” instead of the economy. I know you want this for yourself, but you need to do what’s best for party and country. Stop being selfish and go fall on your sword.
UPDATE: Yes, Akin can still step down. It would cost the Republican party — they’d have to reimburse the state of Missouri for any expenses reprinting ballots, etc. (Technically Akin would have to sue and pay those expenses, but I’m sure the party would step up and cough it up.)
* Akin’s quotes taken from the article, “Mo. congressman defies GOP leaders to stay in race,” by David A. Lieb, Associated Press.